Senior Concierge Advisor Kathy Kappler with Concierge Care Advisors talks about Assessments.
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*The following is the output of transcribing from an audio recording. Although the transcription is largely accurate, in some cases it is incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors.
And welcome back to the program everyone. And we are here with a very special guest, and that is a lady by the name of Kathy Kappler, and she’s with a company called Concierge Care Advisors. The word “concierge” you think of in a hotel. Well, it’s a lot like that, only for seniors. Kathy, welcome to the program thank you very much. I’m happy to be here. You know, you are a registered nurse, which is so incredible and unlike you know, we all think of calling an eight hundred number and you know, and finding a wonderful place for your parent. But really there’s a lot more to it than just calling up and saying I need to find assisted living. Isn’t there, Kathy? Absolutely yes, it’s a very thorough process and you know, one of the things that I love about Concierge Care Advisors, unlike other types of programs, is that we want to share with you today a little bit about all that goes on in really making sure that if you’re looking at a change in living situation or bringing in care to your home, you don’t want to have to make the wrong choice. I know that for a for me when I was taking care of my mom. It was an overwhelming thing and I was afraid to make a mistake because again you make a mistake and then you’re going to have to move them again and that’s traumatic. And so obviously one of the thing I love about your services. You really are a holistic service for families and so, Kathy, would you tell me first, before we go into you know, what the process is. Tell us a little bit about Concierge Care Advisors. Concierge Care Advisors is a company that opened in two thousand and ten and the founders of the company came from the medical background. I’ve known the CO founder, Mary Cardova, for many, many years and worked with her in the past when I was working in a community at that time how I got to know Mary. But it is a very personal company. I like to say I’ve been around for a long time in this industry worked with many companies. This company believes in one on one care for our seniors, so that is how this company is a little bit different. We also heavily screen anybody that works for our company. That’s important, very important, and we do a lot of training. We train, we spend a lot of trying time training the individuals that work for us, and you know that is really important. You know, ultimately, just the fact that you have, what is it? You have, like a over twenty five year background in working with seniors. I do pass. So you know, you’re talking about a staff out there in our community in greater puget sound that truly is fully tra rained and qualified to work with you and your you know, and your loved one, your family. So, Mary, you know, today I really wanted to talk about we hear the word a lot about an assessment. You know, we come in and assess your loved one. Well, it’s kind of a you know, it’s kind of a vague term and it certainly for those of us that aren’t, you know, that don’t come from the industry or like you are. I would love to have you take this time and talk about, you know, when you go do an assessment of a family, you know, of a loved one, what is that involved? Okay, it’s actually very involved and it is a process that we spend a lot of time on as a company with the advisors. We meet with our referral right, meet with our client and we sit down with them and it is a very lengthy I would say it takes about an hour to sit, at least to sit and chat with them right. So we go over all of their care needs, we go over what their concerns are. We we listen to them right because it is a very emotional time for them. Absolutely. So we want to put them at ease. We want to just sit there and listen. We get their care needs. We want to know what locations they would be interested in. We want to know emotionally what their care needs are, spiritual, physically. We look at every try to pick out every little piece of that client. That that the we’re that involved all differend you know, if that’s so important. And just the segment on before you, which you don’t know, we had Kathy Lyons on from BrightStar Care and she talked about the emotional or deal that families go through and you know and and a senior goes through in making that change, and sometimes it’s a long process, you know, and I’m sure that you run into that quite a bit, don’t you? We do, and we’re either working directly with the client itself or the family member, and usually it’s the family member at first so that we can hear all of their concerns and sometimes there’s concerns they want to talk about, not in front of their loved one. Amen, because it’s a very personal, very touchy, sensitive subject. Well, and it’s the dynamic of parent to child. It is a right, even though, and you know I say this almost every week, if you’re taking care of senior parent, you will never parent your parent. Don’t even go there. So that’s point in the matter being is for you to understand and respect that dynamic with your parent. Is Sometimes your parent is just not going to share things with you as a is, an adult child, but they will to somebody like you. That’s true, a non family member. So and many times there’s memory issues, there’s cognitive issues. So we go over all of that. That’s also part part of the correct placement, you know. And by getting all of their needs out and listening and understanding what they’re looking for, we also, from my background, try to educate them on the different options that are out there for them. That’s wonderful. And before we go into the housing options, I went out everybody to know we are talking to Kathy Kappler from Concierge Care Advisors and Kathy. Let’s talk a little bit about housing options. So let’s say you assess somebody for their needs. How do you go about choosing the right community for them? Okay, so as we’re talking to them and doing the assessment, we base that on pretty much what type of supervision they need. Right when we hear from air referral source or from the family, gosh, I really need somebody seven watching this client, then we know they need to be in an environment where they are were their eyes on seven. Many Times that’s an adult family home. If we are talking to somebody who’s very social, yes, they have care and needs. They may have meant many medical needs, sure, but they’re very social and they like activities and they like to get involved with people. So then we will look at assisted living as long as they can handle their care needs. So we base the different options on their care needs, their social ability, cognitive level, you know, activity level, there’s so many things we base it on, also on their interest. Sometimes they are very interested in only a certain type of option, sure, and many times that’s appropriate, other times it isn’t. So we have to gently respect their wishes, understand why they’re asking for that and then educate them a little bit on what that environment is exactly like. I know that with like, for example, for me, I didn’t have a service like you. You weren’t around. And yes, I got I used one of those eight hundred services and I got barraged with a bunch of phone calls from retirement living communities and I remember touring a facility feeling like a deer in the headlights. I didn’t know how to compare one facility to another and it I really wasn’t skilled as a daughter, as much as I love my mom, I didn’t know what the right fit, quote unquote, was for her and I remember just feeling like, you know, I’m on a time crunch. I have to find my mom a place to live because she’s going to have go on private pay out of the rehab center, and I this is what families go through and it’s such an overwhelming time. But we are by all means don’t have the skill level that somebody like you does that can go in and just just assess. You know, I know that had I had your service, I would have done a lot of things differently. Hmm Right. So we are there to educate people and it is a very emotional time and sometimes there isn’t much time so we always encourage families to get in touch with US sooner rather than later. Absolutely, even if you’re thinking way down the road and you’re just starting to have concerns about your loved one. Huh, we go. Our service is completely free, no matter what we do with the family. So we will go just do family counseling. We will go and just have a family meeting, that is, and just talk about the options that are out there and what they eat entail so families can be prepared to make the right decision. That’s incredible. So, Cathy, what area do you serve? Here in western Washington, we have advisors all from Bellingham to Olympia. That is awesome. And so you pretty much can cover, you know, greater puget sound for the most part exactly. That is awesome, right. And and then you, when you say you have advisors, are they like actually in those neighborhoods? So they yes, they are very well aware of they have relationships with the communities in that area, I’m assuming, and so they know, they know them very well. Right, they come from the areas that they’re working. We all will go where we are a team. So if an advisor is really busy and somebody needs help in her area, another advisor will will help that. That’s territory, but we all work out of our homes, so we all know our neighborhoods very well. Absolutely, that’s so important. It’s interesting you’re from my neighborhood, so we’ll have to will have to definitely hook up here. And work is okay because I have you know, I talked to families so often and and most certainly you know, everybody wants to do right by your parent and exactly it’s it’s overwhelming and you know, when you’re talking about a parent that has a fixed income or something like that, what an amazing service that you are to be that advocate for, you know, for their loved one. For sect. Our service is completely free. A budget is also part of the assessment. I should mentioned that. That’s a big part. We work with every family’s budget, so we’re not going to take them to a community to look at that. That is above their budget. That is really important too. That is really important. So on, how do we reach you? You can reach me for two, five, nine hundred and one, nine, two, seven, two four or are eight hundred. Number is actually eight hundred and fifty five four, four, four, seven, three, six four. And what is your website? ConciergeCareAdvisorscom. Wonderful. I love your name, by the way. It’s wonder it’s great. It tells what we do. Yes, absolutely, Yes, right. Thank you, Kathy, for all the great work you do. We are just so honored to have you on the program thank you. It’s pleasure to be here.
Suzanne Newman, host of the Answers for Elders radio show and podcast, proclaims often, “Caring for my mom was the hardest thing I ever have done, but it was also my greatest privilege.” Following a career of over 25 years in sales, media, and marketing management, Suzanne embarked on a 6-year-journey caring for her mother. Her trials and tribulations as a family caregiver inspired an impassioned life mission outside of the corporate world to revolutionize the journey that so many other American families also find themselves on. Answers for Elders provides education, help, and support to families, caregivers, and seniors across the country who are experiencing their own unique journey within the complicated world of Eldercare. Each week, Suzanne is joined by vetted professional experts in over 65 categories including health & wellness, life changes, living options, money, law, and more. Suzanne lives in Edmonds, Washington with her husband, Keith, and their two doodle dogs, Whidbey and Skagit.