When to Step in: An Assessment Tool

This “quiz” will help determine if you should consider stepping in as a caregiver or making arrangements for a caregiver to visit regularly.

If I were to leave the country tomorrow, would my loved ones be self-sufficient?

  • I would say yes, with complete confidence.
  • I would worry, but my loved ones would be fine.
  • I would have to hire someone to help my loved ones for a few hours every week.
  • I would have to arrange for skilled nursing care.
  • They cannot be left alone, so I cannot leave the country.

My loved ones are in control of their mental facilities.

  • They show no signs of difficulty.
  • They show minimal memory loss from time to time, but nothing serious.
  • They need assistance with bill paying.
  • They sometimes forget how to get home.
  • Their ability to make decisions is so poor that they danger themselves.

My loved ones are in control of their daily physical functioning.

  • They are as active and healthy as ever.
  • They need help getting out of bed.
  • They have become increasingly dependent on wheelchairs.
  • They need additional monitoring; they have lost bladder and/or bowel control.
  • They are bedridden.

My loved ones’ medications are under control.

  • They do not take medications.
  • They only take one or two mild medications.
  • They have always been able to manage their medications, but have recently become dizzy and confused.
  • I have to help my loved ones keep track of their medications.
  • They have been hospitalized because of drug interactions, such as overdosing by forgetting to take or making a mistake with medications.

My loved ones are sociable and happy.

  • They are active and happy.
  • They are not as active since a recent illness.
  • They do not go out or visit with friends as often since their spouse has died.
  • They are increasingly reluctant to leave the house.
  • They are depressed and housebound.