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Caring for our seniors has changed almost beyond recognition
over the past generation. A few decades ago, there were really
only two choices for protecting our parents and other older adults
in their declining years: we cared for them ourselves at home, or
they went to a nursing home. The choice was clear, but definitely
agonizing as well. If parents stayed at home, the children caring
for them were often stretched beyond their physical, financial,
and emotional capabilities. If the nursing home was chosen, the
senior often felt abandoned, and correspondingly, their children
felt gnawing guilt about their parents’ anguish.

Since then, options for senior care have proliferated wonderfully.
That, of course, is great and welcome news. But having
such a variety of choices presents challenges of its own. How do
older adults and their children and others who love them decide
among the available options? How do they identify the best alternative
for their circumstances while keeping in mind the important
considerations of health, emotions, geography, finances, and
other variables?

The task can seem overwhelming. But it doesn’t need to be.
To help you, we decided to write this book as a guide to what
families need to know in order to make the best senior care decisions.
And, although this book is directed at you and your family,
including the senior members, we have also designed it to
be useful to professional caregivers, medical professionals, senior
care specialists, bank trust officers, elder care attorneys, physicians,
and others who need to know more about the expanding
universe of senior care.