Many people are waiting for a parent or spouse who is on a Memory Care community wait-list to get the call that there is finally an available space. These days, more often than not, Memory Care does have a wait-list at most communities. As people live longer, demand is increasing.
One great option that most people don’t know about is enrolling in an Adult Day Program, sometimes called Adult Day Care. These programs benefit not only the participants who enroll, but their spouses and children.
An Adult Day Program can help a couple stay together and delay the cost of advanced care for a longer period. The caregiver can get sufficient respite from a full-day program to hold down a job and keep an income stream, or just take a much-needed break. Many programs also offer a caregivers’ support group which is very beneficial emotionally. It’s a way to not feel isolated and to socialize with others who understand.
From the participant’s perspective, Adult Day Programs provide a social life that isn’t easily available at home, as well as a lot of stimulation from live music performances, games, singing, field trips and art projects. Check to see if your program of choice also offers an Alzheimer’s certified nurse. Many locations also offer personal care services and breakfast, lunch and snacks. Some offer transportation. Check to see if there is also a half-day option.
If the person in the Adult Day Program is a veteran, there may also be financial assistance available. Even if there is not, Adult Day Programs are far less costly than nursing home admissions, especially if you use them five days a week.
Adult Day Care can also be a great option for younger adults with disabilities. The social benefits are terrific.
So, if you are playing the waiting game, don’t be discouraged. There are wonderful programs to make the wait go by quickly.
By: Cheryl L. Woodruff, Coordinator, Caregiver Support Services, Cardinal Ritter Senior Services