Home Care is becoming the preferred option for our senior parents and elderly with senior Australians and their families are turning away from care institutions and choosing to age in their own homes as nursing homes become more expensive and the death rate in aged care facilities increasing 63% in the last 5 years .
In the past, our culture saw us encourage our elderly to leave their home and move to a facility with other elderly people who required care. But who does this benefit? It suits organisations to have a centralised, managed environment in which to provide care, sixteen clients to one carer appears to be the magic number, this enables economy of scale care giving, but is it a healthy and happy environment for your mum and dad, gran or pop, or elderly loved relative, in the last years of their life?
Care at home is a reasonable, viable option. Being well is all about feeling well, and where does an individual feel the most comfort? Where is their sanctuary? At home, of course.
The Minister for Mental Health, Ageing and Social Inclusion, Mark Butler said â??Older Australians are living longer, healthier and more prosperous lives than ever before and the overwhelming message that Iâ??m hearing is that they want more support to live independently for as long as possibleâ?. With 30% of the population over 65 years living alone, â??this support needs to come from family, friends, government and non-government servicesâ?.
There are many advantages to receiving care at home, including control, choice, independence and most importantly, itâ??s all about your aged parents and their needs.
There are also disadvantages such as social isolation, personal injury risk and elder abuse. My view is that these negatives are present and can happen anywhere, regardless of being in an aged care facility or the family home. It is important that no matter where your aged parent lives, you remain aware of any risks and take action to prevent them or stop them.
The onset of Dementia is one of the elderlys most held fears, the change in the mind that inexorably disables the human being within. So I pose the question, where would you rather be if diagnosed with dementia, in an unfamiliar institution, possibly sharing a room and/or bathroom, or in the sanctity of your own home? An overwhelming number of aged Australians are choosing to remain in their own home!
This isnâ??t to say that Home Care can completely replace care in a managed facility, not all of us have the resources or possess the family home but there are strong, evidence based arguments that support the view that care in the home is the healthiest option for the our elderly parents. Quality facilities that have short waiting lists are also very hard to find, making the transition from home to facility can be painful and unsettling, and some individuals never adjust to institutional life. Why not promise yourself that your aged parents never go there and instead enjoy care at home.