"Hello, (Insert Your Name). How Can We Support You?"


"Hello, (Insert Your Name). How Can We Support You?"

pulse-818378_640(Editor's Note: This is the second blog post in a series called Imagine during which I explore what could be when the Centers for Disease Control and Prevent tracks family caregiver stress and its source.)


What if...

When you bring your caree to the hospital, the emergency room or a doctor's appointment, a social worker Certified Caregiving Consultant (CCC) quietly pulls you aside while doctors and nurses attend to your caree. The social worker tells your caree, "I'm going to buy your (insert your relationship to your caree) a cup of coffee while the doctors take good care of you. We'll be back in about 10 minutes."

Over that cup of coffee, the social worker CCC shares, "We're making sure that family members have the support and care they need. I've got about 10 questions to ask you, if that's okay with you. I'll then share resources which can help you."

After you answer the 10 questions about your stress level and what contributes to your stress, the social worker CCC shares a list of local and national resources just for you. In addition, the social worker gives you:

  • a voucher for four hours of free care for your caree provided by a local home health agency;

  • a free pass for your caree to spend a free day at a local adult day center;

  • a discount coupon to use for medical supplies at a drug store;

  • a gift certificate to use for a local house cleaning service;

  • a list of former family caregivers who now volunteer through a Caregiving Squad to help current family caregivers.

The social worker CCC also hands you her card. "We know the important work you do as you care for (your caree). We want to make sure you stay in good shape, too. Call me any time you're feeling overwhelmed. You also can contact a volunteer in the Caregiving Squad who can make home visits to help you."

Imagine a social worker CCC in the health care system and volunteers in your community checking in on you, providing resources and respite to help and support you.

Maybe it sounds far-fetched. Perhaps it seems impossible.

But we have to try to make this dream a reality.

You can help:

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I am beginning to understand complexities about caregiving that I hadn't realized before. I wonder if I had ever received an offer from a stranger, maybe some well-meaning church member or volunteer, to allow me a time of respite, would I have actually taken it? Would I have been too worried that no one could take care of my mother like I did, no one would understand her idiosyncrasies, no one could counter her wild behaviors like me; would that have stopped me from getting help at all? Or would I have been just desperate enough to accept it anyway? Would my worries about things going wrong keep me from even trying?

Lillie Fuller

That sounds like a beautiful dream Denise! What a great idea! Gosh! I can't imagine the comfort that would of brought several times I was at ER and the hospital with my mom!