Issues to Consider
Technology and teamwork.
Whether you care for your parent alone or share the job with family or paid caregivers, you need to be organized. “The more, the merrier” only works when everyone is on the same page. For that to happen, family and friends need a way to communicate with one another.
Technology can help your “team” stay connected and informed. Care coordination sites do all that and can be accessed from your smartphone, tablet or computer.
Getting rid of telephone tag.
Having a one-stop site is more efficient than endless phone calls and emails to ask or offer help. Besides being exhausting, you’re likely to duplicate efforts, miss opportunities for help, not be informed or be able to inform, and repeat yourself when yet someone else asks for an update or volunteers to pitch in.
There are other reasons to coordinate care: your parent is being discharged from the hospital or rehab, perhaps, or there’s an emergency (i.e. a caregiver doesn’t show or there’s a health crisis).
Managing your day.
Decide what you need or what you can do. Is it for friends and neighbors to bring over dinner this week, or do you want to make supper for them? Can you run an errand or play taxi or arrange for a ride through Uber or Lyft? Is it important for you to know how Dad’s day went with the caregiver, what medications he takes, the logistics of the next family meeting, or siblings’ concerns, for instance? Perhaps your caregiver or healthcare provider might give an update so everyone can see. You can restrict access to certain sections and decide who gets to see what.
In order for the site to work well, you need two things: the primary caregiver must be willing to accept help and others must step up and volunteer.