Whether you’re taking care of an elderly parent or anyone else with ongoing care needs, expenses — often very significant ones — add up quickly.
According to the National Alliance for Caregiving and Evercare, Americans devote nearly $375 billion a year in time and money to care for older adults — which is nearly twice as much as what we spend on all homecare and nursing home services combined. The day-to-day costs of caregiving and the financial worries they may create can easily add to your emotional load and stress level.
Many of us at CaringBridge have been there, and now we’re here to remind you that you don’t have to face this challenge alone. In fact, did you know there’s often financial support available to caregivers, too?
Look Into Local and State Agencies
Financial assistance is often available from smaller government and social services agencies. Contact your state or county Department of Health and Human Services to see how they may be able to help. Local chapters of faith organizations and volunteer health agencies can also be incredibly helpful resources, either for direct financial assistance or to help you find available funds.
Set Your Sights On Federal Assistance
There are also federal agencies that might be able to help offset the costs of caring for an older parent:
- Medicare and the Social Security Administration both offer extended benefits to elderly parents who qualify as low-income. The Administration on Aging administers a variety of national programs.
- Veterans may be able to apply for increased benefits through the Department of Veterans Affairs.
- The federally mandated Area Agency on Aging in your county or city is staffed by experts familiar with services and funding sources available to the elderly and their caregivers.
Contact these organizations or pay them a personal visit to share the specifics of your story.
You Can’t Put a Price on Caregiving. Or Can You?
Family caregivers are rarely reimbursed for all the time and effort they put into caring for their loved ones, so it’s important to explore all the financial options available to you.
You might discover resources that you didn’t know existed, but that you may be able to tap into. And lightening your financial burden will help you focus on what’s truly important at the end of the day: the comfort and care of your loved one.
Please Share Your Experiences and Insights With Us
Do you know of additional resources or organizations that financially support caregivers? Do you have some personal stories about the cost of caregiving? Please share them below.