Saturday, August 21, 2010

Ready, Set, Go: Tips for Moving Your Parent Close to You, Part 2

If you're moving your aging parent close to you, there are endless details to address. The last post discussed some medical and insurance issues.

Here are a few other concerns:

1. If your parent moves across state lines and needs Medicaid services (in-home care, assisted living, adult family homes or nursing home), he or she must establish residency in the new state before applying. In other words, even if your Mom or Dad lived in a Medicaid-funded facility in Idaho, he or she can't check into a similar care center in California and expect Medicaid to pay from day one.

To work through this, some children bring their parents into their own home temporarily, filing the Medicaid application as soon as their parent arrives. Once the application is approved, they admit their parent to the health care center. Other children bring their parent to the health care center upon arrival in the new state, applying on that day and paying privately until funding is obtained. If you're relocating your parent across state lines, the federally-funded Eldercare Locator program may offer help and advice. Trained telephone counselors have many resources. Or google Medicaid (your state) for specifics.

2. Powers of attorney and advance directives are worded differently from state to state. A visit to an attorney in your state is a good idea, so you and your parent can make changes if needed.

3. To help your parent establish a social network in your area, do some homework (or delegate this to other family members.) If he's a bridge player, check out opportunities at the local senior center. If she has attended a church or other religious group, find a similar congregation locally. Other associations your parent has had in the past: garden clubs, the Elks, Rotary, etc., may be available in your area.

What other steps would you advise other Boomers to take to help their parent make a good transition to their new home? I'd like to hear from you.

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