Broker Check


April 11, 2018

Within the next hour, 327 elderly people may be treated in an emergency room for a fall--that's one fall every 11 seconds . (Horsesmouth, 2017)  Even more unsettling is that three of them may die from that fall – about one every 20 minutes.   (Horsesmouth, 2017)

These jolting statistics come from the National Council on Aging. Many of us have dealt with elderly loved ones who have fallen.  In fact, one in four elderly persons may experience a fall each year.

Falling is not the only health and safety risk of getting older. Others may include declining cognition leading to nutrition, medication and home safety deficits as well as the aging of the human body and the accompanying symptoms of chronic medical conditions.

In addition to health and safety issues, there are other issues to be considered as we age and as those we love age:

  • Examination of personal care needs and potentially, long term care needs;
  • Appropriate legal documents, not only to provide instructions as to the disposal of assets, but also to provide planning for the protection of those assets and the appointment of and instructions for surrogate financial and health care decision makers; and
  • A detailed look at financial planning matters including tracking assets, liabilities and cash flow and assessing tax and financial sustainability issues.

Families can reach a stage of equilibrium or stability which can last for quite some time- and then something happens, usually to the oldest generation. A caregiving crisis hits stress increases as family harmony and happiness may dissipate.

Many of my clients are part of the classic "sandwich generation." They're putting their kids through college, they're trying to save for retirement and now they suddenly face new pressures and challenges taking care of one or more elderly parents.  Add in those clients also trying to help with their grandchildren and we may have given risk to a new “club sandwich generation”.

The solution may be a well thought out caregiving plan to address personal, medical, legal and financial matters.

What exactly is a caregiving plan? This type of plan provides a framework for discussing the "what ifs" that may unfold in the very near or further out future of a care recipient.   It outlines the care recipient's wishes and priorities, it assesses needs in medical, legal, financial, and personal areas and helps to organize the resources that are available to your family to provide help.

Caregiving almost always impacts the rest of the family, and in a big way. Family caregivers often get caught up in delivering care to their loved ones and it can cause them to forget about their own needs and wants and family and job.  A caregiving plan needs to address the impact on the family.

If you would like to discuss this very important issue with us further…or your situation in particular, please feel free to contact us. We are here to help.