While we endeavor to assist seniors and their families at whatever stage of the long term care process they request our services, the ideal time for a Life Care Plan is immediately after an event which leaves one concerned about the elder's future.
Triggering events may be a diagnosis of a potentially debilitating chronic condition such as cancer, Alzheimer's Disease, Multiple Sclerosis or Parkinson's Disease. Sometimes medical events such as a stroke, heart attack, or a debilitating fall trigger a family to consider our assistance. Other times family members come to a realization that their elder family member is not adequately providing for his or her own care and may be malnourished, dehydrated or simply unable to handle the activities of daily living.
The goal of a pre-crisis plan is assess current needs and to determine what services, if any, are needed to maximize the chances that the elder can age in his or her desired location, usually home. Assessing and implementing appropriate care early in the long term care process increases the possibility that placement in a less desirable location, such as a nursing home will ever be necessary. If such placement can be avoided by appropriate care and planning then the elder is happier to be in a more desirable setting and assets are preserved.
A life care plan helps you access our network of community services and resources. Early planning helps you put legal and financial affairs in order, while it is still possible. Such planning helps to avoid the asset protection crisis that many face if long term care in a facility becomes necessary.
Ultimately, the goal of life care planning is to empower the elder and the family members to navigate the system of long term care as informed and activated participants. Should a facility be necessary at some point, the elder and family members can rest assured that their decisions will be supported by a team of elder professionals who will help them find appropriate care, make appropriate decisions about the financial aspects of the care (including the legal contracts) and will be there to ensure the best care available for the elder.