PRLog - March 27, 2012 - SAN FRANCISCO -- With 13 percent of the U.S. population over the age of 65, many spouses, siblings, friends and adult children are suddenly thrust into providing elder care for a loved one. Homecare.com, a new, free online destination for caregivers, provides comprehensive educational resources, decision-making tools and ongoing support that will help family caregivers learn, thrive and find balance through this journey.
The instructional, easy-to-understand content was developed by Dr. Linda Rhodes, chief gerontologist at Homecare.com and the former Pennsylvania Secretary of Aging, and author of the award-winning book “Finding Your Way: A Guide for Family Caregivers” (2011 Silver National Mature Media Award).
“Very few people see their caregiver role coming, so it’s no surprise they’re often overwhelmed by the amount of time, research and emotion involved,” said Dr. Rhodes. “Our objective at Homecare.com is to prepare family members to care for their loved ones by providing them with practical tools, expert information and a community of supporters that will be helpful and compassionate throughout their caregiving.”
With Homecare.com, caregivers can:
• Review guides, resources and answers to common questions about caregiving, health insurance, specific diseases and more.
• Save and share a private collection of articles most relevant to the caregiver’s situation so that important information can be accessed easily.
• Use the Planning Assistant to create a personalized care guide based on an individual’s specific caregiving circumstances.
As a first step, caregivers new to the role can use the customizable Planning Assistant – an educational tool that provides family caregivers with the knowledge essential to helping an older loved one remain at home for as long as possible. After answering a series of questions, caregivers will receive a personalized plan with tips and solutions to help them make informed decisions with confidence.
Caregivers can also easily find information on top-of-mind subjects directly related to caring for aging adults, including Medicare and Medicaid; hospice, in-home or nursing home care; family dynamics; and financial resources. Further, caregivers can review comprehensive information about common illnesses such as heart disease, dementia, Alzheimer’s, diabetes and more.
Favorite articles can be saved to a caregiver’s private collection at Homecare.com, so that they are always readily accessible. Beyond just maintaining important pages of information, caregivers can make personal notes on all relevant content and easily share that information with friends, family members and other caregivers in similar situations. By involving others in their caregiving process, caregivers can reduce their own stress level, while also feeling less alone.
To enrich the user experience, Homecare.com commissioned artist Rebekka Seale to produce a hand-painted illustration for each article. The charming gouache and watercolor artwork provides warmth and color while also helping viewers navigate the site. Each illustration's thematic imagery aligns with content categories such as Caregiving Solutions, Health Topics, and Financial & Legal Issues, in addition to adding visual elements of beauty and grace.
Homecare.com will continue to grow, adding new features and content to help site users address the challenges involved in caregiving. By providing a supportive environment for sharing firsthand knowledge and personal stories, Homecare.com enables caregivers to learn from the experience of others in the elder care community.
Homecare.com provides expert information, answers and resources – as well as practical action steps – to help caregivers make sound decisions and successfully navigate the complex world of elder care. The free content is presented in a straightforward, easy-to-understand way, and was developed by gerontologist Dr. Linda Rhodes, Pennsylvania's former Secretary of Aging. In addition to the resources on www.homecare.com, you can find our caregiver community on Facebook: www.facebook.com/