What is Respite Care?
Respite care, simply put, is a break for the caregiver or care provider. Respite care is planned, short-term and time-limited breaks for families and other unpaid care givers in order to support and maintain the primary care giving relationship.
Even though many families take great joy in providing aged care to their loved ones so that they can remain at home, the consequences for the family care provider can be overwhelming without some support, such as respite. Respite provides the much needed temporary break from the many time-consuming and depleting challenges faced by the family caregiver.
What Are the Benefits of Respite Care for the Elderly?
R – Renewal and Relaxation: Taking a walk, strolling leisurely through the mall, visiting a museum or doing whatever brings joy can calm a caregiver, decrease their heart rate and improve their mood.
E – Energy: To be effective in their own work, a caregiver must be afforded time to re-energize. Even a vehicle won’t run on empty.
S– Space: Getting away from the caregiving situation for even just a few hours helps with relaxation and brings a renewed sense of purpose.
P – Pleasure: A caregiver must remember that they have the right to enjoy life even if they feel their care recipient cannot do the same.
I – Identity: A caregiver must be intentional in maintaining a sense of self.
T – Time away from the situation allows a caregiver to see it more clearly and upon return, adjustments can be made to improve the experience.
E – Engagement: Social isolation can be a huge problem for caregivers. It’s important to take time to engage with friends and family by sharing lunch, taking a shopping trip or a walk in the park.
Respite has been shown to help sustain family caregiver health and well-being, avoid or delay out-of-home placements and elderly day care and reduce the likelihood of abuse and neglect.
Respite service gives family caregivers an opportunity to spend time away from their loved one with the confidence that a trained professional is administering professional care in their absence.
So if you are a family caregiver providing elder care to a loved one, the answer to “Who needs respite care?” Is you.
Wexford County Council on Aging will provide qualified and screened direct care staff that will go to an individual’s home to provide respite services. This service allows the caregiver the time and security to run errands, shop, visit or just relax. The WCCOA staff will provide companionship and care, for those in need, in the familiar environment of their own home.
Service Hours and Cost
The typical hourly allotment for the ln-home Respite service is up to 4 hours per week with a sliding cost share based on household income and out of pocket medical expenses. Additional hours can be purchased under the Silver CareProgram.
In-home respite is provided for seniors 60 and older.