Transportation Ideas for Elderly Parents
Providing elder care in the home can bring up many issues of safety for elderly parents both in and outside the home.
Whether you provide care for your elderly parents that live with you or they still live on their own the possibility of them needing transportation assistance exists if not now possibly in the future. Seniors who do not drive or are becoming less skilled may require transportation in order to have access to medical care, shopping, and even social activities. Part of overall elder care means having access to transportation gives elderly parents the ability to maintain a sense of independence, avoid isolation, and in many cases avoid the need for a nursing home.
Mom and Dad can be fiercely independent when it comes to the discussion of driving and the thought of losing that privilege.
Some have come up with ways to tell if elderly parents are at the beginning stages or are not capable of driving anymore; clues such as unexplained dents, increased traffic tickets, unexplained lengthy absences on what could be described as short trips. When these types of issues arise it is best to take action sooner than later. It may be important to talk to your medical professional about this issue for guidance.
Choosing adequate transportation for your elderly parents may seem like a daunting task, but it doesn't have to be. There are many types of transportation services for local and long distance trips. Depending on the community in which your elderly parent lives, there may be a variety of transportation services to choose from.
Examples of elder care transportation services can include door-to-door, fixed route, ride sharing/volunteer elderly transportation services.
When you are looking to find transportation for your elderly parents you should start with a local social service organization. Many areas have groups that specialize in issues that surround the care of the elderly. These groups can offer valuable information, resources, and even referrals to local services.
When you are researching transportation services for your elderly parents you need to consider the needs of the person who will be using that service. Many of these services are not ideal for people with limited mobility or certain physical ailments. In fact, some may have requirements that need to be met in order to use the service. Again, a short conversation with your medical professional will provide a great deal of information.
Fixed route services are often a desirable option for elderly parents who are still fairly independent. If physical and mental limitations are minimal these services can be ideal. Many communities offer fixed route services for little to no cost. There is not typically an advanced reservation required for fixed route services. However, it is a fixed route, and the stops are predetermined. In addition to this, seniors get on and off the bus independently at each stop and they are not always supervised which is why it is not ideal for seniors with physical or mental limitations.
Door-to-door transportation services are ideal for elderly parents who have physical or mental limitations or like the privacy of personal service. If you elect to use a service like this rides are scheduled in advance and your parent is picked up and dropped off at specific locations. This is ideal for a doctors appointments or diagnostic testing. Often the people transporting the elderly are skilled health professionals that can handle emergency situations.
Many organizations have organized a network of volunteers to transport seniors to and from health-related appointments and daily activities. These programs are usually free to low cost to those who qualify.
More often than not this type of transportation service is flexible regarding where they will transport a person, but they do require advance appointments to ensure a ride is available
When communicating with your elderly parents about such services it is important to broach the subject lightly if at all possible and consider how you would feel if it were your son or daughter speaking with you about such a subject.
The thought of a loss of one freedom that the senior has had for many years can be difficult to understand and agree with. Safety of the elderly parents and others are a major factor in this decision.
When providing overall elder care it is important to consider a transportation service that can discover the specific needs of the parent as the closer you get to Mom and Dad's needs the easier the transition may be.