What You Need to Know About Long-Term Care Insurance

What would you do if you suddenly found yourself needing help with everyday tasks, like dressing and bathing?

If you or a loved one has experienced a significant change in health, you could be facing the prospect of long-term care and along with it significant costs.

Long-term care insurance offers a way to afford often costly in-home care services. But there are still many questions about this form of insurance. This guide will help you understand important aspects of long-term care insurance and help you decide whether it’s right for you.

What is Long-Term Care Insurance

On-going care costs can add up quickly. Long-term care insurance offsets the costs of in-home care from nurses, home health aids or therapists.

Long-Term Care Insurance Can Be Expensive

In 2016, Pennsylvania insurers tried to hit their customers with 130 percent spikes in their long-term care insurance premiums. The state responded by capping the amount a provider could raise its premiums to 20 percent. Regardless, the rate hikes were a major hit to seniors’ budgets.

When to Buy a Policy?

The American Association of Long-Term Care Insurance says most people start planning between ages 52 and 64. As with most forms of medical-related insurance, starting earlier could mean lower premiums.

Consider Other Options

Some insurance companies offer short-term care insurance, which is often limited to one year. These plans can be able to older seniors who otherwise might not be eligible for long-term coverage.

Some life insurance providers are also offering long-term care options that pay out a percentage of their death benefit over a period of time.

Health savings accounts can offset the costs of long-term care by letting people set aside money for medical-related expenses on a tax-free basis. These accounts are sometimes called health IRAs.

It’s always a good idea to talk to your financial advisor and family about what plan works best for you. Long-term care insurance can be a good option, but for those wary of costs, looking for other ways to pay for care might be a better choice.

If you’re looking for a way to keep your independence and have the peace of mind of knowing help is always near, get EasyCall, your personal medical response system.

With EasyCall you can create a custom response plan. With one push of the button, our highly trained dispatchers will assist you in getting the help you need right away.

EasyCall Celebrates National Assisted Living Week

Monday, Sept. 10 kicks off National Assisted Living Week. We salute our friends and neighbors who provide outstanding care to seniors! EasyCall is a proud partner in the effort to keep seniors healthy and active.

In McKinleyville, Timber Ridge celebrates the week with a bio-degradable balloon release. Positive messages will fill each balloon. And Humboldt County Supervisor Ryan Sundberg presides over the festivities.

Redwood News has more on the story at their website.

The goal of National Assisted Living Week is to help seniors live life to its fullest. EasyCall can help maintain your independence and keep you living the life you want.

Learn more about EasyCall today.

Three Ways to Balance Work and Care Giving

If you’re balancing a job and caring for a loved one, it’s not uncommon to feel overwhelmed on some days.

First off, know you’re not alone. It’s estimated that 60 percent of caregivers over 50 are also working a fulltime job and that number is expected to rise in the next five years.

With all that’s required of managing the care of an elderly loved one—from juggling doctor’s appointments, to preparing meals—you need a plan that helps you provide care and stay sane at work.

Here are three ways to balance a job and caring for a loved one.

Research Your Options at Work

Many employers offer family leave and will make special arrangements for caregivers like flexible work hours or telecommuting. Reviewing your employee handbook and talking with your Human Resources representative is a great place to start. Also, let your boss know about your caregiver role before an emergency arises so they’re not caught off guard. Cross-training with another employee can ensure someone can cover your duties if you’re taken away from work.

Keep Work Life Separate

As much as possible, try to handle your caregiver responsibilities outside of work hours. Schedule doctor appointments for lunch and plan to tackle other duties after work. Being able to segment your time will help you shift between responsibilities without feeling like you’re being overwhelmed.

Get Familiar with the Family Medical Leave Act

The Family Medical Leave Act, or FMLA, allows you to take up to 12 weeks off per year, every year, for the care of a family member. This is unpaid leave, but your job security remains intact. Rules vary from state to state. In California, the FMLA and the California Family Rights Act only apply to companies with more than 50 employees and those employees must be on the payroll for at least 20 weeks in the current or preceding calendar years. All public employees are covered under the CFRA regardless of employee count. The California Chamber of Commerce website has more information about the CFRA.

Take control of your loved one’s care with EasyCall, your local medical alert provider. With EasyCall, help is always available at the touch of a button.

Curry County Residents: What to Do After a Break-In

Being the victim of a robbery is something you’ll hopefully never have to live through. However, if it does happen, you need to know the steps to recover from the break-in both financially and emotionally.

Here are six things to do in Oregon’s Curry County after your home or business has been broken into.

 

Call the Police and File a Report

If you’re in the home when someone one is trying to break in, call 911 immediately. Do the same, if you arrive home and suspect someone is in your house. You definitely don’t want to confront a burglar on your own.

However, if you’re certain the burglar has fled, now’s the time to call the police or sheriff. In Albion, call the Curry County Sheriff Department at (800) 543-8471.

Resist the urge to start cleaning up police have arrived and told you it’s ok to do so.  Otherwise, you might disturb key evidence that police need to investigate the break-in.

 

Call Your Insurance Company

Now that you’ve informed the proper authorities be sure to contact your homeowners or renters insurance company within 24 hours of the incident. The company will likely send an insurance adjuster to inspect the break-in and make an estimate to cover damages. Be aware, you may be asked to provide receipts or other proof of ownership for any expensive items that were stolen, like TVs, jewelry, or other goods.

 

Begin to Clean Up and Put Pieces Back Together

Once the police have finished with their investigation and you’ve contacted your insurance companies, it’s time to start to clean up. Reach out to contractors to replace windows or fix busted doors or any other damage. It can be helpful to have carpets cleaned or rooms painted, this can help remove the sometimes painful memories of a break in.

 

Reach out for Help

A break in can be an emotionally draining experience. Don’t hesitate to reach out to friends and families during this time and don’t be surprised if it takes a while to feel comfortable in your home. As with any traumatic experience, you will feel better with time and the support of those around you.

 

Review the Security of Your Home

After you’ve mentally recovered from your break in, it’s time to think about home security and how you can prevent another incident from occurring. The best ways to improve the security of your home include getting a security system installed, adding motion sensing lights to the exterior or your home, and working with your neighbors to report any suspicious activity. Apps like NextDoor (https://nextdoor.com/) can make that easy. After all, most burglars will stalk a neighborhood before attempting a break-in, looking for vulnerable houses that will be easy to get into.

Advanced Security Systems has security solutions for homes of all types and sizes in Curry County, Ore. Contact us today for a free, no obligation security consultation at 707-464-1975.

Learn more at http://advancedsecurity.us

California Is Serious About Preventing Falls

California is serious about senior health and the Department of Health’s ​​Older Adult Falls Prevention Program has lots of resources to help care providers and seniors themselves.

In 2014, 208,564 people ages 65 and older were treated for falls in California’s emergency departments and 74,945 were hospitalized. Working to prevent falls in older Californians is an issue we should all care about.

The program website has a number of useful links. Check out some of what they’re posting:
California Department of Aging – learn about programs that serve older adults
https://www.aging.ca.gov/

CDC Guide to Preventing Falls – A community-approach to preventing falls
https://www.cdc.gov/homeandrecreationalsafety/falls/community_preventfalls.html

Stop Falls California – A communication center for falls prevention efforts in the state.
http://www.stopfallscalifornia.org/

The USC Fall Prevention Center of Excellence – Learn best practices for fall prevention.
http://stopfalls.org/

Check out these resources to learn more about what communities and individuals are doing to help protect seniors and prevent falls.

Are you prepared when a fall does happen? With EasyCall, you can be sure your loved ones can get help with the push of a button. Our waterproof pendant comes with a lifetime service guarantee and lets you customize your emergency response. Learn more today.

Making Your Home Safe for Visiting Seniors

Do you have seniors visiting your home? The holidays will be here soon so now’s a great time to be thinking about ways to make your home safer for elderly parents, family, and friends who might be visiting.

You won’t have to start an entire remodel. A few easy steps can help make your home safe and reduce the likelihood of falls.

Bathroom

  • Most hardware stores carry grab bars that easily clamp on the sides of tubs or walls of shower fixtures. You can even get temporary models that easily detach when they’re no longer needed.
  • For those unsteady on their feet, a lightweight safety bench for the tub makes it much safer for seniors to use bathroom facilities.
  • Install bathtub strips or a non-slip bathtub mat.

 

Bedroom

  • Add night lights to the bedrooms, bathrooms, and hallways so your guests can easily see their way through the house at night.

 

Living Room

  • Remove clutter, electrical cords, and any toys that can cause a fall.
  • Loose rugs send thousands of seniors to the hospital every year. Secure rugs in place with two-sided tape or carpet mesh.
  • Keep a flow through the living room by arranging furniture with clear walking paths.

EasyCall is your partner in providing care for our senior loved ones. With customizable response plans and a lifetime guarantee, you’ll know you’re getting the best care possible. EasyCall: help at the touch of a button.

Brookings Residents: What to Do After a Break-In

Being the victim of a robbery is something you’ll hopefully never have to live through. However, if it does happen, you need to know the steps to recover from the break-in both financially and emotionally.

Here are six things to do in Brookings, Ore., after your home or business has been broken into.

 

Call the Police and File a Report

If you’re in the home when someone one is trying to break in, call 911 immediately. Do the same, if you arrive home and suspect someone is in your house. You definitely don’t want to confront a burglar on your own.

However, if you’re certain the burglar has fled, now’s the time to call the police or sheriff. In Albion, call the Brookings Police Department at (541) 469-3118.

Resist the urge to start cleaning up police have arrived and told you it’s ok to do so.  Otherwise, you might disturb key evidence that police need to investigate the break-in.

 

Call Your Insurance Company

Now that you’ve informed the proper authorities be sure to contact your homeowners or renters insurance company within 24 hours of the incident. The company will likely send an insurance adjuster to inspect the break-in and make an estimate to cover damages. Be aware, you may be asked to provide receipts or other proof of ownership for any expensive items that were stolen, like TVs, jewelry, or other goods.

 

Begin to Clean Up and Put Pieces Back Together

Once the police have finished with their investigation and you’ve contacted your insurance companies, it’s time to start to clean up. Reach out to contractors to replace windows or fix busted doors or any other damage. It can be helpful to have carpets cleaned or rooms painted, this can help remove the sometimes painful memories of a break in.

 

Reach out for Help

A break in can be an emotionally draining experience. Don’t hesitate to reach out to friends and families during this time and don’t be surprised if it takes a while to feel comfortable in your home. As with any traumatic experience, you will feel better with time and the support of those around you.

 

Review the Security of Your Home

After you’ve mentally recovered from your break in, it’s time to think about home security and how you can prevent another incident from occurring. The best ways to improve the security of your home include getting a security system installed, adding motion sensing lights to the exterior or your home, and working with your neighbors to report any suspicious activity. Apps like NextDoor (https://nextdoor.com/) can make that easy. After all, most burglars will stalk a neighborhood before attempting a break-in, looking for vulnerable houses that will be easy to get into.

Advanced Security Systems has security solutions for homes of all types and sizes in Brookings. Contact us today for a free, no obligation security consultation at 707-464-1975.

Learn more at http://advancedsecurity.us

Using Technology to Age in Place

Ninety percent of older Americans want to live in their own home as they age, according to AARP.

It’s no surprise. Many adults have spent years or decades in their current homes, and the idea of leaving behind a place with so many memories can be too much to bear.

Thankfully, its easier than ever for older adults to stay in their homes. With a few upgrades in technology, seniors can make their homes safe and comfortable for years to come.

Medical Alert Systems

A medical alert system can deliver peace of mind by summoning help at the push of a button. Plus, these devices are getting more and more sophisticated. EasyCall’s Freedom Stands model features automatic fall detection, so seniors can get immediate help in the event of a fall without having to press the alert button.

Smart Home Technology

New technologies are letting us connect and automate the systems in our homes in new and exciting ways. These advances spell big benefits for seniors too. Already, there are systems available that can automatically control heating and cooling and lighting.

New sensors are available that can detect a senior’s sleep quality, breathing, heart rate, and daily movement to ensure they’re staying active and alert a loved one or health professional if anything changes.

Telehealth

Telenurse and teledoctor services have been around for a while, but these services have significantly improved with the introduction of smartphones and tablets. With video calling now commonplace, seniors can stay in frequent contact with care providers without having to travel to medical offices.

Regular contact improves general health and enhances communication between patient and provider, leading to better overall care and health outcomes.

Technology will play a major role in the future as more baby boomers retire and look for ways to stay in the homes. EasyCall will be there with leading medical alert technologies to help keep you and your loved ones safe.

Caregivers: Follow these Steps to Relieve Stress

Last week we discussed signs that you’re stressed as a caregiver to your loved ones. It’s so important to take care of your own health and wellbeing to ensure you’ve got the stamina to be there for others.

Today, let’s explore some ways you can control your stress and ensure you’re putting your health as a priority.

EasyCall is your partner in managing the care of your loved ones. With help at the push of a button, you can rely on EasyCall for peace of mind.

1. Find a connection

Join a support group for caregivers either in person or online. There are care groups targeted at all sorts of issues, from Alzheimer’s patients to those caring for seniors.

2. Accept What You Cannot Change

You can’t change the fact that your loved ones are aging, but you can control how you react.

3. Reach Out for Help

Most cities have respite and healthcare resources for seniors available. Taking advantage of these aids can give you a much-needed break and can be one of the best ways to reduce stress.

4. Focus on Your Health

Visit your doctor for regular check-ups, stay physically active, eat a healthy diet and try to get enough sleep.

5. Take Time Off

If your loved one experiences a sudden change in health, it might be time to take a break from work. Employers covered by the federal Family and Medical Leave Act can take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave per year to care for relatives.

EasyCall is committed to helping caregivers manage the stress in their lives. With an EasyCall medical alert system, your loved ones are never truly alone. Get peace of mind with EasyCall.

Caregivers: Learn To Recognize These Signs of Stress Before It’s Too Late

Let’s face it: It can be tough being the care provider for elderly parents.

Without taking care of yourself, that stress can put your wellbeing at serious risk.

Finding ways to deal with stress and getting the help you need is vital to making sure you’re at your best and take care of your loved ones.

EasyCall is your partner when it comes to taking care of the elderly in your life. With EasyCall, they’re never truly alone, and help is ready at the push of a button.

Here are 5 signs you’re experiencing caregiver stress. Next week, we’ll look at 5 ways you can develop a more relaxed approach to being a caregiver.

1. Exhaustion

A major sign of stress is waking already feeling exhausted.

2. Changes in Eating Habits

Sudden weight loss or gain are both signs of stress and can lead to illness.

3. Anger

If you’re stressed, it’s not uncommon to begin snapping at your loved ones or family members, especially if you feel like they’re not helping as much as they could.

4. Depression

A constant feeling of sadness and hopelessness are both signs you’re under major stress and experiencing depression.

5. Anxiety

If you’re worried about facing another day or what the future holds, you’re experiencing anxiety.

Recognizing these signs of stress is an essential part of being a good care provider. EasyCall can help you provide outstanding care.

With a customizable response plan, you can be sure your loved ones are never truly alone and can always summon help with the push of a button.

Learn more about EasyCall today.