Senior Health Care Costs Decrease Centers for Medicare Announces

The Affordable Care Act (also called Obama Care) has reduced the costs of prescription drugs and expanded access to preventative care for seniors across the country.  While the politicians have made hay, as they say, with arguing about all the downsides of the new healthcare law, the reality is that I have yet to meet a healthcare professional who will not say off the record that the new law is a step in the right direction and a must.  Certainly as with anything that was sorely broken, it will take time to heal and patch up our healthcare system.  Some things will need to be massaged and changed. But a geriatric doctor also told said to me once, "imagine if every senior had health insurance their entire life".  He told me that he was astonished at the number of seniors who had never had any healthcare until they turned age 65 and went onto Medicare or Medicaid.  After he finished medical school and began his practice he realized that the majority of seniors with acute health issues simply had the issue because there had never been preventive care for them.

As we move into year 2014, Caregiverlist with be highlighting the good news about healthcare for seniors to make sure everyone can take advantage of innovations in health care, medications and lifestyle guidelines that can make for a happier and healthier life.

Affordable prescription drugs are vital for seniors and the new healthcare law delivers this in addition to more preventive care screenings.

FREE Preventive Care Screenings for Seniors Under Affordable Care Act Include:

  • Mammograms
  • Colonoscopies
  • Flu Shots
  • Cholesterol Screening
  • Blood Pressure Screening

These preventive care tests can save lives - and over time will save money for the Medicare budget.  As a result of the Affordable Care Act, Medicare Advantage and Prescription Drug Plans remain stable and strong.  The Center for Medicare Services announced that the average Medicare Advantage premium in 2014 is projected to be $32.60 and the average prescription drug plan premium in 2014 is projected to be $31 per month, keeping with the same rate for the past four years.

The deductible for standard Part D plans will decline by $15 in 2014, to $310 and since the passage of the Affordable Care Act, average premiums for seniors are down by 9.8%.  All good news for seniors.

Speaking of good news, apparently the happiest people on earth live in Denmark.  And guess what they have that may lead to this happiness?  Free healthcare and education, both provided for by their government.  If you don't have to worry about how to pay for healthcare or your college education, that takes away a couple of the largest issues we have in the U.S.A. Maybe once the new healthcare law becomes old news, we can give America's politicians something new to argue about and ask them to find a way to pay for everyone's college education but we'll stick to focusing on senior care.

Plan ahead for your senior care needs and understand the costs of senior care by visiting the Caregiverilst Nursing Home Directory which includes the daily costs of a single or shared room in a nursing home along with the Medicare and Medicaid acceptance.  Remember, too, as you celebrate the new year, that there continues to be a need for more senior caregivers and nursing aides so refer anyone who may be looking for a new job to the Caregiverlist Career Center.

Happy New Year!

Caregiver Stress Relief Photo of the Week

Caregivers employed with senior care companies know the realities of caregiver stress. Caregiverlist invites all family caregivers and professional caregivers during the holidays to take a moment for relaxation with our photo of the week and inspirational quote. This week's photo is of this season's winter wonderland taking place in the calm park. Thank you caregivers and certified nursing aides for caring for our seniors and please refer your friends to apply for part-time and full-time job positions on Caregiverlist.com and visit our career center for additional career tools.

"When you get to the end of your rope, tie a knot, hang on, and swing!"

Leo Buscaglia

Happy New Year Caregivers!

Caregiver Stress Relief Photo of the Week

Caregivers employed with senior care companies know the realities of caregiver stress. Caregiverlist invites all family caregivers and professional caregivers during the holidays to take a moment for relaxation with our photo of the week and inspirational quote. This week's photo is of festive pine tree ornaments and holiday lights. Thank you caregivers and certified nursing aides for caring for our seniors and please refer your friends to apply for part-time and full-time job positions on Caregiverlist.com and visit our career center for additional career tools. 

 "No person has ever been honored for that they received. We are honored by what we give."  

Calvin Coolidge

 

Happy Holidays!

Fort Knox, Kentucky and Jacksonville, North Carolina Caregivers Win Refer-a-Friend Prize for Referring Their friends to Caregiverlist Job Application

Congratulations to the winners of Caregiverlist Refer-a-Friend for Caregiving Job and Win program - senior caregiver Rebecca Bise from Fort Knox, Kentucky, and caregiver Tiffany Clervil from Jacksonville, North Carolina!

 

Rebecca and Tiffany referred their friends, family and caregiving coworkers for caregiving jobs that are available on Caregiverlist.com, and they won free senior caregiver 10 hour training course, lapel pin, and Caregiverlist t-shirt.

 

Caregiving provides fulfillment beyond a paycheck and offers the benefits of flexible work schedules as part-time and full-time caregivers are always needed.

 

Refer-a-friend to Caregiverlist and get entered to win a free t-shirt, lapel pin and 10-hour online caregiver training program as a member of the Professional Association of Caregivers. A new winner is drawn weekly. One monthly GRAND PRIZE WINNER receives a free and fashionable Scrub of the Month (top, bottoms and pair of shoes), courtesy of Scrubs Magazine.

Senior Caregiver Training

Take a Music Break with the iHeart Radio App: Caregiverlist Senior Care App Review

Music provides a soundtrack to our lives and we attach memories to songs. Senior caregivers can tune into the radio to hear today's latest hits, some classical music for relaxation, or some oldies that bring up good memories. The iHeartRadio app allows users to tune into radio stations both locally and nation wide as well as to create custom stations based off of a particular genre, artist or song. 

Caregivers can ask their senior clients about their favorite kind of music from their childhood or throughout their lives and use the iHeartRadio app to bring back old memories. Listening to music together may bring up stories that a senior client otherwise wouldn't think to share with you. Ask your senior client what genre or artist of music they enjoy and then open the iHeartRadio app. Users can browse stations across the nation by genre and see information about the stations before the listen, including the most recently played songs on that station to give listeners an idea of what specifically they'll hear if they tune in. Alternatively, caregivers can see all of the local stations in their city if they prefer to hear local news and ads along with their music.  Senior clients also may be interested in listening to a station from a particular city if they have loved ones who live there or if they lived there at some point in their lives.

If you'd prefer a customized stream of music to a live radio station, the iHeartRadio app also provides a streaming customized radio station option for its users. Simply type in an artist or song and the app will play similar music from its library. The wide variety of music in this app guarantees that there's a station for any user who would like to listen to music. 

 

The iHeartRadio app is available for free for Apple and Android platforms.

Senior caregivers, let us know your feedback on this app and keep us posted if you discover additional apps that assist with caregiving duties and help relieve caregiver stress. You may also refer-a-friend to a senior caregiving job and win prizes weekly and monthly on Caregiverlist. 

-Paige Krzysko

Taking the Certified Nursing Aide Exam: A Story

Senior care is more than just a job, it’s a calling. It’s what we at Caregiverlist truly believe and the staff at Caregiverlist proves the point. Many come from eldercare backgrounds and feel very strongly about our mission, “Caring for the Caregiver” because we’ve lived it.

Caregiverlist account manager Patrick Welch began his career as a C.N.A. at age 16. In a previous post, Patrick shared his story about becoming a C.N.A. and working as a C.N.A. during his clinical trials training. Here he talks specifically about taking his C.N.A. exam.

After my interesting and memorable experience taking the 120 hour Wisconsin C.N.A. class and having my first resident pass away during my 32 hours of clinical training in a rather abrupt and unconventional manner, it was time for me to take the official C.N.A. exam. There are a few different companies who administer the Nurse Aide exam. I took the sample exam through Headmaster as a refresher and passed with a 93%. The official Wisconsin exam I needed to pass was through Pearson Vue, includes a written and evaluation portion of the exam. The two-part exam takes approximately 3 hours and is comprised of approximately 60 multiple choice and 10 reading comprehension questions, in addition to 5 randomly selected skills to be performed during the evaluation portion.

After my class, I registered to take the official Wisconsin Nurse Aide exam and paid my $115 exam fee. In a letter I received shortly after, I was notified I would be taking my exam in Wausau, Wisconsin at a semi-monthly testing facility, which happened to be located on the same technical college campus where I took my nurse aide class.

I came in early to sign-in, and was asked to provide a valid ID. This is important — make sure you have a valid form of identification or they will not let you take the exam. As all the students trickled into the waiting room, we waited to be called into the classroom to start their exams.

I finished the written portion of my exam with plenty of time to spare, flipped it over and waited to be called for my turn to complete the evaluation portion. I felt that the written portion was a breeze, but I was slightly anxious about the evaluation portion. What if I had to perform female peri-care in front of an instructor, would I get it right? As a male C.N.A., you always have a little push back and this was certainly on my mind. However, growing up around a mother who was a nurse and having an excellent instructor throughout my 120 hour C.N.A. course, I figured that no matter what they throw at me I could handle it.

When they finally called my name, I walked into the next room where the skills evaluation takes place and was given five random tasks. “You need to demonstrate proper hand washing techniques, female peri-care, feeding a diabetic patient, dental care, and recording vital signs” stated my instructor. I knew that I could handle all of these tasks, the only one I was slightly anxious on was female peri-care, but my instructor had taught me a way to remember how to properly handle this skill, with a simple rhyme; majora majora, minora minora, down the middle, obviously this is very basic on how to handle this task, but it provided me with a guide to properly perform this skill.

Proper handwashing techniques are vital to remember before performing any task, and depending on the skill may require you to wash your hands more than once. Make sure that you always listen to exactly what your instructor tells you and remember to perform the task exactly as you learned it. I left the testing facility feeling pretty good about myself — all that was left was to wait for the results to be mailed to me, which can take up to 2 weeks. When the letter finally came, I was relieved to see that I had successfully passed my nurse aide exam and was an official Wisconsin Certified Nursing Aide.

Are you compassionate? A team player with a positive attitude, well sounds like you’re ready to become a C.N.A.. Look up a C.N.A. school in your area and get enrolled today. Listen to Patrick discuss becoming a C.N.A. in Part One of this BlogTalkRadio series: Becoming a Certified Nursing Aide.

Current Caregiving Podcasts at Blog Talk Radio with Caregiverlist on BlogTalkRadio

Senior Care: Preventing and Treating Flu in the Elderly

It’s flu season and seniors over 65 are particularly susceptible. Why? Blame the weakened immune system found in many elderly. A particularly nasty bout with the flu could even result in death. According to Flu.gov, 90% of flu-related deaths and more than half of flu-related hospitalizations occur in people age 65 and older.

Flu vaccination is imperative, especially for the elderly. Over 6.5 million people who would have gotten sick during the 2012-2013 flu season, didn't, because they got a flu shot, according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report. The report also asserts that an estimated 79,000 hospitalizations from influenza were averted thanks to the vaccination

In addition to receiving the flu vaccine, there are other everyday steps you can take to protect you or your client or loved one from the flu:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub. Antibacterial soap DOES NOT offer any extra protection.
  • Avoid the spread of germs by refraining from touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.
  • Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
  • Build up the immune system with good health habits. Get plenty of sleep and exercise, drink plenty of fluids, and eat healthy food.
  • Watch your stress level. This is particularly true for caregivers. Stress—especially chronic stress—increases your risk of disease.
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.

If you are sick with flu-like illness, stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone. Influenza, left untreated, could develop into pneumonia, an infection of the lungs. Pneumonia is the fifth overall cause of death among seniors. While sick, seniors will need support from a caregiver.

It looks like the flu if there’s the following:

  • A 100F or higher fever or feeling feverish (not everyone with the flu has a fever)
  • A cough and/or sore throat
  • A runny or stuffy nose
  • Headaches and/or body aches
  • Chills
  • Fatigue

Ok, we’ve got it—so what treatment is there for a senior with the flu?

Flu.gov suggests getting immediate emergency medical attention if the following is present:

  • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
  • Purple or blue discoloration of the lips
  • Pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen
  • Sudden dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Severe or persistent vomiting
  • Seizures
  • Flu-like symptoms that improve but then return with fever and worse cough

If the flu is serious enough, a doctor may provide antiviral medication. Otherwise, the course of action for flu symptom treatment without medication would include:

  • Rest, rest and more rest
  • Drinking clear fluids like water, broth, or electrolyte beverages to prevent dehydration
  • Reducing the heat of a fever by placing a cool, damp washcloth on the forehead, arms, and legs
  • Placing a humidifier in the room to make breathing easier
  • Covering up with a warm blanket

Caregivers should go along with their senior client to get a flu shot. They should also make sure they take good care of themselves during flu season, so they can better take care of their seniors.

Live-in Caregiver Jobs

What is it like to be a live-in senior caregiver? Live-in care does not mean that you actually move in and live with the client but instead is a term to refer to the position requiring full household management where the caregiver will spend the night with the senior and sleep at night.  Live-in caregivers go to the senior's home for a few days in a row and earn a full week's pay in just a few days.

Professional live-in caregivers and live-in certified nursing aides are in high demand, as seniors are living longer while also needing senior care services for more years. Part-time, full-time and "live-in" positions are available on Caregiverlist's Caregiver Career Center

Caregiver Stress Relief Photo of the Week

Caregivers employed with senior care companies know the realities of caregiver stress. Caregiverlist invites all family caregivers and professional caregivers to take a moment for relaxation with our photo of the week and inspirational quote. This week's photo is a blissful evening that takes place somewhere by the warm Caribbean sea. Thank you caregivers and certified nursing aides for caring for our seniors and please refer your friends to apply for part-time and full-time job positions on Caregiverlist.com and visit our career center for additional career tools.

Caregiver Stress Relief Photo Carribbean Sea Sunset

"Do not seek to follow the footsteps of the wise, seek to what they sought."

Matsuo Bashi

Tampa, Florida Caregiver Wins Refer-a-Friend Prize for Referring Her Friends to Caregivelist Job Application

Congratulations to this week's winner of Caregiverlist Refer-a-Friend for Caregiving Job and Win program - senior caregiver Katrina Myrick from Tampa, FL!

 

Katrina referred her friends and family for caregiving jobs that are available on Caregiverlist.com, and she won free senior caregiver 10 hour training course, lapel pin, and Caregiverlist t-shirt.

 

Caregiving provides fulfillment beyond a paycheck and offers the benefits of flexible work schedules as part-time and full-time caregivers are always needed.

 

Refer-a-friend to Caregiverlist and get entered to win a free t-shirt, lapel pin and 10-hour online caregiver training program as a member of the Professional Association of Caregivers. A new winner is drawn weekly. One monthly GRAND PRIZE WINNER receives a Scrub of the Month (top, bottoms and pair of shoes), courtesy of Scrubs Magazine.

Caregiverlist Refer-a-Friend Job Application Winner

Log in