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Complimentary “Caregiver’s Handbook” eBook

San Marcos, Calif. — April 16, 2014, Wednesday, April 16th is National Healthcare Decisions Day and the California State University Shiley Institute for Palliative Care (Institute) in conjunction with the County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency, Aging & Independence Services, and Caregiver Coalition of San Diego are making the Caregiver’s Handbook available at no charge on the Institute’s website.

This 35-page booklet is designed to give the caregiver or one relying on others for care, guidance in organizing and simplifying your unique situation. Topics include caregiving, legal and financial concerns such as advance care planning, health issues, and palliative care.

Here are some of the topics covered in the free Caregiver’s Handbook:

Section 1: About Caregiving – This section includes discussion of: Who are the caregivers, the receivers, and who else is in the same boat? It also includes a checklist of personal-information documents and a place to create a list of who needs to know where they are being kept.

Section 2: Caregiving Services to Help You – Topics include: Top 5 Caregiving Tips, An overview of Respite, Support Groups, Case Management, In-Home Care, Placement, Assessment and Consultation, and Protection Through Technology. This section also includes checklists that cover personal safety and healthcare decisions.

Section 3: Legal/Financial Concerns and Resources – This section includes information about legal Issues and documents. It also includes general checklists, definitions (laws very from state to state) and a list of public benefits that consumers may be eligible for including websites and phone numbers for specific answers to questions.

Section 4: Health Care Issues – This section includes tips for talking to doctors, guidance for medication management, a fall-prevention checklist and other personal information charts.

Section 5: Self-Care – This section includes reminders for how caregivers can better take care of themselves while caring for others.

Section 6: End of Life – This section gives a clear definition of hospice along with guidance as to when hospice should be called and who pays for it.

Throughout the Caregiver’s Handbook eBook there is also information on the CSU Shiley Institute for Palliative Care and what palliative care does to help reduce suffering. “Palliative care is often confused with hospice,” said Carline Boaz, Associate Director at the Institute. “What palliative care does is simply improve the quality of life for patients and families facing serious or chronic illness — whatever the diagnosis or prognosis. It prevents and relieves suffering by addressing pain as well as the physical, emotional, psycho-social and spiritual problems associated with serious and chronic conditions.”

Helen McNeal, Executive Director of CSU Shiley Institute for Palliative Care stated, “As families engage in conversations about healthcare decision making, they will find it’s much easier to have a document like the Caregiver’s Handbook eBook to guide them through all of the important topics without letting discomfort sidetrack these crucial conversations.”

The eBook – Caregiver’s Handbook is available on the Institute’s website.

About the CSU Shiley Institute for Palliative Care

The CSU Shiley Institute for Palliative Care is America’s first statewide educational and workforce development initiative dedicated to palliative care. The Institute offers professional development and continuing education courses designed to enhance the skills of current and future health care professionals. It also delivers customized corporate educational and community awareness programs designed to increase awareness of palliative care across California and around the nation.

Contact: Steve Dahl, CSU Shiley Institute for Palliative Care, Contact Us, 760-750-7292

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