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Aging Wisely January 2012 - Aging Wisely

Geriatric Care Management: The Assessment Process


In our Aging Wisely blog, we like to share answers to some of the most frequently asked questions we receive from family caregivers.  We often get asked about having an elderly loved one assessed or how a family can get a better understanding of what an aging parent may need.Aging Wisely assessment

To learn more about geriatric care management assessments, read: The Resulting Benefits of a Geriatric Care Management Assessment and check out some real-life situations from our sample geriatric assessments.

What families most want to know about the assessment is what to expect out of the process.  When we talk to a family member, we run through what they can expect from that phone call through to receiving the results of the assessment, how we will interact with the family and client and what we wll do at various steps along the way.  Here’s a brief overview of what to expect from the Aging Wisely eldercare assessment process:

  1. A concerned family member (or sometimes a concerned professional like an elder law attorney or geriatrician) contacts the Aging Wisely office.  He or she speaks to one of our office staff, generally our Community Liaison.  During the conversation, we listen to what is going on, what the person’s concerns are and ask some important questions to understand if and how we might help (if we can’t help, we find a good resource to make a qualified referral).
  2. We answer all questions the concerned party might have, such as our background and experience, how we might handle the situation, fees, etc.  We send more information out as necessary or schedule an initial appointment with one of our Aging Wisely care managers.
  3. Depending on the logistics, the family’s initial contact with the care manager may be via phone or email or the care manager may meet the family and client together.
  4. The care manager meets the client at his or her home (or sometimes, meets off-site when appropriate, i.e. the client feels more comfortable meeting initially at his/her attorney’s office, but a home visit will be done later in that case).
  5. The care manager ascertains important information on a variety of aspects about the senior, through observation and gathering data (getting records from physicians and other providers, for example).  Read more about the components of the geriatric assessment.
  6. The care manager assesses the environment, to gauge how the client is managing in daily activities and evaluate safety.  Part of the home safety assessment is a falls prevention checklist.
  7. Pulling together the various areas assessed and the input of the client, family and other involved parties, the care manager provides a written report and overview.  The report includes specific recommendations.
  8. The care manager reviews the assessment and recommendations with the client and/or responsible party.
  9. The care manager can be hired on to assist with carrying out recommendations, immediately or in the future.

For immediate answers to your questions about the assessment process or other eldercare concerns, click below to get a free phone consultation with our Community Liaison. 

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When You Need a Geriatric Care Management Assessment


We receive a lot of inquiries about having a

n assessment done, typically from a family member concerned about an aging loved one or a professional working with a senior client. We have previously covered The Results One Can Expect from a Professional Geriatric Assessment and some of the Components of an Assessment in reviewing an elder’s functioning.

Here are some typical scenarios when you should call to find out about getting a geriatric assessment or care management eldercare consultation:

1. You go to visit an elderly parent who does not live near you and find things are not what you expected.

2. Your siblings are at war over what to do to help Mom.

3. You’ve tried to bring in help or suggested safety changes and your elderly Dad won’t budge.

4. You have a friend or client who is caring for a spouse with dementia and you can see he or she is wearing out fast.

5. Mom’s at the hospital and the doctor says he doesn’t think she can return home alone.

To find qualified geriatric care managers throughout the country, you can contact us or visit the National Association of Professional Geriatric Care Manager’s website. When interviewing care managers, find out about their experience with similar situations, how they plan to approach your situation, and get detailed information about their experience, qualifications and fee structures.

It is always important to feel comfortable in hiring any professional, but especially so in the sensitive situations involved in health and eldercare. Because eldercare often involves a crisis, you may feel panicked to get some help. Any professional in eldercare should respond quickly and be able to provide you with information and answers to your questions to make an informed decision. In the growing field of eldercare there are many individuals getting into consulting or providing services to families, but not all of them have the expertise and standards you would expect. Professional care managers adhere to a strict code of ethics and standards of practice.

You may be concerned about spending money on professional advice and it may feel that this is very personal and something that should be handled within the family. For many families, getting an affordable professional care management consultation helps to set them in the right direction, saving valuable time and money. For these very personal and serious decisions, getting good, tailored advice will be well worth the initial costs.

Fees vary throughout the country, but most care managers offer a consultation and assessment for a one time fee, with no further obligation. This is valuable especially in a crisis, and the services and resources identified will often save you more than you pay. Similarly, care managers can tailor a plan for ongoing services for those that need help with tasks or oversight of care. Ask the care management company about assisting with long term care claims also if you have long-term care insurance.

Contact Aging Wisely today for information on Florida Geriatric Care Management, Eldercare Consultations, and Clearwater/Tampa Bay Senior Services. We welcome your questions via email or telephone!


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