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CARENOTES | Past Carenotes | Let's Talk


Welcome to CareNotes. In this special section we will feature a reader's letter and provide an opportunity for an interactive exchange that will help find some answers and possible solutions to concerns. If you wish to respond to this letter, simple follow the link provided at the end of the letter and add your comments and thoughts to our CareNotes Board.

This Week's Carenote - 06/25/13


My 63-year-old, diabetic father-in-law has been staying with us a lot recently and his health is getting worse. If he wasn't with us today, he may have died due to the neglect of his family. What do I need to do in Kansas to become his caregiver? No one else in the family has the means to keep an eye on him or have him live with them. I'm still upset because we almost lost him. We have room in our home for him, but I wasn't sure if I can take a course as a caretaker and bring in addition income to support an extra non-working adult.  We can't support him on our own, but we can't leave him unattended either.  Please help me.


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Name: Bette
Location: Delaware County, PA
Date: 06/26/2013
Time: 06:38 AM


As a first step, contact your county's Area Agency on Aging. They can tell you if they have a Family Caregivers' program to help a little, can give you a list of PERS, info on senior centers, and see if he qualifies for anything else. Ask your father-in-law if he'd agree to letting you ask his doctor questions about his health. If he doesn't agree, the doctor cannot share with you what he/she is treating him for (due to hipaa), but you CAN report to the doctor YOUR concerns about him. As for him living with you: Have you discussed this with him, and will he agree to it? You may ask him if he's thought of taking his Social Security early, and may be able to use a portion of it for his expenses, such as transportation, food, and incidentals, if he does move in. Finally, don't forget a caregivers' support group for yourself!

Name: Linda
Location: Massachusetts
Date: 06/25/2013
Time: 11:34 AM


Hi Stephanie, I work for the Adult Family Care Program in Massachusetts. We are a provider agency who uses state funds to train and pay people to provide care for family members. As long as you are not the guardian or spouse, you would qualify as an AFC Caregiver. Look up Adult Family Care or Adult Foster Care in your state, or inquire through your council on aging. It's paid for by medicaid, so as long as he receives medicaid, he should be eligible in most states.

Name: Marie
Location: Connecticut
Date: 06/25/2013
Time: 11:22 AM


Hi Stephanie, You can take a Certified Nursing Assistant course. This will help you understand and care for your father in law also, bring job oportunities for you. Unfortunatly, most state agencies will not allow you to care for your own family member and get paid. I would look into that before you take the course. Sometimes, the local community colleges and high schools offer courses and a CPR class too! good luck~

Name: Jane
Location: Kansas City
Date: 06/25/2013
Time: 09:41 AM


The first call should be to the Area Agency on Aging that covers the county in which you live. Your father-in-law is eligible for their services by virtue of being over the age of 60. The AAA has a wealth of knowlegde about services for older adults and can also provide a care assessment to define what his needs are. Secondly, the only program available to provide you with income to take care of him is through the state Medicaid program. But he must be eligible for Medicaid before he can get a paid caregiver. The AAA can also help you with finding out if he would qualify for Medicaid. The AAA also has caregiver programs that can help you learn about caregiving and how to manage that without giving up the rest of your life. Good luck. He is lucky to have you.



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