How does a family member qualify as a caregiver? Example I bathe mom three times per week assist with dressing, and medication daily, transport to Doctor, shopping.. Also how would one charge for these duties? Thanks

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This seems to be a common question. I have asked it many times myself. I posted an answer months ago. I will repost.
Answered a question 4/4/2013 at 9:00 am
I care my elder mom, how can I get paid?
Okay, so here's what I have learned. I have been caring for my grandmother for 7+ years. It has been an up hill climb on roller blades.
1) do not feel guilty for requesting compensation for your labor -- you are earning it! Care giving is the hardest job I have ever done. I watch my grandmother die a little bit every day. And I do it alone. Her son and daughter have not seen her in 7 and 1 year respectively.
2) Educate yourself. Search on line about the laws in your state. There are states that provide for the families to create a contract allowing family caregivers to receive pay or a lien against real property.
3) If the care recipient is military or retired military, there is are programs available through the VA call them ---TODAY! Benefits are retroactive from the date you apply. Find out about Aid and Attendance.
4) Ask EVERY ONE for help (respite, finances, supplies, who to call) You never know who will provide you with the answer that will help.
5) Write letters to advocacy groups, legislators, senators, anyone who will listen -- and even if they don't listen now; with enough letters, they will.
6) Understand that people who think you should not receive compensation for family care giving have probably never had to provide care. Allow them their blissful ignorance -- because anyone that has provided care would never wish the understanding on anyone.
7) Take time for you. I know it feels selfish, but this should probably be number one on my list. Start with 10 minutes. Find a hobby. Whatever.
8) Keep a diary -- I have found this helps me retain my sanity. No one can understand your particular situation -- you can. And maybe reading over in retrospect you can help yourself understand. Sometimes this job can be overwhelming, a diary at least gets it out of your head.
9) Reach out to other caregivers. You may not have as much experience as others who are caregivers, but everyone can contribute something. Even if it's only an offer of compassion and's more than a lot of us get.
10) Forgive. Forgive society for not realizing how much we are saving the country in outside care. Forgive yourself when patience is short and demands are high.Forgive the government for saying that we as a nation need to embrace the family unit and not facilitating that ideal.
11) and once you forgive ... let it go and move on. Don't give up but allow your forgiveness to propel you forward to answers and advocacy.

I appreciate your allowing me my time on my soapbox. In answer to getting paid. It is not easy, but it can be done. There was actually a bill proposed that would allow family care givers Social Security credit toward retirement. It was not passed. Look into the family care giving contract. As for federal/state is not hopeful.
Since this was posted I also learned that you would be amazed what some agencies provide. The VA will help modify the homes of veterans and they provide some supplies. In home nursing is available in some situations as are doctors that visit the home. Medicare covers these expenses. It wont help with your bills, but it takes something off your plate.
Good luck!
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One of my father's home nurses told me, during a visit, that I could have someone from my local Catholic Charities office (that deals with Elder Care and Welfare for the Illinois Dept of Aging) come out to evaluate my father, and that I could potentially receive compensation for caregiving to him. I have yet to actually try this... but it was mentioned. I would suggest that anyone seeking to go down this road should be in touch with whatever your local Elder Care office is. They will likely know more?
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I was so hoping to see answers to this question but maybe no one here has done it. Also, maybe more info would be helpful. Are you thinking of getting reimbursed by an agency like medicaid or the VA? I think it can be done in a limited set of circumstances, but I don't yet know the procedure. May I suggest that you call the Help Line? There are knowledgeable folks there who can at least refer you to agency resources. Good luck and blessings in your search.
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