Respite Care

Good day and welcome everybody to the Wellsprings home Care Podcast. I’m your host Justin Currie, and I am the owner and also a certified senior care manager here at Wellsprings Home Care. 

So a little bit of background on Wellsprings is we’re based in Exton, Pennsylvania and we serve the counties of Delaware, Montgomery, and Chester, and we offer non-medical home care services to seniors and also to those with disabilities. And Wellsprings is very proud to announce that SeniorAdvisor.com has named us one of 2020 Best of Home Care winners. What that award is it’s actually presented to the top 2 – 3% of home care providers nationwide. So that’s obviously something we’re very excited about here and we couldn’t be more proud of our staff and our caregivers and just the way they’re able to really go in every day and take care of our clients, form great relationships with our clients and we couldn’t be more proud of them. 

So today’s topic, what we’re going to talk about is Respite Care. We’re going to talk about what is Respite Care, what the definition is. We’re also going to talk about some of the struggles that family caregivers face and the reasons for needing Respite Care. And we’re also gonna talk about different payment options for Respite Care. 

What is respite care? 

Respite Care is essentially, it usually has to do with a family caregiver who’s in place caring for a loved one. And it’s essentially to come in and provide relief for them. And in certain cases it can be a one-time thing. It can be in an emergency or it can be on a consistent coverage basis. 

Respite Care  allows seniors and those with disabilities to stay at home while the home care company like Wellsprings can come in and help out by assisting family members. So we can sort of provide that relief for the caregiver in place. And wellsprings can also provide that safety and security in a family member’s absence. So if there is a family member that’s in place caring and they have an emergency, if they’re going even on vacation or any time that they need to leave, one of our caregivers can actually come in and help out with that and just provide them relief so they can work on certain things in their personal lives. Also in certain scenarios, a lot of family caregivers, they’re working 12 hours a day, 14 hours a day, and just really, really tough hours it becomes really demanding – and that’s when Wellsprings caregivers can actually come in and just sort of provide a break, also known as Respite so they can provide that temporary relief. So the family caregiver in place, they can become rejuvenated. They can have their rest, they can catch up on their sleep and they can come back to work, helping out their family member and be in a really good mental and physical state.  

So the next thing I wanted to talk about is the daily struggles that family caregivers face. So probably the number one struggle would be Stress. So obviously when you’re caring for a family member, in most cases the individual, the caregiver, they have their own personal lives. A lot of them are still working full time. So when they’re working full time jobs or even part time jobs and they’re coming into care for a loved one  eight, 10, 12 hours a day, it can become very stressful situation and they don’t have a lot of personal time, which brings us to our next point is just a Lack of Personal Time

Obviously with working a second job as a family care, that really limits your time with your own family. So that’s where a caregiver could come in and offer respite, whether it be for one day, two days a week, whatever works in the family situation.  

And another struggle that family caregivers face is issues with Finances. So essentially when a family caregiver comes in, a lot of times they have to take a step back from their job they’re working. That’s typically you become an unpaid caregiver. Obviously not a lot of us can do that. It would put a big strain on anyone’s finances to quit a full time or a part time job to care for a loved one. And it really puts everybody in a tough position. 

So what our caregivers could do is they can come in and help in that situation and we could maybe come in and help out during the hours where the family caregiver is working their current job and in certain scenarios, benefit providers like Medicaid can actually pay for the respite care to come in and help out. It really depends on the situation. Types of insurance, whether it’s private pay, long-term care insurance, there’s generally options, which we’ll jump to in a few minutes here.  

Another issue would be Lack of Privacy. A lot of our family caregivers that are in place, they’re actually living at the homes of their loved ones. So there they are pretty much on 24/7. It doesn’t give them a lot of time, especially this can be a problem when they have their own family, their own personal life that they need to attend to and it becomes a very large burden. Even though they love who they’re caring for, it can really cause a strain on that family relationship just because of the heavy demand.  

The next would be Sleep Deprivation. With sleep deprivation obviously when you’re working a full time job and you’re coming to care for a loved one, maybe in the evenings or overnight, it can become a huge strain on an individual. Nobody’s built to work that many hours in a day – seven days a week, 12, 14, 16 hours a day. It’s not a reasonable thing to be doing that on a long-term, consistent basis.  

Another issue would be Depression and Isolation. That seems to be a problem we see a lot with family caregivers, because they have a real change in their schedule and they’re in their personal life. They’re not spending as much time. They’re not doing the activities that they used to do. I’m not spending time with loved ones outside of who they’re caring for and it can just feel like an isolated feeling, like they’re almost stuck or restricted. And even though, again, they love who they’re caring for, it can become very demanding very quickly. And a lot of caregivers have actually reported a decline in health since they started caring for a loved one. So obviously this is due to stress, depression, anxiety, things of this nature. It’s different in every situation but you can tell it really takes a toll on the caregiver that’s caring for them.  

So that’s where Wellsprings Home Care can come in and help out. We do offer respite care services. We have a lot of caregivers, like I had mentioned in the Montgomery, Delaware, Chester County areas. And all caregivers are required to have a minimum level of experience and the screening is extremely thorough so whoever can come out and help is always going to have that screening process done ahead of time.  

Some types of situations that you would call on a Wellsprings caregiver would be for short notice if something came up last minute and you needed somebody to fill a spot just to help out for the day. We do have a minimum of four hours but they could come out and help for four hours. We do have a lot of caregivers so that offers more coverage than if it’s just family members caring for somebody.And also other situations would be in an emergency obviously, which no one can plan for. And also as I had mentioned before, it’s just consistent coverage. You always know that you’re going to have coverage in place for a loved one.  

I wanted to get into some also the payment options of Respite Care. So if an individual in Pennsylvania is on a Medicaid waiver, so that is, they have a hired a family member to care for them and it’s called, it’s also known as self-directed care. Depending on the waiver, they typically will pay for respite services as well as long as the provider is an approved Medicaid provider, which Wellsprings Home Care is lucky enough to be an approved Medicaid provider and we provide services for all MCOs which are Keystone first PMC and PA Health and Wellness. Another option would be private pay and that’s pretty straight forward. Obviously the individual would be paying from their savings account or any assets that they might’ve previously accumulated. 

A third option would be Long-term Care Insurance. Now this is only if they’ve had long-term care insurance ahead of time, then any respite that we can come in and help out with, we’ll provide all the information to their long-term care insurance company with hopes of reimbursement for them.  

And another option would be family members. So if you have a family member that’s helping you out financially, a respite care, it’s typically not too extensive. It’s typically only a day here or there. So it’s, the cost isn’t huge. So a lot of the times, a family member, a son, a daughter, an aunt and uncle, anything like that can come in and help out with that.  

And one other option would be Veterans Benefits. So veterans benefits they’re fairly extensive, so it really depends on which benefit you have and if they would choose to pay for that or not. 

I hope that provides a little bit of information as far as payment options and what Respite Care is and you know, hopefully, helps you make a determination on if that’s something you need. And obviously, if you have any questions or concerns, you can, uh, you can call our office anytime at 610-463-0880 or you could also send us an email at  info@wellspringshomecare.com.

So that’s about all I have for today. I really hope that provided some insight into what Respite Care is and how it might be able to help you. So thank you all for stopping by and I’ll talk to you again soon. 

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