Introduction to Elder Care
Finding appropriate and affordable elder care and assistance is challenging. Determining exactly what type of care will best fit elders' needs is a time consuming process that often requires consultation with medical and eldercare professionals. Locating affordable appropriate and reliable care options is also time consuming. Different types of care are available in different places, while costs and quality vary widely. Identifying and locating appropriate and affordable local elder care resources can become a full time job that is stressful for all participants. Even employers and coworkers can be affected when the strain of eldercare planning makes caregivers less effective at their workplace.
This document is designed as a guide to help families sort through the various issues involved in selecting and locating appropriate eldercare services. The document begins by describing different issues that might cause an elder to require care. It goes on to discuss guidelines for selecting an appropriate level of care suited to a given elder's needs. Next, the various types of generally available elder care are described, followed by a discussion of characteristics that should be considered when evaluating care facilities or in-home care providers. The document ends with a discussion of issues that can arise for families and for elders during the transition into eldercare.