When Dad Has Dementia: Arranging Health Care for an Aging Parent

Here’s how we helped a recent client get great care for his parents as they both faced health challenges.

January 24, 2021

Caring for aging family members can be stressful, emotional, and overwhelming. At times like this, having someone outside the family who can assist and provide decision support is invaluable. As an example of the Better Health Advisors process, here’s how we helped a recent client get great care for his parents as they both faced health challenges.

Providing a Supportive, Sensitive Care Plan

Aaron* works in the C-suite of an investment firm based in Texas. His father, Dale, and mother, Patty, live in Philadelphia. Dale is in his 90s and has dementia. He is hard of hearing, but resists wearing a hearing aid, which makes communication challenging. Because Aaron lives so far away, he was worried about them and knew he couldn’t be there to help if something went wrong. A colleague recommended that he contact Better Health Advisors.

The BHA team got to know Dale and Patty, assessed their respective health conditions, and created a plan for their care. We learned their providers, preferred hospitals, healthcare preferences, and concerns. We became familiar faces whose healthcare knowledge they trust and respect.

Three months later, Patty took a fall and fractured her hip. We had two immediate concerns—how to support her care in the ER and hospital during COVID, and how to safely help Dale at home. Since we knew them well and had thought through this kind of scenario, we were prepared to act. Our existing relationship helped ensure our success.

  • We connected Aaron with a top home health care agency that we trust. Together, we arranged for Dale to have 24/7 care while Patty was in rehab for several months.
  • BHA Senior Advisor Beverly Shenkman recognized that Dale was frustrated and angry about losing his independence and autonomy. She worked closely with the agency, emphasizing the importance of finding an understanding aide who could provide compassionate support and care.
  • When Patty came home from the rehabilitation hospital, we arranged for a home safety evaluation to eliminate potential risks. We made sure their home was a safe place for both of them.
  • To relieve Patty's caregiving responsibilities, we arranged for the agency to continue to assist with Dale's care as needed. We are in regular communication with the agency to make sure everything is going smoothly.

The team at Better Health Advisors understands that every family is different and has unique needs. For guidance on ensuring that your loved ones have access to the best care, reach out to us.

*For client confidentiality, all names and identifying information have been changed.

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