Preparing for Move-In

checklistMy checklists have checklists (and that’s on a normal day).

Preparing for Robert moving in? Let’s just say my checklists are having a tough time keeping up.

Preparations are well under way and tasks are being crossed off the list at pretty good clip!

I started the move prep by creating a checklist (shocker). I quickly found that a move date of “sometime in April” was not going to work with transferring prescriptions, supplies, benefits and transportation to Day Program.

After confirming that Robert would have a supply of all medications for at least two weeks into April, I chose April 1 as the official move-in date. We’re actually moving him in Saturday, March 30, but it was simpler to choose the first of the month as the “official” date.

My checklist included notifications:

The Regional Center (which helps provide Robert certain benefits and who I consider my safety net);

New Home;

Social Security;

Medi-Cal;

Day Program;

Doctor (GP);

Neurologist;

Of course, before these notifications, I talked to Other Brother about Robert moving in. I explained my rationale for moving him in here (let’s be real: we have to cut out the middle man, aka, New Home). I explained the extra assistance we will get (Robert would qualify for In-Home Support Services as well as respite care through the Regional Center).

Other Brother said it sounded like we had it all planned out. His only bit of advice: keep the puppy away from Robert’s turkey sandwiches!  (Good thinking!).

After the notifications, I worked at transferring medical supplies and prescriptions and setting up transportation to and from Day Program. Fortunately, we will be able to keep Robert at his Day Program which he loves. I wasn’t able to get very far when talking directly to the transport company because Regional Center hadn’t yet notified them of the change. I went back to Regional Center (thank goodness for email) and made a second request to get that transferred. I want to be prepared for when the transport will arrive so Robert can be ready!

The Regional Center advised me to contact In-Home Supportive Services immediately so we could get those services started as soon as possible. I called and was able to get the application started over the phone. There will be a form for the doctor to complete as well as an in-home interview but once those are done, we should be able to get a little extra help.

I realized during this move process how grateful I am for being a control freak (I keep telling my husband that’s a positive characteristic!). Maintaining control over a few items when Robert moved into New Home has now saved me an enormous amount of time.

I realized how much easier the move to our house is because I have Durable Power of Attorney and maintained that instead of transferring that over to New Home (yikes, can you imagine?).

My favorite time-saver has been becoming Robert’s Representative Payee at Social Security (and not transferring it to New Home). Since Social Security doesn’t recognize DPOA, I cannot recommend this enough. It allows me to talk to a Social Security representative and make address changes on Robert’s behalf – over the phone! I am sure it would have been a nightmare trying to transfer it back to me if I had given New Home this authority.

Unfortunately, you have to go to a Social Security office to first sign up to become a Representative Payee (make an appointment if possible to reduce the wait). Once you have done that and are approved, it will be rare you will have to return to an office! For more information on the program, visit here.

I am also grateful for changing Robert’s GP last summer from the one provided through New Home. Aside from being extremely unhappy with the New Home doctor (oh yeah, he was incompetent!), this has proved beneficial in more ways than I could have imagined at the time. I am grateful I don’t have to spend the time finding a new doctor while doing all the other move preparation.

Transferring the prescriptions has been my number one worry and that is going to be a post all by itself. (Everyone knows my worry can take up many, many pages.)

For now, I have to cross a few things off my checklist and get busy training the puppy to keep his paws off Robert’s food!

Profile photo of Trish

About Trish

I am Robert’s older sister and a freelance writer and am also a full-time Legal Administrator for a wonderful law firm (no, that is not an oxymoron). I am the caregiver for my youngest brother, Robert, who has suffered from uncontrolled epilepsy his entire life. In his late-40s now, he lives with me and my husband. I have somehow managed to navigate the maze of social services and government programs available to help Robert and continue to be amazed at the amount of time and persistence that is needed to do so. Robert finds happiness in simple pleasures like doing word search puzzles and watching his favorite shows (Family Feud and Jeopardy, of course!)

13 thoughts on “Preparing for Move-In

  1. MariaKeil

    Trish,
    Sounds like you are making progress! Having a list always helps me as well. Often times if I have a list of things to do that today and not one very big list I do better.
    Maria Keil

    Reply
  2. Richard

    Who’s she kidding, she maintains control of everything. It is trus however, her list do have list. OK, so she’s straight forward in her post. My biggest issue as Trish knows is to confirm “ASAP” the following items:

    1) We (she) can reorder Robert’s Meds when needed.
    2) He is approved at and new doctor has copies of Robert’s medical history.
    3) This is major, Robert can still attend his day program.

    If these three items are ready and in place, we can move him in at anytime. I’ll drive him to/from program and provide, drive, clean, build or perform any other task he needs until we get the final approvals but these three items need to be set up and approved. I’m thinking about getting or making a banner for the garage door that says “Welcome Home Robert” for the day he moves in to welcome him to his new home, I think it’s a good idea.

    Reply
    • Profile photo of TrishTrish Post author

      I think that’s a good idea too and wonder if Robert will think it’s “nice” or “excellent” – my money is on “excellent!” I couldn’t do this without your support, hon, so am grateful for all that you are willing to do. All three of your ASAP items are confirmed! :-)

      Reply
  3. Profile photo of DeniseDenise

    Hi–Your blog post really hits home how important it is to manage situations as soon as they happen. The New Home MD shows his incompetence–bam! He’s gone. You need to manage Robert’s Social Security benefits–bam! You get representative payee.

    It’s good to take care of business!!

    This is all very exciting. Thanks for keeping us posted.

    Reply
    • Profile photo of TrishTrish Post author

      I like that perspective, Denise! It does help to handle things as they come up because you never know just how much that will help down the road.

      Reply
  4. Profile photo of G-JG-J

    You are so organized Trish! Like you, I make lists and the really help!

    I love Richard’s idea of the welcome banner! Awesome!

    I’ve been meaning to ask you, what about the medications has you nervous? Is it administering them on time, ordering them, both, or something else? I can share with you what I do for keeping track of the meds. For us, timeliness isn’t a critical issue. Thank goodness because sometimes one of the three sets of pills have been missed for the day! Will you be using a mail order pharmacy or one you will go to in person? If it’s one you will see in person, develop a relationship with them and only use one pharmacy. Without our pharmacy we would have had drug interaction issues more than once.

    Reply
    • Trish

      Oh the meds! I would love to see any medication checklist you have (and @ejourneys too – she has offered in the past). I won’t turn down help! I created a med checklist yesterday but would love to see others who have done this before me. I’m going to the pharmacy @kreisler uses so they know us. My worry: that I will run out and he won’t have the meds he needs and those consequences are extreme/dire. I’m fairly confident this is an unrealistic worry but I guess my brain needed to worry about something regarding this move and the meds are it!

      I’ll put this in my medication post but will share this with you now: some of the meds have already been sent to the pharmacy and were ready yesterday. Once I got home, one of them was a different color than I’m used to and, after doing a bit of research to see why, realized they gave me the wrong one (they gave me Depakote ER instead of Depakote DR). When I called, the pharmacy told me there wasn’t a difference – WRONG! After being on hold for a minute, she got back on the phone to tell me they’d have the corrected script ready in 20 minutes. :-)

      So . . . I have to be extremely vigilant with the meds.

      Thank you for your support!

      Reply
      • Profile photo of DeniseDenise

        I totally understand the stress about the meds.

        I wonder: Would you feel comfortable talking out your worries with one of the pharmacists you really like? Perhaps is you spell out your worst fear (you run out of meds), then he or she could help you with a back-up plan–just in case.

        And, we’re here to help. We also are here to remind you that we have absolute and total confidence in you. :)

        Reply
  5. Profile photo of ejourneysejourneys

    Hi, Trish — I love your checklists and advance preparation! And yay for having and holding onto DPOA and RP!

    I’ve turned my partner’s latest meds (etc.) checklist into a .jpg and will post in a separate entry.

    I like Denise’s idea of talking to the pharmacist and hashing out worries and details. The only item I can think of (if you haven’t already done it) is getting (for yourself; I know the new doc has) all of Robert’s records from New Home, including the office notes kept by his former GP.

    You and Richard are a great team. Love the banner! :D

    Reply

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