Assisting Your Parents

Are you prepared when your parents are in crisis?

March 14, 2022

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I'm Asha, I'm here to help you navigate the Estate Planning Journey and to share what I learn with others along the way!

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When there is an emergency, children should not have to investigate their Parent’s medical information like they are on a CSI episode! Making things readily available and updated will go a long way in providing peace of mind for everyone. When an emergency does occur, you’ll have one less thing to worry about and can focus on getting your parents the help you need because you’ve already taken care of the details.

Perhaps these tips can help you keep organized and prepared as you navigate your parents’ medical care:

STEP 1. HAVE THE DISCUSSION:

Speak to your parents about what they would like to happen if there is an Extended Stay in the Hospital. Discuss what items they want to bring, who to notify, what services need to be suspended, any notes for cancellations and rescheduling appointments, and arrangements for pets.

STEP 2. CREATE AN EMERGENCY FOLDER:

Include basic information: name, address, birth date, allergies, and emergency contacts, known medical conditions, a list of their medications, vitamins and supplements, the names of their Providers, preferred Pharmacy, and copies of their Insurance.  This “Folder” can even be a shared google doc.

STEP 3. PLAY DETECTIVE WHEN VISITING:

If your parents are reluctant to discuss things, look around the home.  See what kind of items they rely on everyday : shower bench, sleep machine, eyeglasses..etc.  Check the fridge, notice what their go-to snacks and meals are.  Ask them if you can at least take a picture of their most recent prescriptions. Then go ahead and Google Away!  You can get a ton of useful information: dosages and medication instructions, the doctor prescribing the medication and their phone number, the pharmacy where medication records are kept, and some insight into their conditions and symptoms.

“Never Forget The Hands That Raised You”

STEP 4:  PACK A HOSPITAL OR “STAYING AT MY HOUSE” BAG:

No one wants to try and pack a suitcase while trying to handle an emergency. Keeping an extra set of everything your parents use in a typical day neatly packed in a small suitcase might make things easier.

STEP 5. CREATE A FIRST AID KIT FOR YOUR PARENTS:

Do your parents still have the same Band-Aids from the 90s? Are all of their ointments expired? Updating their First Aid Kit is a great and practical gift to give them!

Some items to include: Band-Aids, Gauze, Cotton Swabs, Tape, Antiseptic Solution/Wipes, Anti-biotic Ointment, Fever Reducer, Anti-inflammatory, Calamine Lotion, Hydrocortisone Cream, Cold Compress, Thermal Patches, Tweezers, Sterile Eyewash, Decongestants, Anti-Nausea Medicine, Anti Diarrheal medicine, Antacid, Laxatives, Disposable Gloves, Hand Sanitizer, Thermometer and Covers, Scissors, Blood Sugar Monitor, Blood Pressure Monitor.

You can even pack a Travel Kit for them in their car.

xo, Asha

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