Primary Caregivers

Directivas anticipadas de atención médica y POLST (Advance Health Care Directives and POLST)

La Advance Health Care Directive (AHCD, Directiva anticipada de atención médica) le permite designar a una persona (agente de atención médica, apoderado, representante o sustituto) para que tome una decisión por usted en caso de que usted no pueda hablar por sí mismo. También se denomina “Poder notarial perdurable para la atención médica”, “Ley de muerte natural”, “Directiva para médicos” o “Testamento vital”. (El testamento vital es ligeramente diferente; consulte qué se reconoce en su estado).

Consejos para cuidadores de personas con demencia que sufren incontinencia

  • Hable con el médico para determinar si los medicamentos, el agrandamiento de la próstata o una infección urinaria pueden estar causando el problema, especialmente en el caso de un inicio repentino de la incontinencia.

A once virile, passionate Italian was now void of all emotion

My name is Lisa. I’m a baby boomer and so was my childhood sweetheart. We met at 15, and dated until we were married in 1966, just turning 20 years old. We were born in August, and chose that month to marry as well. A lot of celebrating for two Leos.

Our life began rather simply. Living and working in San Francisco, but wanting to start a family, we decided to buy a home in the burbs.

When Caregiving Ends

Caregiving can last for many years.  Caregivers set their own lives aside to care for someone else.  When that person dies, caregivers have to figure out what to do with their lives now.  There is no preparation for this transition.  Generally you are so busy caregiving, and life changed so long ago, that there has not been time nor energy or even the psychological will to think about what comes next.  Here are some tips that might help you during this time:

A Caregiver’s Bill of Rights

I have the right . . .

  • To take care of myself.  This is not an act of selfishness. It will give me the capacity of taking better care of my relative.
  • To seek help from others even though my relative may object. I recognize the limits of my own endurance and strength.
  • To maintain facets of my own life that do not include the person I care for, just as I would if he or she were healthy. I know that I do everything that I reasonably can for this person, and I have the right to do some things for myself.

Legal Planning for Incapacity

As you face aging and the need to make plans for your future, you face having to make legal decisions about many aspects of your lives. These legal decisions not only protect you from others doing things you might not like to you, they also protect family and loved ones by giving them guidance in the care that you would like to receive. After completing all the legal paperwork, the next step is to sit down and talk to family about the decisions you have made and why.


Finding an Attorney to Help with Estate Planning

Before you or a loved one is faced with a life limiting illness or cognitive impairment, it is important to have completed the legal paperwork necessary for estate planning. Unfortunately, this often not the case, and family is trying to get the necessary legal documents completed under difficult circumstances, such as cognitive impairment, where someone is no longer able to manage his/her affairs or a medical crisis. (see Tip Sheet: Making Decisions: What Are Your Important Papers)

Conservatorship and Guardianship

When someone is no longer able to handle his or her own financial or personal affairs, the court can appoint an individual or professional to act on behalf of the incapacitated person. When a minor child is involved, it is generally called a guardianship. When an adult needs someone, it is called a conservatorship. However, states define these terms differently and you need to consult an attorney in your state to determine what the law is.

Advance Health Care Directives and POLST

The Advance Health Care Directive (ADHC) allows you to appoint someone (health care agent, attorney-in-fact, proxy or surrogate) to make a decision for you if you can not speak for yourself. It is also called the Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care, Natural Death Act, Directive to Physicians or a Living Will. (The living will is slightly different; check on what is recognized in your state.) Every state recognizes the ADHC, but states have their own forms, as laws vary from state to state.


Emergency Preparedness Checklist for Caregivers

Floods, earthquakes, tornados, snowstorms . . . wherever you live, there likely exists the potential for a variety of natural disasters that can create an emergency situation. When you're caring for a loved one, it's times like these that you'll be thankful for having prepared for such a situation.

Please use this checklist to organize your emergency preparations. It should be used in conjunction with the Where to Find My Important Papers checklist.



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