Test CarePlanIt’s Framework
Always test the framework you want to use. A framework, or more specifically, an operational framework, is a way of organizing and focusing people. It also optimizes complex situations. Furthermore, it makes the people involved more efficient. CarePlanIt’s framework is targeted at age-related issues.
Let’s test CarePlanIt’s framework, and simultaneously introduce you to how it works, with a common scenario.
Mom Fell And Is In The Hospital
Scenario: I receive a phone call from my sister informing me that our eighty-year-old mother just fell. She’s in the hospital with a broken hip. Also, my sister adds that Mom looks terrible, and she doesn’t know if she’ll make it.
Almost all of us will get a phone call from a sibling or other relative suggesting that Mom may die. However, anytime we hear a parent is in the hospital, it’s emotionally scary. Our first thought is to rush to the hospital. But what if you live thousands of miles away, are on a second honeymoon with your spouse, visiting prospective colleges with your daughter, or interviewing for a big promotion? What do you do? Can you act rationally? Can you react unemotionally? Finally, do you have any training or skills in addressing this issue?
Let’s test the framework. At CarePlanIt, our framework shows you how to quickly address the issues and reach a thoughtful course of action.
Here’s how you’d analyze the situation, once you’ve learned the Five Master Techniques.
Categorize The Crisis
As part of testing the framework, we need to categorize it. CarePlanIt teaches you to categorize the crisis or emergency. In this case, it’s [#1] a health crisis: the fall and ensuing diagnosis of a broken hip. The mother, with physician consultation, is going to treat the medical condition with a hip replacement.
CarePlanIt teaches you how to take any medical condition and turn it into its manifestation. How will it affect the life of the Ager. In this case, the physician tells Mom that she will be in the hospital for two weeks, and then will require rehabilitation in the form of physical therapy for several months. He also explains that Mom will not be able to walk unassisted for about a month, and then will need to use a walker or a cane. A couple of months down the road, Mom may regain the ability to walk without a cane and carry about twenty pounds. “But only time will tell,” he says. Once the health condition’s manifestation is known, CarePlanIt teaches you to look at [#2] housing.
How Does The Initial Category Impact Housing?
Housing is the number one concern of Agers. In our research, 95% of Agers don’t like to even think about being forced to move or leave their home because of a health condition. CarePlanIt also teaches you to examine the housing requirements required by the health condition’s manifestation. What does the Doctor say about Mom’s ability to walk, get in and out of bed, use the toilet and lift weight?
Based on the physician’s description of both the medical treatment Mom will require and her physical capabilities, it is clear that Mom will need the care of doctors, nurses, and caregivers for several months. In addition, the housing requirements look like a hospital, for the pre-surgery, surgery and overnight observation. Rehabilitation and nursing care for the first couple of weeks to a month after the hospital stay. Then, light rehabilitation or physical therapy, and help with the activities of daily living like shopping, cooking, and cleaning.
Are There Finances To Address The Housing Issue
Once you’ve assessed the housing requirements, CarePlanIt teaches you to examine [#3] finances. The finances or resources available to Mom determine how she will manage her housing needs over the next several months. For example, from the housing analysis above, we know she’ll require:
- Hospital care for the surgery,
- Nursing care for recovery, and
- Rehabilitation care for initial physical therapy followed by periodic physical therapy to help regain mobility and strength
Ultra-wealthy folks will often turn wings of their home into nursing homes to allow for in-home recovery and rehabilitation.
For the rest of us, CarePlanIt shows you how Medicare, mostly Part A will often cover:
- Most of your hospital stay,
- Most of your short term stay in a skilled nursing facility (SNF), and
- At-home physical therapy.
The Scenario Is Not Unique – It’s One Of The Most Common Aging Issues Faced By Seniors And Their Families
Notice how the medical condition forced a housing decision that, in turn, required a decision about resources. The available resources determined where Mom would be housed: hospital; nursing facility; or at home. Every senior faces the exact same scenario, and the process used to analyze the situation is also the same. Differences occur when the finances, or resources, allow the Ager to make different housing choices. In other words, rich or poor, the analysis is the same. The difference is what your finances, or resources, allow you to do relative to your home.
It’s not just the rich that get to stay at home. If Mom has children that are physical therapists or nurses, and these children want to care for Mom, Mom can probably find a way to use these resources, in combination with her finances, to stay at home for recovery and rehabilitation. However, CarePlanIt teaches that for almost everyone, the best options are using Medicare benefits for:
- Skilled nursing facility requirements, and
- In-home rehabilitation.
Family Communication Is Needed To Optimize The Plan
Once the Care Plan is generally defined, its time to use CarePlanIt’s Family Communication techniques to optimize what Mom needs. If Mom or one of the kids has worked through the CarePlanIt framework or steps, you’ve learned to pre-communicate the most likely needs of an Ager in an emergency or crisis. You’ve made it OK, for a sibling thousands of miles away to stay put and agree to help with post-hospitalization and/or resource issues. The local siblings have agreed to split any onsite required visits or management needs. Learn more about these in the Getting Things Done Section.
End Of Life Chores Enables The Family To Act On Behalf Of Mom
Finally, the end-of-life chores have helped you facilitate Mom’s needs. While Mom was recovering:
- The child with the financial power of attorney was able to pay Mom’s bills.
- The child with the medical power of attorney was able to ask Mom’s Doctors to answer any medical questions.
- And all the children were good with this because Mom had completed and communicated an advance medical directive plan to the kids that clearly described what to do if she required any extraordinary medical interventions.
Learn more about end-of-life chores here.
The CarePlanIt Framework Addresses All The Issues
CarePlanIt’s framework helps the Ager and their family categorize, prioritize and define what needs to get done. The framework helps focus and optimize everyone’s efforts. Without a framework, families waste time, energy, and money. Worse, some family members get alienated and refuse to participate.
Other Resources On Frameworks
You can learn more about frameworks in general here.