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Third in a six-part series on retirement planning by Denise Deveau, Postmedia, December 3, 2016
Circumstances beyond your control can run even the best-laid retirement plans off course. One of those often-unforeseen circumstances can be the cost of medical care, and Audrey Miller has seen her fair share of retirees who’ve been blindsided by it. The founder and managing director of national consulting firm Elder Caring Inc. in Toronto, says many people she sees simply haven’t put in the work to plan for Planning for the Cost of Care, National Post Dec 1 2016
With many Canadians struggling to balance their work responsibilities with their duties as caregivers for loved ones, employers are facing the challenge of how to step up and offer support.
“Business has to come to the table and take a proactive role. Besides it being the right thing to do, it makes economic sense,” says Audrey Miller, founder and managing director of Elder Caring Inc. Continue… how to suppport working caregivers.
ANNA SHARRATT, Special to The Globe and Mail Published
When it comes to caring for her sister-in-law Bea, who at 62 has had Alzheimer’s for 14 years and lives alone, Janice Kraayenhof has tried to think of everything. She has had medications blister-packed to ensure her sister-in-law takes them as prescribed, organized Meals on Wheels to deliver dinners and arranged for safety assessments to be done at her home in Welland, Ont.
She checks in regularly with her sister-in-law’s neighbour. And, like many Canadians, she’s doing all this at a distance: Ms. Kraayenhof, 54, lives 222 kilometres away from her sister-in-law.
“We try to keep a calendar of her events,” says Ms. Kraayenhof, a teacher who lives in Orono, Ont. “Then I can phone her and remind her: ‘You’re going here today.’”
Ms. Kraayenhof also conducts regular video chats to “see if she’s worn the same outfit all week.”
Ms. Kraayenhof says she also relies on a carefully organized network of caregivers and support workers to allow her relative to maintain her independence while still being closely monitored. She purchases her sister-in-law’s groceries online and has them delivered. She calls in medical appointments. But she realizes that the situation will change as the disease progresses. “She fell a month ago,” says Ms. Kraayenhof, “and she didn’t phone anyone. Her personality is changing. We’re starting to go into a grey area now.”
Long-distance caregivers such as Ms. Kraayenhof are increasing in number. Between 2007 and 2012, the number of caregivers aged 45 and over increased by 760,000, to 4.5 million, representing a 20-per-cent increase over five years, according to Statistics Canada.
The reason is demographics: “This is the first time there are more seniors over 65 than children under 15,” says Audrey Miller, managing director of Elder Caring Inc. in Toronto. “We also see for the first time two generations of retirees living in the same family, we’re living so long.”
In addition to the aging population, “there could be more seniors in someone’s life due to blended families,” says Lee-Anne Davies, chief executive officer of Agenomics, a think-tank on aging. “Our lives are simply more complex.”
In the past, Ms. Davies says, people were more connected to their families and neighbourhoods, creating a natural caring network. Now, fewer people stay in one place. “We move much more than we used to,” says Ms. Davies, who’s based in Victoria.
That puts distance between family members at a time when they may need a lot of help. And many are simply at a loss as to how to go about long-distance caregiving. “Most people do not know where to start,” says Ms. Miller. “A lot of them go off to work every day worried.”
She says communication should be the No. 1 priority for families to ensure that everyone is on the same page in terms of the elderly person’s needs, health status and financial situation. That includes determining what role each family member will play to avoid one family member being overly burdened.
Once roles have been set, an assessment should be done of what the elderly person needs – and wants – for the short, intermediate and long term, which can be done by the family or using a private care manager, says Ms. Miller, who estimates 25 per cent of her clients care for family members who live far away. “Have that talk with the family: What’s happening? How could you do better? What’s out there?” Continue Reading
Interviewed and article by Jennifer Paterson, Benefits Canada posted October 4, 2016. With many Canadians struggling to balance their work responsibilities with their duties as caregivers for loved one, employers are facing the challeng of how to step up and offer support. Support Working Caregivers article. “Business has to come to the table and take […]
Long-distance caregivers of the elderly torn between two locations ANNA SHARRATT, Special to The Globe and Mail Published Thursday, Mar. 24, 2016 7:56AM EDT When it comes to caring for her sister-in-law Bea, who at 62 has had Alzheimer’s for 14 years and lives alone, Janice Kraayenhof has tried to think of everything. She has […]
Special to the Globe and Mail: RBC Retirement Talk, Jan 27, 2016: Read: Aging in place: How to make your home a retirement haven: Content from RBC Retirement Talk Published Wednesday, Jan. 27, 2016 8:18AM EST Last updated Wednesday, Jan. 27, 2016 8:18AM EST There’s an old proverb that says, “Home is where the heart […]
Globe and Mail published January 28, 2016: Audrey was interviewed as part of this retirement series: Baby boomers caring for their aging parents have long faced challenges, from taking on this added role as caregivers to juggling the time demands of work and their own children’s needs. These boomers – often referred to as the […]
MoneySense.ca September/October 2015 by: David Aston Downsizing in retirement can add a sizeable chunk of income to your nest egg, paving the way for more security and enjoyment in your golden years. Just make sure your plan satisfies your lifestyle needs, too. David interviewed Audrey Miller for moneysenseSept2015:
Life after retirement: Health care costs require careful planning Audrey Miller, Special to Financial Post | May 13, 2015 11:44 AM ET Health is the one factor that advisers do not often take into account when aiding families with financial planning. The press has been writing about the greying of our population and how many […]
Part of an 8 part series on Navigating the Health Care System by Alzlive.com Before Barbara Larkin moved her 80-something mom into an assisted living facility in Maple Ridge, B.C., she would sit in her car outside her mother’s apartment and cry…… Read More
I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Sarah Sheard, Editor for “Psychologica”, the magazine of the Ontario Association of Consultants, Counsellors, Psychometrists and Psychotherapists. This Special Edition Winter/Spring 2015 was on ‘Families’. With 28% of Canadians (Stats Canada 2012) providing care to a family member/friend with long term health needs, demands on the family […]
Wednesday, April-14 For Immediate Release Greater Toronto Area, Canada As part of their continuing commitment to high standards of customer care and service excellence, Mosaic Home Care Ltd. and Elder Caring Inc. are extremely pleased to announce a significant new joint venture. The provision of Professional Care Management for those with more complex care needs […]
Posted inIn the Media, Press Release|Comments Off on Mosaic Home Care Ltd. and Elder Caring Inc. launch joint venture to add a new dimension to Care Management Oversight Services for the Canadian Homecare marketplace.
PostmediaNovember 28, 2013 (National Post, Ottawa Citizen, Montreal Gazette,Vancouver Sun) There comes a time in every family where discussions should take place about the financial and insurance needs of aging parents. It’s not simply about covering the financial bases. There are also decisions to be made about their care and comfort. From financial planning and […]
Listen to Audrey’s radio interview on Maritime Morning Weekend Edition, discussing the RBC Myths and Realities Poll, October 27, 2013 http://www.news889.com/2013/10/27/maritime-morning-weekend-edition-9-am-hour-23/
Wall Street Journal: TORONTO, Oct. 24, 2013 /CNW/ – Staying in their own homes and paying for home care as needed is by far the most appealing option (83 per cent) for Canadian Boomers as they head into retirement and consider future living arrangements that go along with aging. This is followed by living in […]
Posted inIn the Media|Comments Off on A place to call home – Canada’s retiring boomers hope to stay put, despite potential health issues: RBC poll
Kris McCusker Oct 24, 2013 02:42:53 PM 680 News TORONTO – Retiring boomers would prefer to stay put in their homes as they approach retirement and begin to ponder living arrangements, says a new Royal Bank of Canada poll. The Retirement Myths & Realities Poll says 83 per cent of survey respondents in the 50-and-over […]
BERTRAND MAROTTE The Globe and Mail Published Thursday, Oct. 24 2013, 12:16 PM EDT – Last updated Thursday, Oct. 24 2013, 12:22 PM EDT Aging boomers don’t want to move out of their homes as they head into retirement, according to the results of a new poll. A majority of Canadians aged 50 and over […]
By: Kristin Kent Special to the Toronto Star, Published on Fri Jun 28 2013 Renya Onasick knows the challenges of caregiving. As a parent, an involved daughter and long-distance caregiver of her mother, Onasick is engaged in all family matters. This involvement comes with a price: the costs for eldercare, a critical component of future […]
Audrey Miller’s quotes: “Caregivers nearing retirement are often particularly affected” “It’s important for all caregivers to know they are not alone, that there are very helpful resources readily available to assist them.” Health concerns trump finances for Canadian boomers nearing retirement: 2013 RBC Retirement Myths & Realities Poll
Posted inIn the Media|Comments Off on Health concerns trump finances for Canadian boomers nearing retirement: 2013 RBC Retirement Myths & Realities Poll
MoneySense Magazine, April/May 2012 The toughest choice: Dealing with an aging parent isn’t just emotionally difficult: it also involves a confusing array of services,from in-home care to nursing homes. By David Aston | From MoneySense Magazine, April/May 2012 Back in 2008, Lise Hafner and her two brothers sensed something was not quite right with their […]
Family Feuding, October 4, 2011, Hosted by Dr. Gordon Atherley Audrey Miller is the founder and Managing Director of Elder Caring Inc. Dr. Renee Ruiter-Kohn provides various services including individual case management, interpersonal counselling and vocational counselling. Both have personal experience of family caregiving. They describe their work and the services they provide for families […]
By: Alison Dunn Health Local November 5, 2010 Aging parents often mean the adult children have to take on the role of caregiver. Do you know how to cope with the changes age brings? When Audrey Miller meets with a new family looking to discuss elder care options, she often hears the same refrain: “You […]
By: Michelle Roberts Esperanza Magazine Spring 2011 [excerpt from “Sandwich Stress] Julie H. knows all too well how hard it can be to juggle the needs of older relatives and kids at home. She recalls one moment in particular when she was squeezed between competing needs: “I was breastfeeding my baby, trying to chase my […]
Vocational Rehabilitation Association of Canada Magazine Spring 2009 Audrey Miller is an entrepreneur who has moved from a rehabilitation practice into new territory: eldercare. Although Miller has both a bachelor and master’s degree in social work and is a Canadian Certified Life Care Planner, her roots are in vocational rehabilitation. She has her Canadian Certified […]
The Compassionate Employer- National Post October 2004By: Meg Federico The National Post’s Family Caregiver News Magazine Fall 2004 Dennis Fielding, Vice President of Kingsway Financial Services in Ontario knows first hand how stressful caregiving can be. Married, with a demanding career and three teen aged sons, Fielding found himself taking on more and more responsibility […]
By: Leslie Young Chatelaine Magazine, Chatelaine.com October 2006 Millions of Canadian daughters should be prepared to return to the nest to look after an aging parent. In fact, in addition to handling a full-time job and raising children, women in a caregiver role can count on spending twice as many hours a month(29)looking after a […]
By: Paul Irish Toronto Star, thestar.com January 18, 2007 Officially, they’re called baby boomers – that huge bubble of kids born on the heels of World War II. But now, with the majority of them firmly entrenched in middle age, they’re being redubbed the “sandwich generation.” As the name suggests, they’re stuck between caring for […]
By: Sherri Nefsky The Canadian Jewish News February 10, 2005 It is hard to know when it is time to start worrying about the health and well being of aging parents and relatives. When is forgetting where they put something a cause for concern and when is it simply a lapse? When are changes in […]
By: Linda Stuart Women’s Health Matters August 2007 You’re not alone, there are resources to help — and it’s vital to take care of yourself, too. These were some of the words of wisdom offered to caregivers looking after older family members, during a session on eldercare at the 2007 Women’s Health Matters Forum & Expo […]
OANHSS News Winter 2007 “Caregiving isn’t like retirement planning,” says Bob Spence, owner of an eldercare consulting service in Toronto. “It’s not something that people think about until they absolutely need to.” In fact most family caregivers often only seek help when they are burned out and looking for assistance. Fortunately, help is available. The […]
The City of Toronto and community partners would like your input into the development of the next Toronto Seniors Strategy to improve City services for older Torontonians and make Toronto the most caring, respectful and inclusive age-friendly city in the world.
The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) was asked to consider a situation where spouses A and B jointly acquired foreign property for $150,000. A paid $75,000 in cash and gave $75,000 to his spouse to jointly buy the property. The question asked was how would the income and gains be shown...
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