Mayor's Office of Employee Assistance
Creating a Care Plan
As a caregiver, you will face many challenges and problems. A care plan will help you map out what needs to be done, when and by whom. It will also help to relieve stress and anxiety, so that you can focus on the problems and issues at hand. Care plans may cover a wide range of concerns and problems, or they can focus on one particular problem at a time.
When creating a care plan, work with both the care recipient and other family members or friends to get as much input as possible
into the decision-making process. This way, no one will feel left out and everyone will share some of the responsibility for the outcome.
CARE PLANS CAN BE CREATED IN FOUR STAGES
Stage 1: Evaluate the Situation.
What problems is your elderly relative having?
What kind of help does he or she need? What
are the specific symptoms of his or her illness?
What are the problems and benefits of the
current living situation? What sorts of problems
are likely to arise in the future? Rank the
problems that your elder is facing in order of
importance or difficulty: transportation, personal
care, meals, bill-paying, etc.
Stage 2: Research.
Find out as much information as you can
about available alternatives and options. To
help guide you, find local, regional, and
national groups devoted to aging, elder care,
and the illnesses of aging. Talk to doctors,
therapists, and social workers to get advice
and information. Find out what kind of help
is available in your community—meals on
wheels, senior centers, support groups, transportation services or hospice services.
Stage 3: Analyze.
After you have gathered all the available information, sit down with your elder and other
family members and analyze your options.
Look at all of the options and weigh their
benefits and costs. Usually, there is no perfect
solution; rather, it will be a matter of choosing
what works best from the options available.
Stage 4: Decide.
In conjunction with all the others involved,
make decisions and act on them. Go through
your list of problems to be solved, and decide
what can be done to alleviate or solve them.
Although everyone might not agree with all
the decisions, it is important that you work
together, with everyone’s input, to come up
with feasible solutions.
What a Care Plan Can Include
A care plan can include anything that you want it to or need it to.
Here are some suggestions:
Who will care for my relative, and when?
What kind of care is needed, and when?
How will expenses be paid?
Who will make what decisions and be responsible for what specific duties?
Who will handle bills?
Who will help with transportation?
Who will help with meals?
Who will help with the activities of daily living?
What is our plan for an emergency?
Who are back-up caregivers?
Where are important financial, legal and medical documents stored?
Does everyone who may need them have access to them?
When putting together a care plan, research
available alternatives and options, then work
with both the care recipient and other family members to make decisions.
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