“Who are you nattering nabobs talking to?” Spiro A. from Maryland … is the question that should have scrolled across the Medicare launch web cast today for http://www.medicare.gov/caregivers/
Anyone gets a point for effort so auto point for US Government. Where have you been, may or may not be a fair question. Caregiving is not new. However this is a step in the right direction.
The one thing the web cast did repeatedly return to and I 100% endorse is the need for information for caregivers. I would encourage caregivers and future caregivers to check out this new Medicare Caregiver site on your own without the talking heads.
As a spouse caregiver of 19 years I found the web cast remarks, mini-speeches, and “filtered” questions and answers to be condescending, and patronizing.
What do “knowing” smiles and words have to do with an exchange about what can you do to get a caregiver to accept help? How about half the people sitting there talking try rolling up your sleeves and go help someone? I would bet there are countless people and caregivers needing help within blocks of the web cast.
When acting Medicare Director Kerry Weems spin doctored his answer to the question “Can Medicare help with homecare”? I turned the web cast off. ANY caregiver knows the real answer is NO. Spin doctored it becomes “Yes, in some situations such as prescribed physical therapy … the therapy must be performed by an approved therapist” yada yada … Or, as a disabled American lies on their bathroom floor from an unattended fall smeared in their own feces or urine because Medicare will not help with attended care, Kerry Weems, Acting Administrator of CMS will authorize payment for a Medicare approved physical therapist to futilely ring the door bell.
There is no magic bullet for caregiving rather it is about your true grit. We all know the frustrations with our federal government when it comes to helping anyone, yet the one thing they do well is collect information. “Ask Medicare / Caregivers” is a long overdue and welcomed jumping off point for anyone’s journey into caregiving.
Caregivingly Yours, J Patrick Leer
(also available in Blogger edition, Caregiver Blog: "Caregivingly Yours")