Ask an Expert
Today in "Ask an Expert," we are answering a question that we get a lot: Where can I find resources for my aging parents?
Our expert is Heather Cox, SSW, one of our in-home case managers. She has worked in aging since 2008 and has been with Five County since 2013.
If you have aging parents, you’re probably looking for resources such as:
Services that provide care in the home
Financial or estate planning and healthcare insurance questions
End of life decision making and documents
Support for being a caregiver or part of the “sandwich generation” who is taking care of aging parents and young children
Help for dealing with a love done who has dementia or Alzheimer’s
How to help your parent stay healthy as they age
Safety and aging in place at home
Available benefits such as Medicaid, Meals on Wheels, veterans' services etc.
Managing chronic medical conditions
Long term care facility options
What to do if you suspect your parents are being abused
It can feel really overwhelming and folks often tell us it’s hard to even know where to start, what questions to ask, or what resources to look for.
If you’re local in the Five County area of southwest Utah, call us! We can do what we call options counseling with you and help you sort out exactly what resources will benefit you and where to find them. We’ve been there and are familiar with what the most common questions are and what’s available in the area.
If you’re not in the local area, you can go to the Eldercare Locator https://eldercare.acl.gov/Public/Index.aspx and find your local Area Agency on Aging and contact them.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed, pick one thing that seems like your top priority and start with that. And know that you’re not alone. Many others are dealing with the same things all across the country every day.
Here is a list of other helpful places to look for resources:
Benefits.gov https://www.benefits.gov/ lists benefits your parents may qualify for.
Department of Veterans Affairs https://www.caregiver.va.gov/index.asp for those whose parents have served in the military.
Utah Medicaid https://medicaid.utah.gov/ health insurance for low-income folks
Utah Adult Protective Services https://daas.utah.gov/adult-protective-services/ You can report online if you suspect abuse or call them.
Supplemental Security Income https://www.ssa.gov/benefits/ssi/ Your parents may be eligible for this federal program.
SAGE Utah https://www.lgbtagingcenter.org/resources/resource.cfm?r=483 helping with the needs of LGBT persons age 50+
Meals on Wheels https://www.mealsonwheelsamerica.org/
FCA Care Nav https://fca.cacrc.org/login can help you find family caregiver resources
Utah Senior Centers https://daas.utah.gov/locations-old/senior-centers/
National Council on Aging https://www.ncoa.org/
Utah Advance Health Care Directive form http://uuhsc.utah.edu/cacir/docs/UtahAdvanceDirectiveForm.pdf
We also post regularly about resources on our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/AgingFiveCountyUtah and have a private caregiver support group there where you can ask questions and get support. https://www.facebook.com/groups/aaa5countycaregiversupport
Heather Cox is a licensed Social Services Worker, Certified Dementia Specialist, Trainer, and RCI REACH Caregiver Coach with a B.S. in Psychology. She's been with AAA-Five County since 2013 and has worked in social services in southwest Utah since 2008.