Caregivers play a vitally important role for family members and loved ones who need help coping with a serious illness, an injury, or with the effects of aging. Unfortunately, caregivers often face a lot of stress as they put the needs of their family member “patient” first, above their own needs. Caregivers need strong supports and the help of the community, both to be able to maintain the stamina to continue caregiving and to help them enhance quality of life for the person for whom they are providing care.
Amato Law, PLLC can help caregivers in important ways. Our firm assists caregivers in New York in finding ways to be strong advocates for their patients and to get help doing the difficult work of providing care. Give us a call for personalized advice specific to your situation and to get answers to questions you may have including:
- How can caregivers get help and support?
- How can caregivers be strong advocates for their patient?
- How can an attorney help caregivers in New York?
How Can Caregivers Get Help and Support?
Caregivers should take advantage of any programs available within the community which make their lives easier. As a caregiver, your family member or loved one who you are providing care for is not only your loved one, but also a patient who you are providing important services for. The demands on your time and energy can be intense, especially since you love your “patient” and also have to deal with the emotional ramifications of your loved one’s declining health.
There are caregiver respite programs offered through both different types of government benefit programs as well as through nonprofit organizations in most communities. For example, the Veterans’ Administration provides caregiver respite services. Using these services can give you time to do things for yourself, to unwind and recharge so you can be a better caregiver.
Services like adult daycare, meals-on-wheels, and similar programs aimed at seniors could also be helpful to caregivers. If your patient can get a meal brought in that you don’t have to cook or can get services through adult daycare, this gives a caregiver more free time to do other important tasks or to relax.
How Can Caregivers be Strong Advocates for their Patient?
Caregivers often provide not just physical care to their family member or loved one, but also provide advocacy when dealing with doctors and insurance companies. Getting the right medical care and getting an insurer to cut costs can often be very challenging. Caregivers need to know how the law protects the rights of patients and what kinds of tools can be used to better protect a person within the healthcare system.
An attorney can help a caregiver to take advantage of resources available for understanding consumer rights within the healthcare industry. An attorney can also provide assistance arming caregivers with the tools they need to be effective. For example, a caregiver who has been given power of attorney can act on behalf of the person who he is caring for when dealing with banks and other financial institutions. A caregiver who has been named a healthcare proxy can act on behalf of the person being cared for when dealing with doctors.
Having this type of legal authority gives a caregiver more authority and more leverage, thus making it much easier to advocate on behalf of the person who is being cared for. It is best when a person who needs care is able to create a power of attorney and other components of an incapacity plan so that a caregiver will be given the necessary authority without court action. However, if no incapacity plan was made, it is possible for a caregiver to become a guardian or conservator to get legal rights to act on behalf of an incapacitated person.
How Can an Attorney Help Caregivers in New York?
If you are a caregiver, you owe it to yourself and the person who you are caring for to take advantage of all resources that are available. Amato Law, PLLC can help you to find out about benefits and services available in New York. Our firm can assist you in both taking care of your needs as a caregiver and in being a strong advocate for your loved one who you are helping. Give us a call today to find out more about the assistance that we can offer.