Adult Day Care Question
Question: I am the primary caregiver for my elderly mother. I have become aware of the daily stress and emotional and physical impact it is having on my health. What can I do to give myself a break?
Hook Law Center Answer: We recommend you look into an adult day care facility in your area. Adult day care respite is two-fold. It gives the caregivers much needed time to themselves, and it gives the caregivers’ loved ones social and interactive therapy with their peers.
Many adult day services offer such things as:
- Social activities; music, movies, crafts, excursions;
- Fellowship support;
- Assistance with daily living;
- Nursing care;
- Help with activities of daily living;
- Physical therapy; and
Finding an adult day care provider takes a little investigating on your part. It is important to know what you are getting and that your loved one is comfortable with his or her new surroundings.
First: Ask for recommendations. Check with your local senior center, Area Agency on Aging Services, mental health centers, physician, clinic, family, friends and neighbors. The best recommendation is by someone who has used the adult day care or is familiar with those who run it.
Second: Phone and ask the facility to send you information. Ask specifically to be sent the application, eligibility requirements and payment information. Ask to see the calendar of activities, menus, hours and days of operation to be sure they fit your schedule. Ask about availability of transportation to and from the location and what is the cost. Ask who runs the facility. Is it private, non-profit or a franchise or part of an assisted living facility or a nursing home?
Third: Visit the adult day care facility. Go visit the provider location along with the person for whom you are providing care. See if the staff is friendly. Check that it is clean and odor free. Ask about the experience of the staff. Request a list of references.
Fourth: Find out the cost and payment requirements. A survey from NCOA/NADSA provides the following information on fees: “Fees for Adult Day Care providers range from $25 per day to $70 per day, with the average around $50 per day. Many facilities provide services with a sliding fee scale.”
One last word of advice. Don’t feel guilty about taking your loved one to adult day care.