NPR's Morning Edition Tackles Sandwich Generation Caregiving

Molly Schlanker, 5/1/2012

Caregiving for aging parents, while raising children, creates unique challenges for families.  Soon there will be a higher percentage of senior citizens than any other age group in America.  Beginning today, April 17, 2012, National Public Radio's Morning Edition program will begin broadcasting "Family Matters".  This series explores the new reality for many Americans as their parents are living longer.  In addition, families began having their first child often in their 30's, instead of their 20's, which brings the generations for caregiving even closer together.

Costs of senior care and child care are one issue, in addition to the time constraints and emotional strains that come with dealing with aging and parenting.  The NPR program, hosted by David Greene, will air over the course of eight weeks.  "Family Matters" will follow the lives of three different families, providing a view from their perspectives as they serve as caregivers to both parents and children.  

Senior caregiving requires understanding the complex care needs of a senior as new age-related diseases may arise.  Medicare, the health insurance program for seniors in the U.S.A., does not pay for long-term care.  Only very low-income seniors will qualify for Medicaid care which will provide long-term care in a nursing home.

Nursing home care can cost as much as $350 per day or more.  Rural areas, with a lower cost of living, will cost less, from closer to $150 per day.  Caregiverlist's Nursing Home directory provides the daily costs of nursing home care and nursing home ratings nationwide.  The Abbington of Glenview, located in the Chicago suburb of Glenview, Illinois, costs $290 per day and the Blu-Fountain Manor in Godfrey, Illinois, costs $134 per day.

Another issues confronting Americans is understanding that as seniors live longer, new and different care solutions are needed.  Technology by companies such as Independa,, will enable monitoring of care needs for seniors in the home remotely.  Independa offers a wireless touch pad along with a suite of wireless health devices and home sensors.  Many new solutions will be offered as America's Baby Boomer population lives longer and continues to be a generation which innovates.


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