The CARE (caregiver advice, record, enable) Act went into effect on January 1st 2017 in MN. AARP began lobbying for this in 2015 and it’s been introduced and passed in more than 20 states. The goal is to help ensure that your loved one’s return home from the hospital goes smoothly and to reduce the number of return hospital visits. If you, or a loved one, are admitted to the hospital, be sure to name your primary caregiver.
Why is this so important? There are more than 670,000 family caregivers in Minnesota working to help loved ones stay at home. The value of the care they provided is over eight billion. The help they provide includes everything from helping to dress/bathe someone and managing medications to giving intravenous fluids and injections. About 78% of these caregivers are doing the more complex medical/nursing tasks like managing and administering medications and injections. Most of the caregivers reported that they had received little or no training.
Help is now provided! Under the new act if you are named the primary caregiver, your name will be on the hospital records; you will be notified prior to discharge; and you will be consulted and provided a demonstration of the tasks you will need to perform with a chance to ask questions
What if I don’t think I can do it? You may find out that there are caregiving duties that you simply cannot or don’t feel comfortable doing. Examples might include: you are too small to be able to help your loved one transfer from a bed to a chair; or you may not feel comfortable giving your loved one a bath or an injection. In these cases you need to quickly make other arrangements. This might include: finding another family member that could do it; hiring an in home care provider to do the needed task; or considering a move to an assisted living community.
If you need help thinking through options, give Choice Connections a call.