The American Geriatrics Society Focuses on the Future of Elder Care

With an estimated 20 percent of the United States population accounting for those 65 and older by 2030, the American Geriatrics Society (AGS) is focusing on how to improve medical care in the geriatric community. One concern is the low number of doctors specializing in geriatric care. U.S. News and World Report-Health estimates that approximately 17,000 geriatricians are necessary to care for the growing elderly population, but that there is currently only about 7,500 or more certified in America.

One goal of AGC is to find additional funding to support medical students studying to be a geriatrician. One of the reasons why many graduating medical students choose other medical specialties is that private insurance has higher payouts. When it comes to Medicare and Medicaid, the reimbursement rates are lower. With high debt upon graduation, going into geriatrics may not be an option for new doctors. With more educational funding, the number of doctors entering the geriatric field is apt to increase.

Additionally, there is a focus on other skilled professional fields which care for the elderly. This includes occupational therapists, physical therapists, nurses, social workers, and home health care aids. Often these health care providers must work together to support an elderly individual who suffers from multiple chronic issues. With the elderly, often a more holistic approach is better because much of the medical care will focus on daily functionality, such as getting dressed and eating.

Understanding the options for an elderly loved one can be challenging. Applying for Medicaid and making sure necessary needs are covered can be a complex process. P&P Medicaid provides Medicaid application services. The company also provides a full range of geriatric care management services to help individuals and their families make decisions about and supervise their long-term care needs.  Please contact P&P Medicaid Consulting, Inc. at (516) 541-4770 for more information.

Why Do I Need a Geriatric Care Manager?

Geriatric care managers are social workers, psychologists, gerontologists and nurses who specialize in senior care issues. They are trained to assess, plan, coordinate, monitor and provide services for the elderly and their families. They offer necessary hands-on guidance and services, while allowing family members to provide quality time and emotional support that would otherwise be limited if the family was the sole caregiver.

Geriatric care managers take into consideration a client’s mental and physical health, financial resources and personal preferences. They are a knowledgeable guide that determines a senior’s needs and provides a personalized type, level and source of housing and care best-suited to help meet those needs. While transitions in care and housing can often be difficult and overwhelming for the elderly, the geriatric care managers oversee the situation and work to relieve the hurt feelings and anger that come with losing independence.

Families should consider hiring a geriatric care manager when the senior reaches a point of transition. This can be anything from hiring a home care worker, moving the senior into or between senior living options, and even during a hospital stay to prepare for the patient’s discharge.

There are many reasons to consider hiring a geriatric care provider, as when a loved one develops a loss of function, whether physically or mentally, for which the patient will require assistance. One may seek out additional assistance for when an older family member reaches a need for a higher level of caregiving or there is uncertainty regarding a senior’s living arrangement or health needs. If a senior is not functioning at his or her best, or is thought to be at risk in the current living situation, a geriatric care manager can step in to address the concerns of the senior and their family.