Becoming an official caregiver for my mother

Asked August 20, 2018, 7:58 PM EDT

My 83-year-old mother now lives with my husband and I. A couple of years ago I quit my job of 15 years to care for her. She was recovering from her second total knee replacement surgery on the same knee and had complications. It has now become difficult for us to make ends meet on my husband's government job income alone. I need to go back to work to finance some of the costs of taking care of my mother. She only receives a few hundred dollars a month from social security benefits. On a given week she has anywhere from 3 to 7 health-related appointments and often has an appointment every day of the week. Someone informed me that she may qualify to have me become her caregiver officially and I may get financial assistance to do so. If we can make that happen I may be able to continue caring for her. The "salary" would help finance the cost of driving her to the many appointments and buying her health-related items not covered by her insurance. She receives both Medical (Medicaid?) and Medicare. I'd like to know how she/we can apply. I've tried looking for information but am overwhelmed. Any assistance we can get will be greatly appreciated.

Thank you

Los Angeles County California

1 Response

The opportunities to find out information about becoming a paid caregiver for your own parent (or parents) depends on where you live and what services your community provides for caregivers. In most states and cities, there are only a few programs in which family members can earn money for caregiving but if you make some calls you can find knowledgeable people at your local department of aging, your local senior center, your local Area Agency on Aging, or your area health clinics or primary care doctor. One thing that might help you navigate through those places, is that you could ask the agency if they know of any programs of "Consumer-directed care." "Consumer-directed care" is a technical term but the people who are professionals in senior services will know what choices you may have in your town.