Can Smartphone Apps Make Your Plans For Aging In Place More Feasible?
There is more to planning for aging in place than adding non-stick bathmats to your bathroom and congratulating yourself on living in Florida, where the terrain is flat and most houses have one story, so you don’t have to worry about the risks of falling down the stairs or slipping and falling on your steep driveway during an icy winter, even though these are reasonable fears for seniors in most other states. The bigger issues surrounding aging in place involve the financial and emotional costs of care. Hiring home health aides costs less than living in an assisted living facility, but the costs are not negligible. Likewise, you might think that you will “just” have your spouse, your child, your child’s spouse, and your grandkids take care of you as you all live in the same house, but there is nothing small about the stress of taking care of a family member around the clock or the resentment that your live-in caregivers will feel toward their siblings who live out of state and brag about how helpful they are being by visiting you for a few weeks every year. If you don’t hire caregivers full-time, you will probably need to hire them part-time at some point, and a Tampa estate planning attorney can help you plan for how to afford it.
When Elder Care Meets the Gig Economy
Jennifer Jolly of USA Today describes a bumper crop of smartphone apps that enable seniors and the family members tasked with providing care for them to hire home health aides and other support personnel on a gig basis. All of them have rigorous hiring processes, with participating caregivers professionally qualified to provide the necessary services. These are some of the apps she describes:
- Alice Care considers itself the Uber of elder care apps. It enables families to hire respite care from the nearest available participating caregiver on an as-needed basis.
- Papa enables seniors to hire social companions licensed in elder care, known as Papa Pals, to provide conversation and social interaction.
- Mon Ami has provided software support for elder care businesses for years. It has recently introduced an app-based service called Mon Ami Companions, which works similarly to Papa, except that the Min Ami Companions are volunteers, whereas the Papa Pals receive payment.
- Generation Tech and Eldera connect seniors to high school students for virtual visits and mentorship.
- Teledoc and Spora Health connect seniors and their families to health services for a lower price than the seniors would ordinarily have to pay.
Negotiating family caregiving relationships requires planning and emotional labor, and no phone app can make it easy.
Contact David Toback About Planning for Aging in Place
The cardinal rule of estate planning is to work with the resources you have, not the ones you wish you had. A Central Florida estate planning lawyer can help you work with the financial and family resources you have. Contact David Toback in Tampa, Florida to set up a consultation.