Blood Glucose App Helps Caregivers Track Diabetes

According to the American Diabetes Association, in 2012, 9.3% of the population had Diabetes. For senior caregivers with senior clients who have type 1 or type 2 diabetes, managing blood sugar levels may seem like a difficult task. The iGluco app allows senior caregivers to easily track their senior clients' blood sugar levels over time.

When users first download the app, they need to create an account. This includes basic informationc such as name and email address. Then, users need to complete their profile with more detailed information, such as gender, age, height and weight. Then, users need to set up their glucometer to work with the app if they want it to automatically sync with the app. Alternatively, caregivers can manually input the information from readings as they happen or they can upload offline measurements from the device.

To add a new measurement. caregivers first need to enter the blood glucose reading as ml/dL. Then, users need to enter the time of day with detail, such as before or after breakfast, whether or not they took medication or insulin, if they exercised, how many carbs they ate, etc. All of these factors affect blood glucose levels, so more accurate information will help caregivers and health care professionals recognize patterns over time.

Over time, caregivers can view the average results from all of the readings entered. This information includes an average number for blood glucose, the highest and lowest blood glucose readings, and a breakdown of the number of readings considered high, normal and low. This information can be useful for caregivers to share with their senior clients' doctors during regular visits to check in on the daily management of their diabetes.

The Learn area of the app also includes resources to help senior caregivers delve deeper into diabetes management. It includes articles from Diabetes Forecast Magazine, which range from active lifestyle tips and recipes to advice for traveling with diabetes and tricks for remembering to take medication. 

The iGluco app is available for Apple 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

Coordinate Senior Care Using Institute on Aging App

Senior caregivers need to keep track of a lot for their senior clients and communicate progress or issues back to their senior clients' families. Throughout the day it might seem easy to make a mental note, but it can be difficult to remember specific details later. Using the Senior Care Manager app from the Institute of Aging gives senior caregivers a place to record specific information and share it with the families of senior clients at the tap of a finger. 

When caregivers first create an account, they also need to create a "CareZone" profile for each of their senior clients who they would like to use the app to assist. Each CareZone profile has its own permissions attached to it. As such, caregivers can share one profile with the loved ones of their first senior client and a second profile with a different group of people without either group being able to access the other's private information. 

The basic profile for each senior client asks for contact information plus some additional medical and lifestyle information that can be helpful, such as blood type, allergies and faith. After the profile has been created, caregivers will see on the main screen that there's an icon of two people in the upper right hand corner. This designated area allows caregivers to Invite Others to use the app and access this profile. Once an invitation has been accepted, the other users have collaborative access to edit and update the information in the app as well as see everything that the caregiver posts throughout the day. 

The first two categories in the app offer News & Offers as well as Resources for senior caregivers. The News and Offers section pulls articles into the feed based on interests that users can select from a list such as Alzheimer's Disease, General Health, Migraines, etc. The Resources section focuses on the opportunity to e-mail an expert at the Institute on Aging for advice on a specific home care issue or to get information on services they offer for in-home services to financial matters. 

The rest of the categories offer collaborative care options for senior caregivers and the loved ones in their senior clients' lives. Caregivers can track medication history by taking a photo of the pharmacy label on the medicine or typing in instructions on dosage and frequency. They can set a reminder for when the medication should be taken as well as a refill reminder. This makes for easy coordination between different groups of people who might be spending time with a senior client on different days to stay on the same schedule. 

Other care documenting options include the Journal feature to record any important notes throughout the day, the calendar feature to share important appointments and the To Do area with tasks that need to be completed by a certain day. The Photos & Files area gives caregivers a place to share insurance numbers, instructions and any other pertinent information. Lastly, the Broadcast area allows caregivers to share audio clips for their senior clients loved ones to hear a little message through the app. 

The Senior Care Manager app is available for Apple platforms. 

Senior caregivers, let us know your feedback on this app and keep us posted if you discovers 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

Medication Management Podcasts for Senior Caregivers

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the United Hospital Fund's Next Step in Care campaign have collaborated on a series of podcasts on medication management for family caregivers and health care providers. 

Designed to assist senior caregivers and family members think about the steps involved in medication management, the 6  free educational podcasts are free.

Medication management can be a challenge and especially difficult during transitions to or from a hospital or nursing home or Assisted Living community.  Short and long-term care needs can vary and the organization of medications is necessary to help caregiving services go smoothly. 

Medications can become confusing for people at any age, but then when you combine the switching in and out fo generic medications and changes in doses with memory loss, medication management is even more of a challenge.

Senior caregivers, clinicians and senior care companies may all click to hear the podcasts:

Helping Patients and Caregivers Take the Next step in Care:  Medication Management

Senior caregivers can find tools for caregiver skills and apply for a caregiving position in their area on Caregiverlist.


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