Communion Of Dreams

October: Hospice, or placement?
August 3, 2010, 1:31 pm
Filed under: Alzheimer's, Writing stuff

(I’ve been working on the care giving book, creating introductions for each month/chapter. This is the one for October, and I thought I would share.)

Jim Downey


October: Hospice, or placement?

After all you have been through, after all your care giving, it has come to this: you need help. Not just a weekly break, not just someone coming in to help clean a bit, or check in on your loved one. No, you need some serious help. Because the Alzheimer’s has progressed far enough that it is clear that the end is in sight – meaning more intense care needs, increased physical problems, actual medical attention required.

What are your choices? What are your options?

Because it isn’t a simple matter of “do this, or this.” Insurance coverage varies widely from place to place and plan to plan. Government programs at the local, state, and federal levels all have their own arcane rules. Visiting Nurses associations may be in your area, and able to help. Or not. Hospice programs may exist and be able to provide care. Or not.

It’s a mess, frankly. And you’re probably now so exhausted from the years of being a care giver that you can’t make sense of it. At all. Chances are you’ll grab at whatever straw is first offered. Will it be the right choice?

There * is * no right choice. There is no wrong choice. Come to terms with that now. Or you will beat yourself up for no reason. You can only do the best you are capable, at the time. It may be hospice, if one is available. It may be placement in a full-time nursing facility. It may be something else entirely. You may have little or no control over your choices, and the decision may be made for you by external factors.


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