What is a Senior Care Advocate?
A Senior Care Advocate assists seniors and their families with concerns regarding matters of health, housing and other issues of aging. Whether a professional or a family member becomes an advocate, the goal is to keep the best interests of the elderly person in clear focus.
Senior care advocacy covers a broad range of services, such as assisting seniors to apply for government benefits, such as Medicaid and Social Security disability, reviewing medical bills and insurance claims, and providing support after a hospital stay. Becoming a senior care advocate does not require a license or certification, nor is there a specific education level.
However, senior care advocates must be knowledgeable regarding the needs of seniors in the areas of health care, financial assistance and resources for day-to-day living.
It is not unusual for someone in the family to act as an advocate for an older family member. Often a parent, grandparent or other older loved one becomes too ill to manage things on his own. When a family member steps in and takes over the care of the senior, he is acting as the care advocate for his loved one.
The responsibility of acting as the care advocate for a senior family member is far greater than simply taking him to a doctor's appointment or picking up a filled prescription from the pharmacy. The role of the care advocate entails making sure that everything regarding the senior's medical care is taken care of correctly.
Some of the responsibilities of a Senior Care Advocate include:
Everything regarding Medicare, Medicaid and supplemental secondary insurance coverage, limitations and benefits
Visits to doctors, tests and procedures
Making sure prescriptions are taken correctly
Making sure that all information is correct if a hospital visit occurs
Making sure that an Advanced Health Care Directive, sometimes called a Power of Attorney, and a Living Will, is in place
For the family member that takes on the responsibility of acting as the loved one's care advocate, the job can be exhausting, especially if he is caught in the sandwich generation. The term sandwich generation refers to people who find themselves in the middle of working, having children of their own at home or in college and caring for an aging ill parent or relative all at the same time.
If the responsibility of caregiver or advocate becomes overwhelming, sharing the responsibilities with another family member or engaging the services of a professional care advocate for seniors is often the best solution for everyone. It is also generally the best solution when close family members do not live near the senior who needs assistance.
Elder Options of Texas
All Rights Reserved
DISCLAIMER: Links to other websites or references to products, services or publications do not imply the endorsement or approval of such websites, products, services or publications by Elder Options of Texas. The determination of the need for senior care services and the choice of a facility is an extremely important decision. Please make your own independent investigation.