I am caring for my parents but do not live with them. My mother is capable of caring for my father who has dementia however, he cannot be left alone. I am planning a trip for four days. I am concerned that if my mother falls (it’s happened twice) my father will be left hanging. Does anyone know of a service that offers emergency respite care in the home? Or advice on how to deal with such a situation? I have no family close by, and cannot impose on friends as my father is a lot to handle.
Does you mom have an "alert" device? Some can be set so that a fall would be detected. If she did not answer Emergency Services would be sent. (some will send if movement has not been detected for a specific period of time)
I have seen the Apple Watch on a commercial and that also detected a fall .
Do mom and dad have friends that can check in on them?
Do you have a friend that would check in? either they could do it as a "favor" or you could pay them to check in. How much do you want to be done? You say you can not impose on friends as dad is a lot to handle. But there is not much to do checking in on them. But if you are doing daily tasks and chores for them that is different.
You could arrange a week stay at a local Assisted Living facility. They would have the watchful eye of staff. You would not have to have someone check in on them. And it would give your mom a bit of a break knowing she does not have to all the caregiving. Many AL will do a Respite stay like this as they would want them to become residents when and if the time came.
I was told (where I live) if a caregiver sustains a fall bad/other health crises & needs emergency transportation to ER, without a backup caregiver able to step in, (nearby relative or willing friend/neighbour) the dependant person would need to be transported also - as a 'social admit'. Then a Social Worker would get busy trying to locate NOK or another relative to collect. If none available, the person would be kept in a hospital/rehab bed, even NH bed until other arrangements made.
EMS crew would need to be informed that the other elder could not be left alone.
This plan has a big hole...
What if the caregiving elder could not communicate? Be very unwell/banged their head etc?
Then what if the other could 'showtime' well?
I suppose a sign on the fridge could be made..
I'd try for a friend/neighbour doing a welfare phone call evening & night.
I ended up rationally trying to think how unlikely it was & set up what I could.
Hope you can enjoy your trip 😃
Bear in mind, though, it's likely the cost of the respite would be coming out of your or your parents' pocket(s).
You're right that your shouldn't impose on your friends to do wellness checks on your parents or to handle any emergency situation that may arise. Really though, they most certainly should have hired help coming in seven days a week. Even if it is only for a few hours a day with regular wellness checks from the police too.
There are no emergency in-home respite care service agencies that I ever heard of. Some homecare agencies may be able to accommodate temporary live-in care but may not be able to place a live-in caregiver at a moment's notice.
If your mother falls and gets taken to the hospital, the paramedics or police will also take your father to the hospital if they know in advance that he has dementia and there is no one but your mom in the home to care for him. Make sure they know this.
If your mom has to be admitted into the hospital for a stay, they hospital will place your father in nursing home/memory care facility as respite.