Would you or your loved one prefer to retain independence and age in place rather than live at a nursing facility? You are not alone. Successful aging in place is becoming more and more common. Just as the global population of older adults is growing at an unprecedented pace, so is the same population group in the United States. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the American 65 and older population is expected to double over the next thirty years – from 48 million to nearly 90 million. Furthermore, global life expectancy is projected to extend an additional eight years within the same period.
It comes as no surprise then that these demographic shifts have created demand for aging in place options. And with the call for older adult independence, comes the need to create a plan that includes the support and resources to address specific individual needs holistically.
Here is a checklist of the eight steps to create a solid plan that ensures successful aging in place:
8 Steps to Successful Aging in Place
1. Round-Up Important Information
Make a list of all assets, income, and expenses. Do the finances cover all costs of living, including medical? If not, find out if there are any assistance programs offered by the county, city, and or state.
2. Evaluate your Living Space
Determine if the home is suitable for all age-related needs. Are there any home modifications such as grab bars, walk-in tubs, or stair lifts that need to be made? Below, you’ll find a short list of other common alterations for successful aging in place.
- Wheelchair ramps
- Shower transfer benches
- Non-skid strips
- Push-button door openers
- Roll out shelves
- Climate controls.
3. Assess Your Health Needs and Coverage
Create a list of health issues and necessary medications. Does the existing health insurance cover everything? If not, are there any local organizations that can assist with these expenses?
4. Look Into Home Care
Determine which healthcare services and other types of care are needed at home, and which must be conducted a medical facility. Assistance with daily activities such as bathing, dressing, and eating are quite common. Additionally, many organizations provide extended assistance with a variety of services from caring for medical devices to grocery shopping.
Define transportation needs. If still driving, find out when your license expires as well as what age-appropriate requirements exist to renew. Additionally, make a list of frequent destinations. Do you require public transportation? If so, is it accessible for specific health needs?
6. Seek Out Senior Activities
Discover what senior activities are available within the community. Social interaction is key to good health as well as successful aging. Be sure to schedule regular entertainment and continuing education as well.
7. Plan for Every Scenario
Create an advanced care plan with loved ones. End-of-life issues and funeral services are difficult to discuss, but they are a necessary preparation.
8. Contact David York Agency for Professional Care
For more information about David York Agency’s qualified, compassionate caregivers, please contact us at 718.376.7755. If you’d like to hear more from us, please like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn.