As professionals working to help families, we can learn a lot from listening to those clients and families. What concerns them? What are their priorities as they age and face eldercare issues?
Harris Interactive conducted a poll for The National Association of Professional Geriatric Care Managers, surveying over 2,000 adults on their concerns related to aging and eldercare.
• While losing their physical or mental health was the top rated consumer concern overall (83%), at a close second (78%) was not having sufficient finances to support themselves or their spouses/partners later in life.
• A relatively high percentage of consumers (71%) were concerned about having to leave their homes or losing their independence.
• Losing a spouse/partner and/or having to live alone weighed heavily on the minds of many of the respondents (66%) as did a spouse/partner having to care for a person if he or she was to become frail or were dying.
• Other major concerns noted were losing the ability to drive (65%) and having to care for a spouse/partner as they became ill or were dying (58%).
What do these results tell us? As professionals, we can do a lot to help. We can help families feel more prepared to face aging and ensure they are able to support their care needs financially. We can educate families on the many resources for aging in place and how to retain independence and quality of life. We can support family caregivers and help them know they are not alone in their journey.
These are our areas of focus at Aging Wisely and as we kick off the New Year, we will continue to address many of these topics in our educational information, as well as one-on-one in family caregiver consultations. We encourage you to provide us with feedback and contact us if we can help with any of these issues.