Planning should come first for families with elderly parents

Jasmine Phu

April 13, 2011

Many families are often aware that their parents will need their help in the near future, but refuse to touch on the issue. This can have disastrous consequences. If a senior falls ill without the right estate and medical plans, it can put a significant burden on adult children when it comes to caregiving responsibilities. 

One study by John Hancock has found that 69 percent of respondents had done little to no planning for long-term care needs and it may be time to reverse this trend. The best strategy is to tackle the possibility early on.

Be respectful of a parent's independence, but also realistic. If older adults are becoming more prone to injuries or falls, try compromising by installing a medical alarm system in a home. This device allows users to instantly send a medical alert to a call center in the case of an emergency, which can allow them to live safely and independently.

Also, families may want to consider long-term care insurance, which can help fund nursing services and home care workers who can help with a senior's day-to-day activities while allowing them to stay in their house for as long as possible.