Circle of Care

John Robertson

It takes a village to age in place

Being alone is a major challenge for aging in place. Research tells us about one third of Americans aged 45 to 63 are single. Higher divorce rates and fewer children contribute to not having as many direct family caregivers, and statistics show younger generations are moving to urban centres. The result is smaller “care circles” — less people to depend on when the going gets rough.

Broaden your circle

HomeEXCEPT wants to help clients build and strengthen care circles, so we've made it easier to share caregiving responsibilities. The primary HomeEXCEPT subscriber can authorize UNLIMITED guests to help monitor their system. Guests may include family, friends, neighbours, professionals, or volunteers from the community.  

Suppose for a moment that Mom has two children living away. One decides to subscribe to HomeEXCEPT to know if Mom is getting up on time, using her walker when moving around, and regularly visiting the bathroom. She authorizes her sibling as a guest. Now they can both check the activity on the system whenever they like. When an alert is sent, they both receive it. They can call their Mom to check-in and also call each other to discuss concerns and plans of action.

Perhaps on their next trip home, they set up a good friend or neighbour as a guest and widen the care circle. For those without family, the entire care circle could be neighbours and friends. A great example of how this can work is the Village to Village Network, non-profit in the US that connects support for aging in place right in the community. 

Collaborative caregiving

Remote real-time check-ins allow care circles to better understand the needs of their loved ones. It helps recognize patterns and identify changes in behaviour. When an alert is dismissed, the system records the action so everyone in the care circle knows who took care of it and when.

It's a tool for senior safety and collaborative care. An informed and connected care circle is better equipped to know what kind of support is needed most.

It truly does take a village. As we continue to develop the HomeEXCEPT system, you’ll see more features to support your loved one’s care circle. Have some great ideas? We’d love to hear them in the comments section!