Friday Five Offers Help for an Aging Population

| By Casa de la Luz

The Friday Five is our weekly roundup of web links to smart articles and helpful resources for seriously ill individuals and the elderly.

1. Nobody explains the importance of advance directives than individuals who have been there. The San Jose Mercury News shares the perspective of a few different individuals. It’s a wonderful portrait of the person who has made his wishes clear, the friend who commits to supporting your healthcare wishes at the end of life, the individual who didn’t know what to do for Mom. Cost of dying: planning for a good death, from advance directive to talking with your family is a wonderful piece about how to plan for dying.

2. With progress always come new challenges. Medicine is more powerful than it’s ever been, treating us, curing some of us, and giving people the ability to live longer lives. But that long life has come at a cost. More and more adults find that even after they’re done raising the kids, they end up becoming a new kind of caregiver–one for an aging relative, likely Mom or Dad. Caregiving for loved ones the ‘new normal’ for boomers from cnn.com this week explores the rise in family caregivers and what caregivers need to know as they enter into this new responsibility.

3. If you’re caring for an elderly parent or other relative, or perhaps are inching toward a more senior age, we recommend following the New York Times’ The New Old Age blog. The entries in the blog are always quick reads, and more often than not, an interesting look into aging in the United States. This week Paula Span posted a piece titled An Age-Appropriate Assist. It was a really great look into how seniors are helping each other stay independent longer, providing companionship, respite, transportation assistance, and general household help. Our elderly population is expected to explode as the baby boomers age into retirement; community programs such as the one Span describes will become ever more important to help us support our seniors.

4. Get a head start on April 16, National Healthcare Decisions Day. The Casa de la Luz Foundation is happy to provide complimentary copies of the Five Wishes, a recognized advance directive for 42 states, including Arizona. You can submit a request for a hard copy of the Five Wishes to be mailed to you, or you can fill out the Five Wishes online.

5. For those in the Tucson community, or its surrounding areas, such as Oro Valley, Marana, and Vail, our related site, Living with Serious Illness offers an extensive community directory with categories covering support groups, caregiving assistance, supplemental nutrition programs, and more. 

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