Get Prepared

You may be getting older (or have a family member heading in that direction) but with some advance planning, the golden years can be an enjoyable stage of life!

Need a little help – or more than a little?

Our caregiving links can point you in the right direction.

Eldercare Locator
Eldercare Locator links seniors, families, caregivers and professionals with state and local area agencies on aging. Established in 1991, Eldercare Locator is a public service of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Administration on Aging, in partnership with the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging and the National Association of State Units on Aging.

Support to Caregivers Program
The Caregiver Resource Room from the Administration for Community Living is where families, caregivers, and professionals can turn for support and assistance, and providing services to caregivers.

Easter Seals
Easter Seals has been helping individuals with disabilities and special needs, and their families, live better lives for more than 80 years. Easter Seals also offers support information and services for caregivers.

National Alliance for Caregiving 
National Alliance for Caregiving, a nonprofit organization, is dedicated to providing support to family caregivers and the professionals who help them and to increasing public awareness of issues facing family caregivers.

Caregiver Action Network
This site has guides and tips for family caregivers as well as information on support groups around the country. Caregiver Action Network is the nation’s leading family caregiver organization working to improve the quality of life for the more than 90 million Americans who care for loved ones with chronic conditions, disabilities, disease, or the frailties of old age.

Family Support Resources

CaringBridge
CaringBridge™ is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization offering free personalized Web sites to those wishing to stay in touch with family and friends during significant life events. CaringBridge authors quickly and easily create personalized Web sites that display journal entries and photographs. Well-wishers visit the site to read updates and leave messages in the Guestbook.

CarePages
CarePages specializes in enhancing the healthcare experience by connecting patients and families with their healthcare provider. CarePages make it possible for friends and family to “virtually visit” and support the patient even if they can’t be there in person. CarePages owned and operated by TLContact, a Chicago-based healthcare services company.

Insurance and Benefits

Healthfinder.gov
This portal from the National Health Information Center of The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), offers a health library, information about health care and links to health organizations. HHS is the principal U.S. government agency for protecting the health and safety of all Americans and for providing essential human services.

Extra Help With Medicare Prescription Drug Plan Costs
You may be eligible to receive extra help with prescription drug costs. Visit this site to find out if you qualify. You may also complete and submit this application from the Social Security Administration. The Social Security Administration is responsible for the Social Security and Supplemental Security Income programs.

U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services
This site is an information source about Medicaid, a government program that pays for medical assistance for certain individuals and families with low incomes and resources.

Medicare
This site is an information source about Medicare, the nation’s largest health insurance program, which covers nearly 40 million Americans. Scroll to the bottom half of the main page for search tools and click on your desired topic for more information.

Social Security and Retirement Benefits
A guide to applying for Social Security benefits. The Social Security Administration is responsible for the Social Security and Supplemental Security Income programs.

America’s Health Insurance Plans
AHIP is the national association whose members provide coverage and health‐related services that improve and protect the health and financial security of consumers, families, businesses, communities and the nation.

BenefitsCheckUp
BenefitsCheckUp is the nation’s most comprehensive online service to screen for federal, state and some local private and public benefits for older adults (ages 55 and over). It contains over 1,300 different programs from all fifty states (including the District of Columbia). On average there are 50 to 70 programs available to individuals per state. The National Council on the Aging is a national, nonprofit group of people and organizations dedicated to promoting the dignity, independence, well-being, and contributions of older people.

AHRQ’s Patients & Consumers section
Information about health care choices, quality of health care and comparing providers. The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality is a part of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). HHS is the principal U.S. government agency for protecting the health and safety of all Americans and for providing essential human services.

AARP Medicare Resource Center
Information on managed care, private insurance and Medicaid. The information is useful for all ages interested in learning more about health care coverage. The American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) is a nonprofit membership organization of persons 50 and older dedicated to addressing their needs and interests.

Senior Living

ACL – Planning for the Future
Under the Older Americans Act, ACL funds a number of programs that help older adults, families, and caregivers can use the resources below to think about planning for the future, from exploring health insurance and long-term care options to retirement planning and pension support, and more.

Nursing Home Compare
The primary purpose of this tool is to provide detailed information about the past performance of every Medicare and Medicaid certified nursing home in the country. This service is offered by Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which is a branch of the Department of Health and Human Services.

First.gov – Senior Gateway
A list of seniors’ resources including consumer protection, education, jobs, health, housing, taxes, retirement, laws and travel. At FirstGov.gov, the official U.S. gateway to all government information, you can search millions of web pages from federal and state governments, the District of Columbia and U.S. territories.

Leading Age.org
The mission of LeadingAge is to be the trusted voice for aging. Our 6,000+ members and partners include not-for-profit organizations representing the entire field of aging services, 38 state partners, hundreds of businesses, consumer groups, foundations and research partners. LeadingAge is also a part of the Global Ageing Network (formerly IAHSA), which spans 30 countries across the globe. LeadingAge is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt charitable organization focused on education, advocacy, and applied research.

American Senior Housing Association
Learn more about senior apartments, independent and assisted living, Alzheimer’s facilities and continuing care retirement communities (CCRC). The American Seniors Housing Association (ASHA) is an independent nonprofit organization, however, ASHA’s membership consists of both for-profit and not-for-profit operators, lenders and investors, and other prominent professionals.

Argentum
Argentum is the leading national trade association serving companies that own, operate, and support professionally managed senior living communities in the United States.

National Association of Social Workers
Social workers are often part of a senior living care team. Visit this site to learn more about social workers and their role in aging and senior living care. The National Association of Social Workers (NASW) is the largest membership organization of professional social workers in the world, with 153,000 members.

National Center for Assisted Living 
Click on ‘About Assisted Living’ to get started on learning about this option. The National Center for Assisted Living (NCAL) is the assisted living voice of the American Health Care Association (AHCA), the nation’s largest organization representing long-term care providers.

Consumer Voice
The National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care was formed as NCCNHR (National Citizens’ Coalition for Nursing Home Reform) in 1975 because of public concern about substandard care in nursing homes. The Consumer Voice is the outgrowth of work first achieved by advocates working for Ralph Nader and later for the National Gray Panthers.

National Long-Term Care Ombudsman Resource Center
An ombudsman can help investigate long-term care complaints and problems. The National Long-Term Care Ombudsman Resource Center provides support, technical assistance and training to the 53 State Long-Term Care Ombudsman Programs and their statewide networks of almost 600 regional (local) programs.

State Associations – American Health Care Association
Click on your state to learn about senior living options in your area. The American Health Care Association (AHCA) is the nation’s largest organization representing long-term care providers.