The Elder Care Directory is about helping people and families find the best type of and the best location for their elder care. We believe we can make a difference by breaking down this complicated, emotionally wrought decision into two parts:
- A directory of elder care service options, including a blog with resources for aging-in-place—to help you better understand the kinds of elder care programs that are out there.
- A directory of elder care locations by city to help people find the best possible spot for their elder care.
That’s it in a nutshell. We’ll be coming back to add these directory resources to this site. Until then, we thought we’d share some of our general thoughts about the history and current state of the elder care industry.
Elder care has been around ever since there’s been elders. And since what counts as elderly from one generation, century, and millennium to the next, elder care has pretty much been around forever. No wonder. Most people want their family, friends, neighbors, and even strangers to have the highest possible quality of life in their final years. It was always thus, and always thus will be. Of course, it looks a lot different today—both in terms of health needs and basic living infrastructure. Regardless of age, getting through the long, hard winter is less about the fall harvest and more about being able to pay the heating bill on a fixed income. People live longer than they used to. Cancer was significantly less common if only because people didn’t live long enough to get cancer. Nowadays, short-term elder care to cope with the side effects of cancer treatments is routine.
The institutions and the culture have also changed a lot over the last two generations. “Black-hole nursing homes” have been replaced en masse by senior living communities that emphasize social programs and amenities, comfortable living quarters, and responsive services. There are still the occasional horror stories from negligent management groups, but on the whole, the elder care industry has found that a more proactive and affirmative approach to quality care and living solutions is best. Empathy, respect, and compassion has no age limit.
Nevertheless, we can still fall short, even when we have the best of intentions, often for reasons that are completely out of control. For many families, elder care has to be balanced with childcare, paying the bills, and one’s own quality of life. Self-sacrifice has its limits even when it comes to our most beloved family members.
There is no one answer that’s right for every family, and that’s why we wanted to create the Elder Care Directory.