Welcome to House of Light, a blog produced and managed by the staff of Casa de la Luz Hospice. Casa de la Luz ("house of light" in Spanish) is a locally owned and operated hospice, serving the city and surrounding communities of Tucson, Arizona. Through this blog, we hope to offer education, information, and support about caregiving and hospice care to terminally ill patients and their loved ones. For more information, visit the contact us page.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Friday Five: Helpful Links for the Aging

The Friday Five is our weekly roundup of links to smart articles and helpful resources across the Web.

1. I love the New York Times' The New Old Age blog. The entries are so easy to read and always informational. This week Paula Span, one of my favorite contributors, writes about the conversation many doctors won't have with their patients. All too often, we see patients referred to us too late, or doctors who insist their patients are not hospice appropriate. The fact is, we all will eventually have to face the end of life, and it's much easier on everyone if we can have a say about what matters to us in the final months, quality of life or quantity.

2. Medicare Open Enrollment closes on December 7 so now's the time to finalize your decisions about your healthcare options. There's a handy Medicare Open Enrollment website that can help answer your questions.

3. We want to make sure family caregivers are finding the support they  need, and there's plenty of advice out there. In honor of National Family Caregivers Month, Psychology Today published a great article, Ten Tips for National Family Caregivers Month. There are six tips for caregivers, and then four tips for supports of caregivers.

4. Family caregivers are often thrust into the role of caregiving with little preparation and guidance. Know about the resources that are available to assist you and your loved one. Find information about Tucson resources on topics such as care management, financial assistance, support groups, and more on the Community Programs page of our Living with Serious Illness website.

5. Have you planned for what will happen as you age? The time to make decisions is before a crisis situation happens, so that all family members can be prepared and individual wishes can be followed. U.S. News and World Report reported in their blog, The Best Life, that Family Caregiving Needs Likely to Soar as our country's senior population continues to grow. Sit down with your family to discuss your potential needs as you age, and use some of the bullet points in The Best Life's entry to guide your discussion.

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