Magazine article Work & Family Life

Planning Ahead for At-Home Care for Mom

Magazine article Work & Family Life

Planning Ahead for At-Home Care for Mom

Article excerpt

Q My mother is in her 80s and is determined to stay in her own home for as long as possible. But I look around and see an old house that lacks modern safety features.

With all the uncertainty about social programs and other forms of federal aid, we are trying to figure out what we can do now to plan for the next decade. Your ideas?

-J. C., Kalamazoo, MI

A This is a big issue that will get even bigger. The number of Americans 65 and older will reach 73 million in 2030, according to the Census Bureau. Most older people need long-term care at some point, and a recent survey found that 80 percent of seniors say they want to age in place. Here's what we've learned:

* Most families end up stitching together a patchwork system of care using hands-on help, private aides and local resources. But with smaller families and fewer children to bear the responsibility, this approach is problematic.

* The cost of hiring help is daunting for most families, and it's not something Medicare pays for. …

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