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These days, I would highly recommend, if you’re getting older, especially if you’re over the age of 80, 70, or whenever you think is appropriate – definitely over the age of 80 – that you have a doctor that you can fully trust and rely on. Make sure you can communicate with them easily and that the office will relay the information to them as needed. If you’re not getting that from your doctor, and this is becoming more and more of a problem in our health care system due to red tape and doctors being overwhelmed with too many patients, know that there have to be different models in healthcare.
The good news is these models do exist. There are concierge doctors and also direct pay doctors. Look for one in your local area, call them up, and see what the difference is – how they handle working with their clients may be different from a traditional doctor that you might be used to.
Now, if you’re already working with a concierge doctor or direct pay doctor, utilize them efficiently. Usually, you’re able to reach out to them quite easily, so ensure that you’re doing that. Don’t hold back. If there is something wrong, take action and fully utilize the services of a direct pay or concierge doctor. This is very, very important. One ER visit can completely change everything in terms of cost, so consider if such a model might be the right fit for you.
Being proactive on the medical side is one of the best things you can do to prevent yourself from going to the hospital and a nursing home. Other team members that you might think of are caregivers. I usually recommend that people take a lot of time to screen out and look into a caregiver or a caregiving service. This is because a caregiver can really make or break a situation – this is the individual that’s going to be with your aging loved one usually all day every day, or at least a large chunk of time, and taking care of their needs.
So, make sure that you find the right person or persons. Don’t be afraid to try out one caregiver and then move on to another if it’s not the right fit. Make sure that you’re interviewing people properly and don’t just accept “well, this is just how it is” if you’re not happy with the service.