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Our Monthly Newsletter for Family Caregivers: Caring Compass

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Recommended Reading

  • Take care of your Advance Directives for Health Care, for yourself and your loved ones. Download here today to get started!
  • Thought-provoking and worth considering, “Slow Medicine” is an approach to eldercare developed by geriatrician Dennis McCullough, MD.  In his groundbreaking book My Mother, Your Mother, Dr. McCullough encourages the elderly and their families to make decisions about care in a way that is more measured and reflective, slowing down to balance thoughtfully the complex issues of late-life.  Learn more HERE.

Financial Information

  • The Genworth 2017 Cost of Care Survey can help families evaluate options to address the increasing cost of long-term care.  The data is available in user-friendly tools that review cost details, compare costs across locations, and calculate projected long term care costs.  Visit HERE to access the report or tools online, or download the Cost of Care app from iTunes.


To determine what one is able to do independently, and what level of assistance may be needed, geriatric care managers and healthcare practitioners will often refer to “ADLs” and “IADLs.”  What do these acronyms mean? ADLs, or Activities of Daily Living, are the activities that are fundamental for self care. They include:
  • Dressing
  • Eating
  • Toileting
  • Transferring
  • Bathing
  • Continence
IADLs, or Instrumental Activities of Daily Living, are the more complex activities necessary for daily life management.  They include:
  • Phoning
  • Shopping
  • Food Preparation
  • Housekeeping
  • Laundry
  • Transportation
  • Medication Management
  • Handling Finances
The fewer ADLs and/or IADLs one can perform independently, the more assistance he or she needs.  An early sign that an aging loved one may need some kind of assistance is that he or she is beginning to struggle with IADLs.  For this reason, IADLs are important for family members to understand and observe.