I have elderly parents that live out in the country hours away from any services. Any advice?


They refuse to move.

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Adapt their home for longer time living - add grab bars, remove trip hazards, install outdoor security lights and perhaps indoor monitors. Establish regular communication with them, alert police and the fire department of their status, get medical alerts, a lock box, plenty of blankets and cold weather gear if they're marooned by inclement weather.

Assuming you're close, bring frozen foods or buy meals they can heat up, make sure they have a manual can opener, backup veggies and soups, etc.

Plan for any kind of isolating weather event as well as emergencies. Prepare medical histories for both of them, list their meds and pharmacies, find out if the pharmacies deliver.

Identify backup transportation such as door to door transit or nonemergency ambulance service.

Make their home as security and weather proof as possible, including against the possibility of cold weather power outages.

There is a peace to country living that can't be found in cities or suburbs. If that's their choice to live out the rest of their lives there, acknowledge it and help them as much as you can, remembering that at some time the situation could change and they might still need help that can't be provided at home.
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Jmoore, if your parents are of sound mind they can do whatever they want, even if it is something we would consider a poor choice. Thus, they would need to take responsibly of whatever happens under those choices.

I bet your heart jumps a beat anytime you see their Caller ID on your phone. My parents lived on their own up into their mid-late 90's, so I had been a basket case for many years now due to their decisions of not moving, and refusing outside help.

Depending on your parent's age, those who are in their 80's and 90's dig in their heels the most about not wanting to leave their home. All of my parents siblings and their own parents did the same.

Like most of us here who parent(s) still are bolted to their house, it will take a major crises before they will admit they need help.
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Respect their decision, it is a beautiful thing to stay in one place when your time is short. Old people are like old trees; if you dig them up and try to plant them in a better spot, they wither and die.
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