Weatherford Democrat

July 9, 2013

Alzheimer's group to host Medicaid seminar

Weatherford Democrat

— Staff Reports

Caring for someone with Alzheimer’s disease impacts every aspect of a caregiver’s daily life. As patients lose one ability after another, a caregiver faces tests of stamina, problem solving and resiliency. Maintaining emotional and physical fitness is crucial. Preparation, understanding the experience and seeking support from others can be a big help.  

The Alzheimer’s Caregiver Support Group at Aledo United Methodist Church is a place where caregivers can learn about the disease and how to better cope with the challenges that face their loved ones. Exploring common Alzheimer’s experiences can shift a caregiver’s perspective and show them they are not alone. For many, Alzheimer’s care includes not only challenges but also many rich rewards.

Providing care for a person with Alzheimer’s disease is sometimes described as the reverse of raising a child. Caregivers can support and nourish their loved one’s independence and stability, but cognitive and physical regression will ultimately require 24-hour care. Although medical advances can slow early stage decline, Alzheimer’s remains a terminal disease.

When the patient can no longer live outside a facility, the family must face the decision of moving their loved one to a nursing home or memory care assisted living facility. This is very expensive, and Medicare does not pay for this care. If a person does not have long term care insurance and is not wealthy, they must turn to Medicaid for support.  

Medicaid, for most people, seems like a complicated system. On July 11, the Alzheimer’s Caregiver Support Group in Aledo will host Jim Audet, a senior Medicaid counselor, who will discuss what to expect from Medicaid, how to plan for Medicaid care and how to apply and qualify for Medicaid. Audet is a member of the Law Offices of Michele Audet, P.C. in Weatherford, a Texas-based law office that is dedicated to assisting individuals and families throughout Texas secure financial aid for nursing home expenses or long-term care needs. This seminar will help to educate families on how to qualify for financial assistance through Medicaid and in doing so, strive to explore any and all legal means of protecting both hard earned income and assets from unnecessary spend-down.

The Medicaid seminar is at Aledo UMC at noon on July 11. Aledo UMC is located at Oak at Pecan Street in Aledo. The seminar is free and open to anyone.

The support group is sponsored by the Alzheimer’s Association. The Association trains qualified volunteers to facilitate support groups that office optimal emotional, educational and social support.

The Association can be reached at 800-272-3900.