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Welcome To The Sandwich Generation

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 Welcome to the “Sandwich Generation”

By Michael and Shannon Priddy

Many of our friends and family already know why our generation is referred to as the “Sandwich Generation”. Namely, we have the special opportunity to care for our kids and in many cases “assist” our parents or relatives with life as they retire and age at home. While everybody’s circumstances are different, seniors aging in the home requires the love and help from families and, when necessary, outside assistance.  Often this starts as being a good companion but can quickly change as parents and relatives age.

As a Sandwich Generation designee, you have many jobs, whether you’re a daughter or son, a father or mother, a friend or loving neighbor. Unfortunately, there is only one of you and like most families you’re very busy and have many requests for your time.

If you know somebody that is helping a family member or if you’re personally involved in this aspect of your parents or relatives home support, you’re highly aware of the personal sacrifices being made to support these loved ones.  You have many responsibilities outside of this assistance and the mental, physical and time challenges can become untenable.  At some point, a realization is made that additional assistance is no longer an act of love or courtesy but now has become a necessity.   

As you’ve been assisting parents or relatives, or you know somebody who else is providing this support, you’ve/they’ve started to notice changes with the frequency of requests and in some cases, mental or physical changes. Some examples of additional assistance may have included; the emotional loss of a loved one, difficulty in getting up from the dinner table, the refrigerator has many items past their due dates, names or dates may be difficult to remember, driving has an element of adventure or medication management wasn’t adhered to. In some cases, the home isn’t being cleaned, personal hygiene isn’t as it should be or the stove has been left on.

You start and finish life as a simple element of demonstrated potential

Home Care can help keep familes together.None of these circumstances would individually require moving into an independent or assisted living facility. But a few of these combined could be a sign that additional help in the home is needed. Some needs require physical lifting or scheduling that may be difficult based upon other commitments that you might have in life. Parents or relatives may be unaware of the time and other challenges that you’ve been sacrificing to help maintain their independence.

They’ve saved their whole life for retirement and extending their time and quality of life in their home is not only cost effective but it’s their main goal. While there is always a fear that resources are inadequate, when is the right time to accommodate the quality of life that they worked so hard for? Assisted living is very expensive and usually requires the senior to hand over the rest of their retirement. This is often realized too late in the process where a seniors’ ability to enjoy life at home is at risk without the assistance of homecare support. Without personal assistance, seniors may expedite the process of moving to an assisted living facility as a matter of safety.

Senior Care at home helps our loved ones to remain in their own homes with independence and dignity.I built this home!

In many cases accepting any help is a big step for seniors as keeping independence is often a sign that they’re in control. Loosing independence in any circumstance is a sign of losing the ability to make important personal decisions. This is scary for most adults regardless of age or other need.  As changes and needs have grown over the last year you’ve recognized signs that help is needed and you’re not quite sure how to take this next step. Let me let you in on a secret “your parents are your parents”.

Most parents are not accustomed to taking advice from their kids’ regardless of the wisdom that you may share. Parents sometimes need to better understand that families can no longer exclusively provide this support and there is often guilt associated with siblings or children considering outside support.  Sometimes a neutral third party is in the best position to provide alternatives.
 

We Are Here To Help

We’re very familiar with this difficult step and we’re used to assisting the family with a gradual transition. Often this is in a meeting that takes hours of gentle persuasion with all involved. We understand the difficulty of independence and pride. Our parents are the foundation of what makes this country great and often made great personal sacrifices to get where they are today.  We’re accustomed to and often involved with the more difficult aspects of this transitions as a neutral party with some fresh ideas to start services that can be stopped at any time.

While some may resist in home elder care at first, most soon realize how much better life can be with the right kind of help.Hey this isn’t all bad, I kind of like this!

We do light housekeeping, drive clients to doctors’ appointments, drive clients to hair appointments, clean and restock the refrigerator, prepare meals, provide assistance with getting clients showered and helping clients get dressed and ready for the day. We also provide nighttime assistance to help get seniors ready for bed, we prepare dinner, wash the dishes, prepare for bed and set a bell for nighttime assistance.

We listen to stories, we play scrabble, we go on walks and we’re invisible when necessary at a bridge game. We’re also sensitive to cultural and religious preferences as our seniors have often spent a lifetime respecting these traditions and customs.

We start slow with six to twelve hours a week and then we find that most seniors quickly realize that, with some help, they can manage their independence better with a caregiver that assists them with tasks that have become more difficult. Our clients start to look forward to our caregiver showing up as uncompleted tasks are competed, a fresh meal is served and appointments are checked off.  If done properly, this transition with the right caregiver is quickly welcomed. Families, relatives and neighbors move from a caregiver back to a companion.

Interim HealthCare - Home Care Services can help to improve quality of life for your loved ones.Our Search for the Best

To research for this company, Shannon and I spent months combing over agencies in the area. We interviewed the agencies and proposed caregivers, we evaluated the insurance and bonding limits, we evaluated the cost and the servicing components. We reviewed the interaction between the caregiver and the clients, we watched how clients received service and how each candidate was selected for hire.

When we asked the question “If our mom or dad needs help with non-medical assistance after hours and we’re unreachable, how would you help them?” in many cases we were met with blank stares. In some cases, we were told that a warm bench of caregivers was available and they could be scheduled on short notice. The caregiver who doesn’t know the client and the client who doesn’t know the caregiver even if available for service didn’t seem like a viable alternative. Parents don’t’ need a babysitter.

While many agencies in the area talked about service, we couldn’t find one agency that had an on-call client services representative that was involved in the hiring process and personally accountable to their clients and the families that were requesting assistance.

We Chose Interim Healthcare

After our exhaustive research, Shannon and I are excited to announce that we purchased a 50-year Franchise - Interim Healthcare which we have expanding into Montgomery County Maryland and Fairfax Virginia. At Interim Healthcare of Montgomery, we offer a concierge level of service for the same cost as other agencies.
From your first meeting with our client services representative, to meeting your perfectly selected caregiver, we work hard every step of the way.

Our client services representative is the first person you meet and she’s the fabric of knowing what is important and being able to assist when needs occur. This is an important distinction as she is personally responsible for the “match”. She understands the needs of the senior and the attributes of the caregiver.

We conduct a minimum of three interviews for each caregiver, conduct extensive background checks, and we complete a 10 bar drug test to ensure we provide only the top caregivers.

Upon our first visit with your new caregiver, we walk the home and carefully verify that the senior and caregiver are well suited to each other, we remove tripping hazards and we create a care plan that the family supports. We guarantee our caregiver or you don’t pay for services provided to you in the last calendar week of services. We haven’t ever had to extend this guarantee.

We stop in and see our clients and caregivers on a regular and unannounced basis so that we can evaluate the interaction of our caregiver to our senior client. Our office builds a relationship with our clients’ primary relative and what his or her needs and levels of communication are. We keep you informed of any changes.
 
 
In addition, we have a nurse on-call and responsive to changing medical conditions that are non-medical emergencies. Our nurse knows our clients and caregivers as she is involved in their review, their services and our client’s medical condition. Our nurse observes each caregiver in the home to insure compliance with the state of Maryland code for Residential Services Agency.
 
We only hire one out of every 10 caregivers that we meet. We know that this is time consuming but we want to be the best Senior Home healthcare business in the Washington DC area. Our criterion is simple “if we wouldn’t be excited about this caregiver taking care of our own parents we won’t send them to you”. We will turn down potential work from clients where we can’t get a perfect match.

Family and Interim HealthCare - a perfect match!Hey this is Personal!

Shannon and I wanted to share with you our experience. We, understand the hectic nature of life as we send thriving children to college, balance our home, our careers and support our community. We understand that challenges of being a Sandwich Generation designee as we support our existing family and relatives. We count our many blessings and seek patience to overcome our challenge. We understand the responsibilities of being loyal custodians to those around us.

If you entrust us to help you with a loved relative, family member or acquaintance we won’t rest until you’re satisfied. If we can’t help you directly we’ll find somebody who will.

We are committed to seniors’ living with dignity in their own home and giving families the peace of mind that they’re giving their loved ones the best possible support in extending quality of life in their home. 

Give Us A Call!

There is no financial consideration for us to meet you and your family and answer questions that you or your family might have. We would be happy to provide ideas or other suggestions even if timing isn’t right. We’re accustomed to meeting after hours or weekends at times where the whole family can participate. If you have an existing caregiver or agency that isn’t wowing you or otherwise living up to your expectations, we would be more than happy to help you make a transition. We have an extensive network of referral services for Trust, Handyman services for seniors, Medical Specialty partners, Bill paying services, Estate Planning and Financial Services of trusted partners. We know that we can simplify the life of your loved ones.

Michael Priddy’s cell phone is (301) 370-6468 and email is mpriddy@interimhealthcare.com  

Betty Weinshel can be reached at (240) 763-6100 and bweinshel@interimgwa.com.
 
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Interim health care provides professional, personable and reliable caregivers for those in need.  Their local manager and caregivers have been extraordinarily responsive to all my mother's needs.  
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