When we were first called to the home of Mr. and Mrs. Johnson, it was because Mrs. Johnson had macular degeneration. The condition made it difficult for her to do her normal household chores because her perception was off causing her to sometimes fall. Seniors are legitimately concerned about falling because often times they will break something, usually a hip, which sometimes initiates a physical downward spiral. Mrs. Johnson also had to stop driving which was a major loss of independence. While in his late 80s, Mr. Johnson still worked in the company he founded. His son was running it but Mr. Johnson still played an important role and enjoyed going to the office. The solution was to bring in a weekday caregiver to assist Mrs. Johnson with her household chores and any personal endeavors.
Everything was going nicely for a few years until Mr. Johnson was diagnosed with a stage IV cancer. His decline was swift; he went from being an able-bodied man to being bedbound within weeks. The family was concerned that another caregiver would have to assist and that the home care expense would double, but that’s not typically the case. Our caregiver had the necessary training to care for both of the Johnsons so she began caring for both of them. It was incredibly comforting to the Johnson’s as she was familiar with their routine and felt like family. In this case our company applied a 15% surcharge as it didn’t seem like much more to make meals for two and do laundry for two, and still clean the commonly used rooms. The increased workload was in providing personal care for Mr. Johnson. If both of them had required personal care, we likely would have charged 20% more for care for two.
Mr. Johnson was thankful to remain at home during his illness. Hospice services were also provided and served as a great complement to our home care services. Mr. Johnson passed away peacefully in his sleep at the age of 91. Mrs. Johnson was by his side. They had been married for 67 years.