In this episode of the Calvert County Lifestyle podcast i’m joined by Circle of Care owner, Lee Ann Stedman. Here’s some of the things we talked about:
- How and why Lee Ann Stedman got into the business of home care
- Difference between home care, home health care, hospice
- The 5 warning signs your loved one may need help
- How to deal with family or loved ones that are resistant to wanting help
- How the needs of people with Alzheimer’s/Dementia patients may be a bit different than regular care needs
- Defining Respite Care and how taking a break can make you the family caregiver more effective
If you would like to find out more information about Lee Ann Stedman or Circle of Care visit http://www.mdcircleofcare.com.
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Full Audio Transcript:
Hi, welcome to Calvert country lifestyle podcast, episode 7. Today I’m joined by Lee Ann Steadman, a Maryland national capital homecare association board of director and the owner of Circle of Care in Prince Frederick. She’s going to tell us the difference between home care, home health care, and hospice, she’ll tell you why and how she got into the business, some warning signs that a loved one needs help, and how to go about helping them, she’ll give you some tips and ways to work with your loved ones if they’re giving you resistance or telling you they don’t need help, some good warning signs, and she’ll talk about alchemies and dementia case and how they’re different form standard home care, and respite care and what that is. With that, we look forward to having Lee Ann on later in the show.
Welcome to the Calvert county lifestyle podcast by yourcalvert.com the original podcast for Calvert county and dedicated to helping you get the most from the place you play or call home. Listen for the latest events, reviews, updates, interviews, and more. Now here’s your host Clif bride gum.
Welcome to anther show. Let’s get into it. to start things off this is episode number 7, the show notes for this show can be found at yourcalvert.com/7. Right now on the website we have a giveaway going on, the giveaway is from captain cooks bayside foods 52 LLC. They operate the mobile kitchen that’s located, that splits time between Prince Frederick on 231 next to the 7-11 area, as well as on 260 right across the street from dashing, if you’ve never been by or visited them before, they have pulled pork, they’ve got pulled chicken, sloppy Joes, baby back ribs, and all kinds of amazing sides. Don’t forget the meatballs, they’re yummy too. The giveaway, if you go to yourcalvert.com/giveaway, we’re giving away 10 platters, so any platter of your choice they offer, you can choose the pulled pork, the pulled chicken, any platter they offer, it comes it 2 sides as well. We’re giving away 10 of those. To enter just go to yourcalvert.com/giveaway page. There’s some text for you to reread if you want to find more about it, in the box at the every bottom of that, you might have to scroll, a place for you to enter your name and email, and click enter contest button, that will enter you into the contest. Once you click, you’ll be taken to a second page, if you want o share the page, you can use facebook or twitter or LinkedIn, it’ll let you share the page to your social channels, or receive extra entries for that. That’s the contest, this is open to anyone in Calvert county, an email was already sent out to our subscribers to let them know, but also feel free to invite your friends and family and share it with anyone else. Last week on the blog we put out an article for the united way made grass recap. The event took place on march 1st, we just finished writing up the article here and getting photos from the event ready. Tiffany is our photographer, and she captured more than 300 photos room the event. If you visit the website and click on that post there, you’ll be able to see those photos, we have them arranged in a slideshow, some of the highlights from the event include the food, there was even a Mongolian grill area set up, dessert included flaming donuts, allowed you to top it with sprinkles, ice cream, chocolate syrup, and all kinds of things. There was some specially crafted drinks. An entire red room which had its own kind of singing and performers in the back. There were face painters, stilt walkers, belly dancers, all kinds of fun entertainment for the night. The moonshine society band was amazing as well. There was also a fphotobooth, a silent auction, and even a jewelry raffle. It was a fantastic event, the event raised more than 100,000 for the united way. This is their biggest fundraising event of the year. I look forward to going back next year. If you were there, or you just want to browse the photos, go ahead and go to our website yourcalvert.com and make sure you find the post and scroll down towards the bottom of the page.
Next up we have a voicemail left on the voicemail message system, you can get to that from yourcalvert.com/vim if you’d like to leave your own comment, question, voicemail or shootout.
What’s up Clif, this is brain from crow entertainment. Great job, your show is awesome. Keep it up, love being a part of it.
We’d like to thank brain, co, and crow entertainment, look forward to your upcoming podcast. Alright let’s give a warm welcome to Lee Ann Steadman owner of Circle of Care. Lee Annn say hi.
Hi Clif, thanks for having me.
Tell use bout your background and how you got into this.
In 2001, I started Circle of Care after spending the previous 6 years taking care of my own mother who had become ill with kidney failure and dementia. We were living in Chesapeake beach and we got to a point where we needed assistance at home. There really wasn’t a business in the area that was fulfilling those needs and after looking around, I was able to find some help but I recognized there was a big gap in the home care arena here in southern Maryland.
Now that you’ve filled that gap in the market, the first thing I thought of when I thought of your company and what you were telling me, I was thinking of hospice. What is the difference between home care, home health care, and hospice.
That’s a good question a lot of people aren’t aware that home care is a resource, but not considered medical care. Home health care is a company who sends a nurse out to a home, a physical therapist, a speech therapist, some infusion or durable medical equipment services that would come into the home, because those are considered home health services, those are covered by Medicare or health insurance. Hospice on the other hand is for a family who has an individual that is looking at the end stages of life or late stages of life. It’s battling some sort of illness that they’re not going to recover from, and hospice also provides services to someone in the home with Medicare payment. However, the rest of the time you’re dealing with these individuals, there isn’t anyone in the home. Hospice and home health care, are task related services. If you go to work in the morning and leave your aging parent at home, and she has a visiting nurse coming or a therapist coming over, she still going to be alone for the majority of the day, and what home care is, is non medical care where we provide services to asset people with daily living and personal care services as well as companionship, helping with meals, doing housekeeping, helping run errands and that sort of thing.
Now I really understand it. are you guys there the whole day, or a portion of the day or whatever the person wants as opposed to task oriented services.
We will serve a family for as many hours in a day as they’d like up to 24 hours a day, and we’ll also come as few times, once a week, or twice a week for half a day.
So whatever the patient wants.
A couple of hours up to 24 hours a day to 24/7.
And you mentioned you were serving aging customers, but you also serve other individuals as well that have ease kind of condition or need help.
Absolutely, people recovering from surgery or accidents, or going through a period of illness in their lives that prevents them from handling aspects of their daily living, we can help with that. We don’t do childcare, that’s it.
Okay, got it. so Lee Ann, is licensing required for home health care providers?
Absolutely. In the state of Maryland, a company or individual that provides coma pinion services, I define this as sort of touchy no touchy, that phrase from the Disney movie. If you’re involved in a service where you’re going into the home providing companion or housekeeping, running errands, those are considered companion services. The moment you get involved in touching this individual having anything to do with their personal care, even if you’re just shadowing a person who is a fall risk. It’s very important that people who are looking for home care understand an agency without a license is not able to do any types of physical care for an individual. Not legally.
So if you’re trying to hire someone make sure they’re licensed for what you’re trying to have them do.
Absolutely, the state oversight is important. If there’s ever a situation, never happened for us, but it’s happened in other situations, if there’s ever a situation where there’s a question as to whether the services you’re receiving are appropriate, or if the behavior is appropriate, you’ve got the state to call, you can get in touch with eh office of healthcare quality in Baltimore and talk with them about that, and in fact, for every case that we serve, we have to provide each individual with the information so that they could liaison with the office of healthcare quality at any time if they have a complain.
If someone wants to hire a caregiver, what screenings are performed, background checks? How do they go about finding this particular caregiver?
That’s a good question. For Circle of Care, in addition to the things we must do, required by the state, which is that we do have to screen our caregivers, we do have to perform a background check and check references, and keep a file with that information. We also ask the family several questions about the personality of the individual, and what type of person would be good with them. It’s not always a good fit, not everybody can be everybody’s best friend. So we really try to make a great match with those individuals and at any time a family can say you know I’d rather interview somebody else, or have a different caregiver in here, that’s not an issue at all.
The patient or patient’s family can actually request a different caregiver or get to know a certain potential or Circle of Care’s people.
Absolutely. We encourage people to if they want to talk to 2 or 3 caregivers before they make a decision, that’s fine.
That’s great, finding the right person is crucial. Finding the match.
It’s an intrusion into people’s homes, it’s a different way of life, having someone around. Like having a houseguest, you want to make sure it’s someone you want in your home.
Houseguest that never leaves.
Additionally Clif I wanted to say that the state requires that caregivers in the home have certain credentials such as CPR, and first aid training, if a caregiver is required to do certain tasks with an individual, they might be, might require a certified nurse assistant be in there instead of an aide that hasn’t had the training they need. We try to match the level of expertise of caregiver with the level of services that are required by the individual.
So I’ve heard a few people chattering about respite care, can you tell me what that is.
Sure. Respite care is when a family caregiver is taking care of the person who needs care, and they needed a break. That happens less frequently than it should . we provide in addition to daily services if that’s what you want or a couple times a week, we can provide occasional services for families, twice year we can provide a live in caregiver or someone for server hours a day a week while the family goes on vacation, or we can go in there for a weekend, so the individual who’s caring for the elderly person can take a weekend away and go to the beach or something, or attend a family wedding. We do that as well. It’s important for people that care for other people to know that there’s no guilt in needing a break, and in fact, you’re much more effective in your ability to care for a loved one if you’re taking regular breaks.
You can take breaks when you want and know that someone that’s qualified is there to take over for you in your absence.
Lee Annn do you help patients that have alheizers, how might that care be different than what you normally provide.
Clif a lot of people with Alzheimer’s are not ill with some sort of diagnosis other than the fact that they have memory loss or Alzheimer’s, they’re perfectly capable of doing a lot of things, but their memory isn’t working properly, and they’re not doing things they should be doing. Not eating or bathing when they should. They’re confused, may be leaving the stove on, those sort of things. Most issues are going to be more safety issues, the unfortunate part about this, and it’s really something that’s near and dear to my heart is that it’s one of the most expensive epidemics we suffer here in the future, and at the moment, there isn’t any assistance for Alzheimer’s care or dementia care in the home because it’s not considered healthcare, it doesn’t come with a physical diagnosis that requires a visiting nurse or physical therapist to come in, what we’re faced with is families who have to go to work, have to maintain health insurance for their families, but mom or dad is just not safe at home. And we provide services to those people as well. Some of our clients even live alone and are still fairly cognizant enough that if we’re making sure they’re getting meals and getting ready for their day, they might be okay for the rest of the day, or might have another family member or friend that stays with them, but it is a difficult care situation for families because it’s a very long care situation for quite a few people. Towards the end of an individual’s life with Alzheimer’s, they might be bed ridden, no longer speaking, may even require assistance with feeding and that sort of thing. It can run a gamut of 10 to 20 years.
Thaws’ really long time for a caregiver.
I believe 75 to 80 percent of the population would like to age at home and that’s what we pride ourselves on, we’re there to help them do that.
I’m sure you hear all the time a family member might be helping a dad try to get care, and they may not want you guys there, may be resistant, can you give us more information on how you help or work with that.
It’s funny because most people when they’re younger they’ll say when it’s time for me to get help at home, I’ll do that, it’s not a problem. But when that time comes, they don’t really think that time has come yet. The family members are saying dad’s leaving the stove on or not taking his medicine or not eating or wearing the same outfit every day for the last 6 weeks and that sort of thing. Kit is a difficult and delicate situation for families especially when they have e resistant parent that doesn’t want anyone in the home. An area that I have when I talk to family members that I think is helpful and they’ve said they really benefit from this is I’ve been there, and I’m probably I don’t think I’m over exaggerating when I say the parent I cared for had probably one of the more difficult behaviors out there, my mother was extremely headstrong and didn’t want a caregiver in the home, she would throw them out, wouldn’t talk or respond to them, very serious bayou the fact that she didn’t need assistance, and I walked into the house the second day the caregiver was there, and they were in the bathroom giggling. I realized that my mother was afraid to have a new person in the home and didn’t know what it would be like. But once that person came in and started paying attention to her and treating her really well, and being very concerned about her, my mom started to really enjoy that, because unfortunately during the course of the day, she was getting ignored a lot, I had a small child I was taking care of, and working and going to school and caring for her, and she actually sort of lightened up a bit when she had someone there paying total attention to just her. So I encourage families as opposed to saying do you want care, or do you want help in the home, to try to ask questions that aren’t yes or no questions, give them a choice, and say it’s not safe for you to be here by yourself and it’s important to me that we make sure you are. You could go to the adult daycare center during the day or we can bring somebody in to help you during the day so that you don’t have to leave the house and go to the adult daycare. I hate to say it, don’t mean to be condescending, sometimes we’re asking people to as a child, asking people to just our parents to just jump into these great ideas and say oh, what a great idea, I can’t wait to have a caregiver, can’t wait to pay for a caregiver. So we really do need to talk to them in a way that doesn’t require them to be our parent. Because as our parents they’re wanting to call the shots. Trying to let them help make that decision and give some of them their own input.
Exactly. And I always suggest that maybe if even if dad or mom doesn’t need anybody right now, they could probably use a little assistance once a week, having somebody come in and help prepare meals, help with light housekeeping, that sort of thing, and then they’ll be used to somebody coming around, so when they really do need more assistance, they’re already introduced themselves to the idea.
That’s a really good idea. Doing a little bit when you don’t need it, but when you do need it, it’s not a big deal, they can. Dad you need a personal assistant? Wouldn’t we all love that. Someone to help you sort through your mail, that sort of thing. I want one of those too. Are there any warning signs that someone might need your services within their home.
Absolutely, the mayo clinic actually has a top 5 warning signs that an elderly person may need some assistance, the things that their family members might want to look for when they’re visiting is weight loss, is the person losing weight, does it look like they’re not able to make meals, are they eating things with no protein in them, check their refrigerator, and see if it looks like they’re eating their food, or if things are expiring. It’s sometimes difficult for them to keep up with theta, and they do lose track of time. Another one is are they taking care of themselves. Are they bathing, are they cLee Anning the house. Are they, if the person has been a neat person, are they looking disheveled, does it look like perhaps they’re not doing things around the house, are light bulbs burned out without being replaced, are things piling up. Another one is safety because a lot of times there are floor plans and the way they have furniture arranged and that sort of thing, at one point in time were not an issue, but throw rugs, those types of things, sharp cornered objects that are sticking out, walkways not wide enough for someone not steady on their feet. Some things to look for. Look at their mood, do they seem depressed, are they sleeping a lot, have they lost their zest for life, some of those things might be depression, some might be just, they’re not able to get around like they used to. So they’re kind of giving up. And then another thing to look for is when they’re walking, are they steady on their feet, are they holding on to things, when you, these are things you see when people decline, you might want to get them to the doctor, or have a serious talk about whether they might need help.
Thanks for those 5 warning signs. Are there any other warning signs you want to mention?
We get a lot of calls from family members that complain about hoarding, and hoarding is a real issue for seniors, probably the biggest reason it’s an issue is because it clutters their home and prevents it from being safe for them, it’s a fall risk and that sort of thing. The conditions can be unsanitary, we’ve been in very nice homes, where in fact we had one client that they had a stove that was unplugged and pushed up against the wall, and another stove pushed in where the other one was but they weren’t getting rid of anything, continued to pile things on top of each other, sinks full of newspapers and things so that they’re not taking care of their things like they should. Absolutely. And a lot of older people are afraid to get in and out of the tub, it’s a scary thing for them. So sometimes they’re just standing at the wash basin and washing up, but which may be fine for a day or two, but they do need to have regular bathing.
I am available to do presentations on elder care, Alzheimer’s, home care, long term care, fall risk, the benefits of home care, those sorts of things, I have a whole gamut of presentations that I can give, and I love to partner with other professionals in the field perhaps financial planners or physicians who are working in the elder field, that sort of thing, I’d be more than happy to do presentations with them. My goal is to educate people in the Maryland area about aging and how important it is to plan for that.
Absolutely, planning. Before we close out, why don’t you tell us your most favorite thing you like about Calvert county.
The thing I love the most is where I raised my daughter. And she was born in Jacksonville Florida, and I consider it a blessing and ask us to come stay with her and take care of her because my daughter was raised from the time she was 6 months old in Calvert county, she just graduated last year from hunting town high, and after seeing so many of my friends in other areas of the country raising their kids and having difficulty, this is such a wholesome family place to raise her, and she’s turned out fantastically.
We’re at the end of the show, can you tell people how to get in contact with you.
Absolutely, we are Circle of Care, located on steeple chase drive in Prince Frederick, that’s the row of townhouse offices behind the taco bell in Prince Frederick. Our telephone number is 410-297-1900. Our website is www.mdcircleofcare.com my personal email is Stedman@mdcircleofcare.com. We have a facebook page, and would love for you to visit us there. We provide actually, I provide slides from some of my presentation every day, we give you some new tips about caring for the aged.
Thank you, and thanks so much for coming on the show, we really enjoyed talking to you today, and getting those tips and insights into home care. Thanks so much, Clif.
Alright, we hope you enjoyed the show see you next week, thanks for listening to the yourcalvert.com cal very county lifestyle podcast. You can subscribe for free to updates at yourcalvert.com/go. That will take you to our why subscribe page that lists a bunch of reasons why you should subscribe. Once you do that you’ll get daily updates from everything we release from the blog including podcast episodes directly to your inbox free of charge. If you’d like to subscribe to the pod case episodes only, do it through iTunes, stitchery, Microsoft, or the raw feed urn. To subscribe for iTunes the link is yourcalvert.com/apple. That will redirect you to the iTunes page where you can listen to our episodes there as well as subscribe so all future episodes are downloaded directly to your device. Sticker radio, go to yourcalvert.com/stitchery. And that will redirect you to the stitchery page where you can subscribe, we’re in the Microsoft catalog, if you’d like to leave feedback for the show you can do so on the show notes page, that’s yourcalvert.com/ the episode number, just the numeral. Leave a comment on the page, scroll to the bottom, you can enter any comment of your choice, if you’d like to leave a comment via voice, go to our voicemail page, yourcalvert.com/vm that will allow you to record a voice comment. It’s not a hotline, it’ll let you recode using your computer or speaker or microphone on any of your mobile devices, that’ll let you record your message, play it back to yourself, and you can submit it to us. Thanks for sharing the podcast or any of the articles on our website with friends and family, we appreciate that you continue to share the articles and tell your family members about the podcast. Thanks so much, see you next week.