A lot of today’s older adults were raised during the Great Depression. They lived through a period when the country was cutting corners and pinching pennies. Frugality was embedded in many of them while very young and often remains firmly in place for a lifetime.
So, what happens when a senior refuses care based on cost, even when he or she is in need of care and has the financial ability to afford care?
First, empathize. Understand that when a senior refuses care based on cost, his or her opinion is valid and determined by past life experiences. If the senior seems to be reluctant to the notion of spending money for the care they need, remind yourself of the emotions behind the behaviors. An added layer of difficulty might be in simply accepting the need for care altogether, something that is far beyond mere frugality.
Spend time shopping with the older adult. Costs were much different years ago than they are today, for everything from a loaf of bread to a new car. In the event the older adult hasn’t had the opportunity to go shopping lately, go online to show them current pricing for a variety of items. Or check out this inflation calculator that shows you the value of $100 between one year and another. (For example, $100 in 1950 is the equivalent of $1,166.59 today!) This will help if a senior loved one is experiencing “sticker shock” at the cost for care services.
Plan plenty of time for conversations. The choice to accept home care services is a life-altering one which often requires more than one conversation. Engage in discussions with a frugal older adult concerning the cost-cutting measures they’ve proudly followed through the years. Utilize these strengths to compromise if needed on covering the cost for care needs. For example, it could be that rather than full-time care, the senior would accept several hours of care each week for assistance with necessary tasks at home. When the person is comfortable with their caregiver and sees what a significant difference home care makes, they may be more amenable to increasing services.
Additionally, it might be helpful to engage the help of a third party – a person the senior respects and trusts, such as their attorney, religious leader, physician, or a close friend. Engaging in a discussion with this particular individual about the advantages to be attained through a home care helper often helps overcome any doubts about cost.
When an older adult is ready to explore home care, contact our experts in home care in Raleigh at 919-426-7522. Our professional team will be pleased to discuss options with you and help you discover the one that is most effective.