The Alternate Contact Form and Eldercare Concerns
What Is The Alternate Contact Form?
In 2017, the Securities Exchange Committee approved modifications to the Financial Services Industry Regulatory Authority Rule 4512, which requires financial firms to make a reasonable effort to request a "trusted contact" from their clients. This form is similar to HIPPA law, allowing medical professionals to share information about patients' health. The trusted or alternate contact form is simply a permission slip for advisors to contact a family member or friend when clients do not seem to act like themselves.
When Would This Form Be Used?
"Martha," age 75, met with her financial advisor, "Josephine," for her annual meeting this week. During the meeting, Josephine noticed something was not quite right. Three times in 45-minutes, Martha asked, "what's the interest rate on money market funds these days?" even though Josephine answered it each time. Then when they talked about risk tolerance, Martha had forgotten that they mutually decided to reduce the equity portion of the portfolio at the last appointment. Josephine was concerned that there might be an underlying medical cause. The alternate contact form allowed her to reach out to Martha's designated friend or family member to share her concerns.
Health Concerns Of Older Americans
Health concerns are a significant issue for millions of older adults and can severely impact their quality of life. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) reports that eighty percent of Medicare beneficiaries suffer at least one chronic condition. Alzheimer's disease and dementia affect 2.9% of Medicare beneficiaries, and 18.6% of older Americans dually enrolled in Medicare and Medicaid. Nearly 70% of Medicare beneficiaries are affected by two or more conditions such as high blood pressure (56.9%), cholesterol (48.9%), arthritis (33.1%), heart disease (26.6%), diabetes (24.9%), kidney disease (22.8%) and 14 other less common ailments. These debilitating chronic conditions coupled with the risk of falling (one out of four adults aged 65 and older fall every year) often limit older adults' ability to remain independent and result in the need for assistance from caregivers or institutional care.
Where To Get Help?
The Older Americans Act provides funding for older individuals and families to access services and opportunities within the local community. In Indiana, 16 Area Agencies on Aging provide supportive services and senior center programs comprising the INconnect Alliance.
Services available under the Older Americans Act include:
- Adult day services
- Attendant care
- Caregiver support services
- Case management
- Congregate meals
- Environmental modifications
- Home-delivered meals
- Information and assistance
- Legal assistance
- Personal emergency response systems
- Specialized medical equipment
- Vehicle modifications
The resources, solutions, and connections provided by the Area Agencies on Aging are designed to empower older community members to live more fulfilled lives. In addition, the Family Caregiver Program supports individuals caring for loved ones age 60 and older. Services provided include individual counseling, training, support groups; respite to allow the caregivers temporary, short-term breaks from their caregiving responsibilities; and supplemental services such as home modifications, assistive technologies, emergency response systems, and incontinence supplies.
If you know someone in need of eldercare in Indiana or a caregiver in need of support services, CLICK HERE to find the nearest Area Agency on Aging.
While the difficulties accompanying aging can be emotionally and financially challenging, knowing who to turn to when dealing with those issues can alleviate stress and provide peace of mind. For nearly two decades, the Hurlow Wealth Management Group has helped clients plan financially for their eldercare needs in a thoughtful and personalized way. If you are retired and do not feel emotionally or financially prepared, schedule a FREE consultation today to start the conversation.
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