CarePatrol is committed to reducing the spread of COVID-19. Read the full letter from our Co-Founder and President here

We Are All In This Together for Safety and Health

During the COVID-19 crisis and always…

For nearly 7 years, CarePatrol of Sarasota and Manatee County has been entrusted with educating and working with families residing in our local communities. We have been invited into homes and hospital rooms during very special times of consideration for care needs whether it be for In-Home Care, Memory Care, Independent or Assisted Living, Elder Law Attorneys, Financial Planning, VA Benefits or Medicaid information.

While these have always been difficult times for families, emotionally and financially, CarePatrol has consistently been by your side from the beginning, following through and following up.

But we are now in unprecedented times. Times of disruption in our daily lives and uncertainty of the present and future.

It’s in times like these where we must remind ourselves of our own vulnerabilities and seek to do everything possible and safely, to assure that those of us who are most susceptible, our elders and immuno-compromised men and women, have their health needs met.

We want each of you to know that we are still fully operational, although following specific changes adhering to CDC and Government guidelines regarding healthcare communities.

There are 184 Communities of Independent, Assisted and Skilled Nursing as well as 122 Private Duty companies in our territory that we have partnered with, screened, and evaluated to find the best and safest choice for individual care needs and financial disposition. We have identified that some of our top providers are experiencing extreme staffing challenges associated with the current volume of rapid hospital discharges.

During this time, CarePatrol continues to evolve and develop. We are still evaluating care needs and educating and are doing so primarily through phone calls, FaceTime and Skype. And the communities, whom we have built strong relationships with over the last seven years are willing to do virtual tours of their communities and care options.

As we walk with you, we promise you to lead by our values of being trustworthy, empathetic, accountable, united and passionate.

To all our healthcare partners and care providers; we know on any given day your stress level can be overwhelming. It is every day that each of you wakes with a commitment and compassion to serve.

In the wake of this impact, we cannot begin to understand the level of concern that you must now carry for your patients and peers, not to mention the added worry of your own families as you walk into the risk of exposure and potential quarantine.

Please know that our Team is ready to support your efforts as well as advocate for your seniors and families during this critical time and always.

We are here for you in this time of anxiety and unknown, so please contact your local CarePatrol Team today.

Rising Costs for Senior Adults Aging-In-Place at Home

According to a recent AARP survey, 3 out of 4 adults over age 50 wish to stay in their homes and communities as they age. This concept of aging in place is certainly not a new one and it makes great sense for many, however, cost considerations do weigh heavily for many older adults when it comes to health, safety, independence, and comfort. 

With our generation expected to live longer than those before us, older adults will inevitably face more age-related challenges such as: 

  • Cognitive changes 
  • Balance and fall risks
  • Visual acuity and hearing loss
  • Increased risks for disease and illness 
  • Decreased muscle mass, strength, mobility and endurance 

Frequently, it is the non-skilled care and supports that are required for meeting the needs of daily living (ADLs) which include general self-care such as bathing, dressing, toileting, eating and mobility as well as other quality of life basics for instance transportation, shopping, socializing and home maintenance. 

“Considering that most people want to stay in their homes as they grow older and 65-year-olds today have a 70 percent chance of needing some type of long term care services in their remaining years, it’s evident that planning for how to pay for long term care is now more urgent than ever,” said Gordon Saunders, Senior Brand Marketing Manager at Genworth who manages their Cost of Care Survey.

Regularly assessed should be their preferred lifestyle, finances and care needs as individual preferences and needs are likely to change over time. One key factor not to overlook is the escalating cost for care and support. Whether you or your loved one is considering options for current or future care and support within or out of the home, the annual look at care costs recorded for this year is quite interesting. 

Surprisingly, as revealed by the 2019 Genworth Cost of Care Survey, there have been significant changes over the last year when it comes to comparing costs for care and support. Evaluated were the categories of Homemaker Services, Home Health Aide, Adult Day Health Care, Assisted Living Facility, as well as both private and semi-private rooms in a Skilled Nursing Home. 

These unexpected national findings are notable for those who may be considering a budget and planning for where to obtain their care and support. Detailed in the survey are current average costs and annual increases since 2018. Homemaker services which include light housekeeping, cooking, shopping and errands now show an annual cost of $51,480 which is a 7.18% increase over the last year and the Home Health Aide who assists with the basics of self-care such as bathing, dressing and grooming is now associated with an annual cost of $52,624 which is reflective of a 4.55% annual increase. 

While the various in-home options showed a dramatic increase over the last year, the out-of-home options show a much lower rate of rising in costs. Less costly than the traditional in-home care model, the Adult Day Care Health Care comes in at $19,500 annually and showing an annual increase of 4.17%. The 2019 annual median Assisted Living Facility cost is now listed as $48,612, equaling a 1.28% rise. The Skilled Nursing Home now up to a median cost of $90,155 for a semi-private room equated to a .96 % increase along with the Skilled Nursing Home private room annual rate of $102,200 equaling a 1.82% increase. 

Breaking it down to the state level, the Gentworth report reveals 2019 Annual Median Cost of Care for the Sunshine State of Florida:

  • Homemaker Services: $48,048
  • Home Health Aide: $50,336
  • Adult Day Care Health Care: $17,680
  • Assisted Living Facility: $42,000
  • Skilled Nursing Home semi-private room: $102,565
  • Skilled Nursing Home private room: $112,639

According to this recent research, the remarkable rise in the cost of in-home care is primarily due to such factors as the current shortage of healthcare professionals insufficient for the increasing demands of aging adults at home, the direct costs related to new mandates for certifications and regulations, and wage increases across the nation. Finally, with the changes in Medicare reimbursements, there is a higher demand due to post-acute care patients being discharged to home quicker and with higher care needs. 

With supply and demand rapidly driving the costs up for in-home care, older adults and their families need to be educated about and prepared now more than ever for the increasing out of pocket costs of long-term care. 

The Senior Care Advisors of CarePatrol are experts in eldercare and their mission is to educate seniors and their families on the various care options, average cost of care, ways to pay for care. CarePatrol is a National resource, trusted for 20 years and ready to serve by finding safe senior care options at NO COST. Don’t wait for a crisis, call a local expert today to get prepared for tomorrow.

Top 10 Dollar-Pinching Retiree Strategies

 

As a retiree, these are the days that you have been waiting for. You have likely envisioned fun-filled days enjoying your favorite pastimes during your well-deserved retirement. Now that you have the time to do the things you were once too busy for, there is also time to explore how to stretch those hard-earned dollars set aside for retirement.

Don’t miss out on some simple dollar-pinching strategies to preserve your financial resources during retirement.

Top 10 Plans for Getting the Most Out of Your Retirement Budget

  1. Low-cost senior resource options: Don’t forget to check out your local community room, church and library to pick up a good book, e-book, movie or craft to borrow or share rather than paying the higher cost of  buying or renting. These locations are also great places to meet other seniors and find classes or events at low or no cost.
  2. Pay it in advance: Check with all of your regular payees and determine which ones accept reduced rates with up-front payment options or will offer discounts for annual billing. The initial up-front cost might not be easy on the wallet but the overall savings may help you stretch those funds.
  3. A charge card that works for you: Look into which charge cards will pay you back for using it. There are options that you can consider which not only offer low-interest rates but will provide you with reward points, discounts and even cash back. Using that card for your everyday purchases, especially the big ones, may help you pay for that vacation getaway you’ve been dreaming of or just pay for a regular expense.
  4. Put a dent in your utility bill: A couple of easy cost-saving tips for your monthly utility expenses can really make a positive impact on your overall costs. Consider automatic programming of air conditioning or heat for comfort as well as sensibility. You may not need the same temperature at night or when you are out of the house. Additional money saving options are to simply adjust your hot water heater temperature and to conserve your water usage by not continually running it while washing dishes, bathing or brushing your teeth. Don’t forget cold water as an option for washing clothes, dryer balls in the dryer to reduce drying time and consider air drying. As your current light bulbs burn out, switch them for LED bulbs, unplug appliances when not in use, change HVAC filters monthly, use room fans if you have them and keep your home sealed tight.
  5. Check that label: You might be surprised at how many name brand items have a store named option with the same quality yet better priced. Whether it be food, pharmacy, personal hygiene, cleaning products or paper goods, your grocer or big-box store may have the best choice. Also, be sure to take a look online before you head out the door as many retailers are offering competitive online pricing for many options.
  6. Health insurance options: It is known that exploring open enrollment for Medicare can be a daunting task, however it is worth your time to check into which option may truly save you money without jeopardizing the healthcare that you need and deserve.
  7. Talk can be cheap: Most seniors are now taking advantage of owning a cell phone. Consider your needs and the potential savings of losing the landline if you own a cell phone. Compare provider rates for what you need and use; texting, minutes and data. Not everyone needs an unlimited data plan so be sure you don’t overbuy services that you may not use.
  8. Senior-friendly options: Sometimes being flexible pays such as taking advantage of the many restaurant offerings for specials to seniors on certain days of the week, times of the day or associated with particular memberships. AARP has their own Top 10 list to check into including Places to Ask for a Senior Discount.
  9. Drink it simple: Simply put, water is the best option for your health and for your wallet. If you have clean water available to you, choose to drink it. Unless you are on a restriction, enjoy great hydration at a great cost. If you are looking for a little variety give it a healthy twist with an infusion of your favorite fruit.
  10. Florida Homestead Exemption option: If you own your home, reside there permanently and are a Florida resident as of January 1, you may qualify for Homestead Exemption. Homestead can reduce your taxable value on your home as much as $50,000, saving you approximately $750 annually. Homestead exemption applications must be filed with the county Property Appraiser by March 1st of the tax year for which the exemption is sought.

Another where-you-live consideration for getting the most out of your retirement budget may be an Independent Living or Assisted Living Community. Depending upon your lifestyle, social preferences, care needs and financial circumstances you may find a more sensibly-priced option not to mention enhancing your safety and quality of lifestyle during your retirement.