Elder Law of Chelsea is a law firm providing elder law and estate planning.
After watching my father and stepmother die of cancer (other loved ones, too), I've formed my own strong opinions about how I want to spend my last days.
If you want more information so you can make choices, you can take part in a live conversation - a web chat - from PBS's Frontline. Click here to see more and join the chat.
By way of background, last night PBS’s Frontline aired their documentary “Being Mortal,” with Dr. Atul Gawande.
Being Mortal examines how doctors can help terminally ill patients make the most of the time they have left. Should they undergo any treatment, no matter how agonizing, in order to stay alive? Or should they try to spend as much quality time as possible with the people they love.
There are a number of so-called "Granny Scams." They account for losses by seniors of as much as $2.9 billion each year. This one isn't new, but it bears a look anyway. We should realize, too, that con artists don't just scam the dodo birds. They can catch intelligent, able people like US, too.
Once we're a bit older we can get tripped up because our hearing ISN'T what it once was, it's embarrassing to admit we don't recognize the voice on the phone, and we were brought up to be kind when our young relatives need our help.
To watch the video report from Peter Greenberg of CBS News, click here.
The second time I watched the report I noticed that the woman was holding an AARP book. It's titled: Outsmarting the Scam Artists: How to Protect Yourself From the Most Clever Cons. At first I wanted to recommend it, but while there are mainly positive reviews, there are a few that say the content is dated and lacks internet examples, even though the book was published in 2012. Can anyone recommend this title? Or another resource you've used to stay ahead of the criminals? Send me a message.
Nov. 19, 2014
For elderly folks, falling can be a major, life-changing event. I remember when I was a kid, my grandmother, Lillian, lived with her friend, my 'Aunt' Bessie. When my dad hadn't heard from Grandma in a couple of days, we drove over to Aunt Bessie's house. Both women were lying on the basement floor at the foot of the stairs. They were dehydrated, disoriented, and each had broken a hip. It turns out that Bessie had fallen and when Lillian tried to help, she fell, too. They lay on the floor for more than a day before we showed up. Both endured long recoveries in nursing homes, and I don't remember if my grandmother ever came home. And now that I'm in my fifties, I feel like I'm a lot less nimble than I used to be.
So here, in short form, are the best ways to reduce your risk of falling and becoming seriously injured:
You can read more about avoiding falls by clicking here.
A new film chronicles Glenn Campbell's 2011 farewell concert tour as he retired from public performing due to advancing Alzheimer's Disease.
Parts of this radio piece were hard to listen to; others were fun.
Listen to John Hockenberry's "The Takeaway" radio interview with Campbell's wife Kim and filmmaker James Keach by clicking here.
Glen Campbell: I'll Be Me. Watch the movie trailer here.
Medicare open enrollment is happening now.
Insurers tweak their coverage from year to year, including plan premiums, out-of-pocket costs, and what is and is not covered - medications, etc.
Check your 2015 coverage(s) and make changes if you need to.
Click here - Detroit Free Press. - to read the rest of the story.
A new report by a 21-member panel appointed by the Institute of Medicine says that the current system for end-of-life health care in the U.S. is broken and needs to be overhauled.
The non-partisan panel included doctors, nurses, insurers, religious leaders, lawyers and experts on aging.
I first read about the report in the New York Times article, "Panel Urges Overhauling Health Care at End of Life." Click here to read it.
The report is titled, Dying in America: Improving Quality and Honoring Individual Preferences Near the End of Life (2014). To read the report itself, click on the title.
Click here to read Paula Span's post about proposed legislation requiring a registered nurse to be on duty at all times in nursing homes that receive Medicare or Medicaid reimbursement. This seems pretty logical...
I shared this link to the New York Times New Old Age blog on my Facebook page as well.
If you answered 'd,' then you are correct!
In my previous post I shared the KSTP television video, "Aging: A Family Affair." In the report, one woman's physician, Dr. Tom Von Sternberg, was introduced as a geriatrician. It occurred to me that few of us have regular contact with this medical specialty, so I thought I'd provide some background.
A geriatrician is a physician who has completed a residency in either Internal Medicine or Family Medicine with an additional one or two year fellowship focusing on the medical, social, and psychological issues that concern older adults. (Source: Donald W. Reynolds Institute on Aging; University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences)
To distinguish, geriatricians are not the same as gerontologists. Gerontologists are scholars who focus on aging research. And while some geriatricians are also gerontologists, gerontologists are usually not physicians.
Although I haven't had a client experience difficulty finding one, I have heard that there are not enough geriatricians to serve the growing numbers of older patients. Have you or someone you care for been treated by a doctor who specializes in older people's health concerns? Have you had trouble locating a geriatrician? Please write back or comment.
This story is one worth watching, if you have an older parent and you're wondering if it's still safe for them to live independently. A Minnesota family allowed KTSP Channel 5 reporters access as they faced the difficult decision of when an aging parent can no longer live independently.
The video includes care giver, family, and parent interviews.
There is also a discussion that includes a reporter-physician and the CEO of a company that produces hi-tech electronic equipment that allows distant children to monitor the safety of seniors living alone at home.
The article and video are no longer available in the KTSP website, but you can click here to view it on YouTube.
Thank you Aunt Jane Ringer for originally sharing this story with me.
Elder Law of Chelsea Drive-Up Signing
William A. Lamb is an attorney in Chelsea, Michigan who practices in the areas of estate planning, probate law, elder law, and Medicaid qualification & long-term care planning. He also blogs about these subjects for the Chelsea Estate Planning blog. As a public service, Bill hosts workshops where attendees gain hands-on experience learning the critically important facts they must know as they - and their loved ones -grow older.