Practices & Tips

Caregiving and Telehealth in the World of Coronavirus

By John Schall, CEO, Caregiver Action Network

Sophie’s dad was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer right as the pandemic shut down started.  There were a lot of doctor’s appointments and tests to keep track of, and Sophie really needed to be there for all of the appointments – there was no way that her 87-year-old dad could keep track of everything the doctors said. The in-person visits went well – the cancer center understood that she had to be there. But when the appointments became video appointments,  things got really complicated, really fast. Sophie got her father a webcam and taught him how to use it. But the first video appointment was set up as a FaceTime call – so Sophie had to teach her dad how to FaceTime. Then, there were a series of registration questions in some app that wouldn’t allow the text to appear large enough for her dad to read it, so Sophie took care of that, too. The next doctor wouldn’t let her join the video appointment unless she was in the same room as her dad. After several telehealth visits, it got easier and the benefits of not exposing her dad to COVID, outweighed the tech challenges. 

What is a video appointment? Is it the same as telehealth? Is this even a real doctor’s visit? Is it covered by insurance? What if my loved one doesn’t have a smart phone or a computer? 

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Patient Safety, Practices & Tips

Family Caregiving is Like Having a Full-Time Job

By John Schall, Chief Executive Officer of Caregiver Action Network (CaregiverAction.org)

Family caregiving can be like having a full-time job. Caregivers manage doctor appointments, provide transportation, make sure medications are taken on time, and keep the home going – to name just a few of the vital tasks that they perform on a daily basis. This can feel overwhelming. To do all this, caregivers sometimes need help. Fortunately, technology can make life a bit easier for family caregivers,
and can help keep loved ones safe and healthy. What’s more, these services can help caregivers stay on top of it all and enable them to restore some balance to their lives.

America’s 90 million family caregivers fulfill so many roles, but it’s impossible for them to do everything.

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