My 63 y/o father was diagnosed with vascular dementia. What next?

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My sister and I are the only family that he has and we are part of the "sandwich generation." I live 160 miles away and am handling his finances and calling about things and my sister is getting burned out taking care of him as much as she can. He lives alone and neither of us are able to take him in. He has declined rapidly, forgetting his grand daughter's name, forgetting about my husband of 20 years and took a 16 hour road trip so we took away his keys. He is lonely, doesn't have an acute diagnosis but we will be getting that from Rush memory clinic at the end of this month. But right now we are stuck. We can't let him live alone, but he makes too much money ($1230 a month) to qualify for assistance.

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1230$ a month disqualified him for what?

Have you requested a consult with an eldercare attorney?

Have you had a "needs assessment" from his local Area Agency on Aging?

They will help you identify resources for his care.
Melissa, can you clarify what assistance you've looked into for your dad?
'He has declined rapidly,'

first thing you have to do is make sure everyone involved his safe; him, those he may possibly harm, including in his car. once you're sure that's under control, then the next fire drill is making sure all the appropriate legal paperwork is in place, generally the will, power of attorney financial, power of attorney medical, deeds to any property. after you've got that under control per his wishes (before he becomes too far gone) then you make sure all the financial accounts are properly titled so that someone can manage his finances or if necessary take over entirely. at that point you breathe a sigh of relief and begin the long hard battle down the road of dementia. he obviously can't remain alone, probably should not be alone now. either you or your sister steps up or chances are a social worker will have to get involved and do it for you. don't worry about the money right now, it sounds like there isn't any anyway, you just want to make sure he is safe and cared for.  knowing as much as you do about this case i would make darn sure he's not left alone, that's the main thing.  if no one is going to stay with him then someone needs to drive him to the ER and talk to a social worker. believe it or not this is considered to be an emergency, something can and will go seriously wrong under his roof alone.  i would treat this the same as you would any other organ failure, his brain is about to go and you are under time pressure to step up, no matter what the demands of your personal life and your sister's.  otherwise it's a 911 call or worse.
With our aging father neither of us is in a position to move him in with us. We don’t have room. It also isn’t my 14 yr olds responsibility to watch her grandpa because we all HAVE to work. He has to go to assisted living.
We talked to a social worker to try and get him into a rehab facility (for a short time) after leaving the hospital (where they just diagnosed him with vascular disease, not dementia) and his insurance wouldn't cover it. We were also looking for financial aid for assisted living and he made too much, but all of this was pre-diagnosis. I was told that since he does seem as far gone as he is that we wouldn't be able to have power of attorney medical and financial, is this incorrect? I'll call the social worker we talked to at the hospital and since the diagnosis has changed if there is something more we can do. I'm hoping Rush memory clinic can give us more information. I really needed some validation from people that have gone through this, instead of having to wait and wait.
Melissa, your posts are a little confusing. You said he has vascular disease but not dementia. It sure sounds like some type of dementia if he can’t take care of himself, drive, finances etc.

As for validation, I’m not sure what you’re looking for but I and many others have gone through this with parents.

Your dad is young. My dads dementia started at about age 82 and got progressively worse. He’s been in a memory care facility since my mom died this past April.

I think like most of us, you’re in for a rough time here. If he’s incompetent you can’t get POA. Legal guardianship is possible but it’s a lengthy process and will cost money. I just completed it for my dad.

If you’re Dad is cooperative you may be able to get him in assisted living without using legal means.  You might have to fib to him a bit but that’s par for the course .

Financially, without a detailed picture of his assets, income, insurance etc no one can advise you on this. I’m not suggesting you post that info here but start digging around. Is he on Medicare or Medicaid?

Talk to Assisted Living places in your area. They will do an assessment of his needs and help you understand costs, financing and possibly help with a Medicaid application.

Good luck to you.

Hi Melissa,
OK. i'm starting to get the big picture here. hospital slapped a diagnosis on him of vascular disease. believe it or not this means little or nothing. i've seen them slap about every false mental diagnosis on my mother, and now my best friend who has been in a hospital for about 10 days. per the attorneys i have spoken with it takes a letter from a neurologist certifying mental incapacity. in order to get that it is my understanding dementia must be end stage. it is highly unlikely you are there yet if the so called diagnosis is relatively recent. i'll think about it more tonight and try to write more, am in a time pinch right now waiting for call from best friend, they put him on psychiatric drugs today, are going in for the financial kill, his ex-wife and brother.  multiple zeros upon zeros at the end of his net worth, it's really getting serious. i'll try to follow up later, but for the time being, use this time to get your legal house in order or i guarantee you'll be on here for the next five or ten years yelling and screaming.

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