My 89-year-old father is caring for his 60-year-old wife who is in the end stages of multiple sclerosis. In addition to lining up Arizona government-based home care, meal delivery and anything else, I would like him to have a medical alert device, possibly a wrist band type. He still drives, sometimes long distances, and does not carry a cell phone.
First I would encourage your father to utilize a cell phone. We purchased one for my father when he was 77 years old. At first he balked at it but with encouragement and teaching he soon became accustomed to it and it never left his side. There are some that are made specifically for seniors....no bells or whistles...just larger print and with operator assistance. The operator assistance is a great feature for elderly users.
Secondly it is my belief that the "best" Med Alert Devices varies by location. In our area there is one that is connected to our local and area ER and EMS departments. Our senior citizens have had the best response with this service.
I think that the home care service you employ may be best at answering this question. My (divorced) parents were offered different suggestions/services by their individual physicians. So you may also want to check with your fathers PCP also.
I applaud you for your concern for your father and his wives care. It is so very important that our elderly have a concerned and caring child involved in their life. I cannot tell you how often the information associated with medical care confused my father. He was an alert and intelligent senior citizen. Indeed as I waded through the often seemingly contradicting information I found it very challenging....and I am younger and have experience in those areas. I had to double check everything from prescriptions to billings to benefits. So bless you for the active role you are playing in your fathers senior life.
From experience I encourage you to check everything and everyone involved in delivering services to your father and his wife.
Please share with us your decision on medical alert devices. We all learn from one another.
Thank you for responding, and for your encouragement. My father is in Arizona and I'm in Maryland, so his well being is always on my mind. He sometimes has to travel to Phoenix (I have no idea how many miles away) and cross the desert in his travels. His 2 cars are old and he takes great pride in seeing how long he can keep them on the road.
I'll look into devices associated with the emergency services in his area, as you suggest. If anyone in Arizona (in or near Wickenburg) has experience along these lines, I would love to hear about it.
Please accept my sincere condolences on the loss of your father. My thoughts and prayers are with you.
I haven't got around to following up on your suggestion to investigate local Wickenburg emergency services. I've spent considerable time tracking down and talking to offices that provide long-term services suitable for my father's situation. I made application in his name (at his authorization) to receive a home-care worker who will provide nursing care for the wife as well as prepare meals and do light housework. As long as there's somebody on hand who can handle an emergency, I feel fairly comfortable that my father and step-mother will not be left to their own devices for long.
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