Geriatric Experts Agree that Adult Children Underestimate Costs, Challenges of Caring for Aging Parents
(NEW YORK, NY) May 10th, 2005
— SeniorBridge announced today the findings from an April 20 meeting of key leaders in the eldercare field who serve on its Professional Advisory Board. The meeting addressed the issues facing the growing number of older Americans who require ongoing care, and found that family caregivers underestimate what it takes to properly care for their aging relatives.
"The need for professional caregiving is an increasingly urgent issue with the aging of baby boomers," states Robert Butler, MD, President and CEO of the International Longevity Center-USA and Professor of Geriatrics at Mount Sinai School of Medicine. Dr. Butler goes on to say, "As life expectancy increases, more people are dying of chronic diseases rather than acute illnesses. In light of this, the importance of new approaches to long-term care is evident."
According to Peter Rabins, MD, MPH, Director of the Geriatric Psychiatry Program at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and co-author of The 36-Hour Day, the first comprehensive book about Alzheimer’s for the lay person, "Not only do most caregivers not realize that they are experiencing mental and physical stresses that are putting their own well-being at risk, they also don’t realize that there are professional services that can offer significant help with their caregiving responsibilities."
"When you have one person with dementia, you have at least two people of which to take care," said Jason Karlawish, MD, Assistant Professor of Geriatric Medicine, Fellow in the Institute on Aging and Faculty in the Center for Bioethics at University of Pennsylvania. Explains Dr. Karlawish, "The family has always played a vital role in providing direct care. By the moderate to severe stages of dementia, the family caregiver makes most of the treatment decisions. That’s why managing the health of the caregiver is an integral part to treating the patient."
Terry Fulmer, Phd, RN, FAAN, the newly appointed Dean of New York University’s College of Nursing adds, "Caring for a loved one with dementia can often be fraught with emotion, guilt and confusion. Professional caregiving services can help family caregivers balance the concern for their loved one’s safety with maintaining their relative’s independence."
SeniorBridge, a leader in caring for older adults at home, works with family caregivers to help them ease the burdens of caregiving by tailoring each individual care plan with a broad spectrum of ongoing services designed to accommodate the needs of the entire family. These services range from skilled nursing and medication management to personal care and nutrition and fitness services. SeniorBridge’s Professional Advisory Board provides the organization with recommendations, guidance and collegial support regarding program and product development, service issues and strategic alliances. Headquartered in New York City, SeniorBridge has 15 offices throughout the country, including: Baltimore, MD, Boston, MA, Boca Raton, FL, Chicago, IL, Cleveland, OH, Fort Lauderdale, FL, Fort Myers, FL, Great Neck, NY, Indianapolis, IN, Montclair, NJ, Naples, FL, New York, NY, Pittsburgh, PA, San Antonio, TX and West Palm Beach, FL. For more information, please visit our web site at www.seniorbridge.com