New Adjustment -Dad can hardly take the walk from his room to the pick-up area to meet the driver that takes him to Adult Day Care three times a week. Need Ideas / Advice


Details posted in separate entry to allow spaces between paragraphs

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Find Care & Housing


First, hugs to you. You don't deserve this kind of frustration.

I remember when the van picked Coy up for his Day Program. The scheduled time was just a target, and it could be several minutes on either side (usually later) than that time. Sometimes when the van came I'd have to go out and tell the driver that Coy was in the bathroom and would be out very soon. It was very easy for me to see why the timing had to be flexible! Delays could happen at each stop.

It would be good if you could find a volunteer -- vet, church, any local organization -- to see that Dad gets on the van each day. The ALF no doubt has a group of regular volunteers that help with bingo and breakfast and other activities. Perhaps there could be one (or three) volunteers whose contribution was escorting Dad to the van.

It got to be very difficult to get Coy ready in the morning. I finally switched his schedule, to start an hour later. In the middle of breakfast is just about the worst time to ask for extra help from the staff! Might a change in schedule be possible/helpful in your Dad's situation?

As Coy got weaker and more confused the Day Program regretfully notified me that they could no longer provide the individual care he was starting to need. I see that now they have the regular program and programs for two different level of dementia. Maybe they could do it now, but they couldn't then.

How much longer is it reasonable to expect that Dad can continue to go to work? Have you had a care conference with them lately? I'm sure they don't have a crystal ball, but they might have some insights into how much longer he can continue to attend, even if you get the transportation worked out.
Helpful Answer (1)

I thought about that as well Shane1124. I don't think the responsibility should fall on the driver, but the UNassisted Living place is really making things harder. My thoughts were that it would be easiest for them to make sure Dad is where he should be at the appropriate time. Not so much. They want the driver to call when she is ten minutes away, but this presents problems in itself.

First, is it really her responsibility to do that (probably not), and I don't think she would be willing to. Secondly, it's VERY hard to get someone on the phone at the Assisted Living place. You have to go through the main switchboard (if that phone is answered), and then be transferred to the AL and hope someone answers.

I hate the process and don't think it's fair to put the burden on the driver. I just don't know what to do...
Helpful Answer (2)

Those drivers have a schedule to keep; think of all the other passengers waiting in the van or in their home to go to senior care as well.

Asking the driver to go up to his room is not reasonable. If you dig further, you may find that in the contract it is not the drivers responsibility to leave her van unattended for the time required to your dad to get to the pick up area. I will bet the contract states curb to curb pickup. 

If I were the driver I would be uptight too as she/he is responsible for all the seniors on her bus, not just your dad.

I’d pursue asking the AL staff to make sure he is ready to go at the curb when that bus gets there. It’s more their responsibility than the driver’s. If this happens frequently you might get a call from the transport company stating they can’t pick him up anymore if he isn’t ready and downstairs.
Helpful Answer (4)

Could you reach out to some veterans groups to see if there might be some vets willing to drive your dad? I know vets often want to help other vets (I *think* your dad is a vet). You might even find one who would drive dad all three days. I'd start with the local vet groups to see. If they can't do it, maybe they know someone who might be able to. You could also reach out to some local faith communities to see if someone might be willing to drive dad.
Helpful Answer (2)

I thought about tempting her with a little extra cash to see if she would be willing to do a more "door to door" type thing, but that's just one more thing I would have to pay for... money is BEYOND tight these days. Besides, my concern is that the other passengers on the van may expect this treatment and get upset that they're not getting it.

I also have experienced her harsh tone and had to remind her that Dad is sick. I totally believe the AL staff when they said she storms up to his room if he's not there. The drivers that the Adult Daycare uses don't make much money and are AWFUL.

I've asked the AL staff to make sure Dad stays in the pick up area, but his pickup time is in the middle of breakfast so they are typically busy with other residents. Sometimes I have no idea why I pay these folks. I never think I'm getting my $5K worth, but I don't have the patience to take Dad myself and our experiences with bringing in help was HORRIBLE.

Every ounce in my codependent body wants to just jump in and add another burden to my plate by asking her to text me so I can call Dad to make sure he's making his way to the pickup area. I see that as a disaster waiting to happen.
Helpful Answer (0)

I would think that this is a service that should be provided by the Assisted Living place. They should see to it that he gets a reminder to be ready on those days that he goes to the Adult Care Center, and the AL Aide should deliver him to the front door, in a coat, ready for pick up, however if a wheelchair is necessary for him to accomplish this, then yes, you should provide him one, out not his monies, and you can pick one up fairly inexpensive on Craig's list, or a Facebook sale page pretty cheap. He is probably going to need one for these kind of outings soon anyways.

You could also set up your Cell Phone to give him a quick call to be waiting down in the pick up area, and also call the front desk to remind them of this, giving them both lots of time in advance, in case they are pokey, or other things (emergencies) come up that might delay them from doing so in a timely fashion.

Lastly, have a chat with the driver, explaining your circumstance, hopefully he/she should understand that these sorts of things do come up with Seniors, especially ones who are cognitively impaired, and she should be receptive to assisting him to the bus, especially if she knows how very important it is to him (and you) that he attend, and your kind delivery of this request will go a long way, in how it is received, remember you catch more bees with honey, Lol!

Lastly, what does your contract read, in the manner of the drivers responsibility to assuring he gets onto the bus to go to the Senior Daycare? Does it state that it is their responsibility to pick him up from his apartment, and assist him to the bus? Or is it his (his or the AL staff's) responsibility to see that he is ready and waiting at the designated pick up site? If it is down to pure kindness on her part, little gifts like a Starbucks gift card, or McDonald's or chocolates might go a long way to achieving your goal that she is more patient, and will hopefully assist him. That would be my suggestion, to always show your appreciation in matters such as these.

People in the service industry do like to feel as if their efforts are appreciated, just as we All do, and all those little acts of kindness go a long way of achieving your goal. And not just once, it would be nice if once a month or so, he greets her with a small token of his appreciation, I know you shouldn't Have To (yes, they are being paid), but its a simple thing, showing your thanks to people looking after and Out For your Dad!
Helpful Answer (2)

Your best bet is to talk to the aide and see if a little side payment would facilitate the transfer.
Helpful Answer (1)

Tiny, does the aide come at a specific time every day? If so, perhaps you could ask the staff if an aide can help prepare your father and take him to the pick-up point, on a regular basis? It sounds like someone is going to have to help to ensure that he can go, but there's also the question of his apparent increasing weakness and how long he could in fact continue to leave the facility.
Helpful Answer (2)

So, my Dad (who is in AL) is getting worse as expected, so much so that he can hardly take the walk from his room to the pick-up area to meet the driver that takes him to Adult Day Care three times a week. The VA pays for this person, but let's just say you get what you pay for.

The AL staff states that she is constantly late and very rude if she has to leave the vehicle to go upstairs and knock on his door. Here's the dilemma... Dad doesn't see well, so he sometimes can't really see the vehicle when she pulls up. He also has dementia, so his sense of timing is "off". Sometimes he comes really early, gets frustrated from waiting and goes back to his room.

I currently work like a maniac to try to ensure Dad's comfort, so I really don't want to have to PAY for a door-to-door service, but think that may be my only option since Dad really needs a wheelchair to get him downstairs to the pick up area and into the vehicle as well as take the burden trying to maintain a time schedule off Dad.

I asked the AL if they could help, but they want the driver to call when she's outside. I am going to ask her to try this, but even I have trouble getting through to someone at the front desk at the AL. Sometimes the phone just rings and rings.

Dad really enjoys the Adult Day Center, and I think taking that outing away will completely crush him (and add to my ongoing guilt about this whole caregiving thing). Any suggestions on how I can help manage this? I HATE being caught in the middle so much...
Helpful Answer (1)

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.