Value of Home Care for Elderly
More seniors are reaching retirement age right now than at any other time in history. The so-called Baby Boomer generation is now aging, and moving to retirement from the workforce. (Baby Boomers are men and women who were born sometime between the end of World War II in 1945, and the mid-1960’s.)
This huge segment of the population is growing old, and many of these seniors have a desire to “age in place.” That is, to remain within the comfort of their own home. To do so, they may need the additional support and care assistance provided by an in-home care agency. The supply of seniors and aging parents is placing an increasing demand on home care services.
Many of these seniors have witnessed how their parents, and grandparents, have navigated through life. They have seen the challenges of growing old, such as physical limitations, medical, financial needs, housing, and socialization. There is an increased desire to identify needs, and attempt to define life on their own terms through utilizing the right mix of resources in order to stay within the comfort of home.
Home care agencies, and home care aides, are crucial to building the support structure for the elderly to remain at home. These people/services bridge the gap of isolation, socialization, transportation, companionship, and recovery.
Home care provides a badly needed, and critical service to our aging parents. But there is a cost. Aides need to receive a working wage for their investment in elders. Federal funding for Medicare services, which can partially cover some in-home medical services, has been cut every year since 2012. Medicare services are, in fact, quite limited in delivery and duration for aging adults.
There is no socialized, free, home care service for seniors. To remain independent in retirement years requires financial planning. Those on fixed or limited income are limited in their options.
There are changes coming via new technologies, including home security, physician home visitation, efficient home delivery, and web based communication with doctors. But there is always a need for human communication. We need to create a system that supports both care givers and the elderly they so admirably serve.
Home care agencies provide an answer for senior services. But finances are a barrier.