Are You an Elder Orphan or a Solo Senior?
You might be thinking those offensive terms don’t apply to you. The truth is you may be at this point in your life. If you don't know, you are at RISK! These terms mean you do NOT have a Trusted Person to support your health plans and decisions in a healthcare crisis. These terms refer to the baby-boomer generation, those who are in their journey from mid-life to late-life and doing it alone. Someone who has no family or younger friends to help them in time of a medical crisis. No one plans on a stroke or a heart attack, or other medical event that takes away the ability to make and communicate your own decisions, but unfortunately it happens everyday. You might have family or friends you can count on in a time of crisis, but can you count on them to make the same decisions you would make? You can take control by finding someone, now, who YOU CHOOSE to be your Trusted Person. (It can be a friend or family member, but you want to make sure YOUR DECISIONS will be honored, despite emotion ties).
You will want to choose someone who can help you:
Make medical decisions for you that you have already discussed.
Help you after a medical crisis to recover where you want (ie. at home or in a rehabilitation facility) with the resources you need.
Decide when and where to move whether to assisted-living or skilled nursing care.
Help make end-of-life decisions with your advance directives (living will, healthcare proxy paperwork, DNR – do-not-resuscitate order).
Negotiation, organize and review overwhelming medical bills.
An Independent Healthcare Advocate can be your Trusted Person. They don’t work for a hospital or for an insurance company. He/She doesn’t work for anyone but the patient – who pays him/her directly. Just like one would hire a lawyer for legal help, or go to the hairdresser for grooming services, or find a professional to prepare annual tax returns, a Healthcare Advocate is hired for their ability to navigate patient/clients through the healthcare system with as much ease and grace as possible while saving them time, effort and money. As well as informing their clients of ALL their rights, responsibilities and options.