I drove Mom the 2.5 hours to see the elder law attorney closest to us about initiating a care contract. She was very nice & much, MUCH more informative than any of the precious 2 lawyers that I had consulted in our previous state.
Since my father was a Korean War vet, the lawyer suggested that Mom apply for VA benefits to help her pay me for her in-home care. In order to do that & to document for Medicaid that the money Mom will be paying me is not a gift, the lawyer wants me to document the various things that I do for Mom every day & how much time each task requires of me.
For those of you providing care under a care contract, what system do you use to document your care? Do you keep your info by date, e.g. 6/10/15 - Cooked Mom's breakfast: 30 min., changed Mom's bed: 15 min., took Mom to doctor: 1 hr. Or do you keep separate pages for each task & then record your date & time on the corresponding page? Also, how do I figure these times. For example, let's say it takes me 30 min to combine the ingredients for her dinner & an hour for it to cook. Do I record only the 30 min I was actively combining ingredients or 1.5 hours for the total prep & cook time? When it comes to washing clothes, do I record only the time to sort & place the clothes into the machine or do I record the total time from sorting to removal at the end of the wash cycle? Lastly, what all do you claim & document as care, other than the obvious like cooking, cleaning, bathing, dressing, feeding (if needed), med administration, grocery shopping & transport to appointments? I try to take her for a 30 min walk each evening (weather permitting) & occasional trips to gardens, parks or other tourist places. Can I claim that time under "activities/entertainment"? I keep a large garden to grow some of our own food & help hold down food costs. Can I claim that maintenance time, only if Mom assists as an "activity" or not at all? What about the time I spend caring for her dog? Mom tends to sundown. How do I document any time required to re-orient her and follow her around to assure her safety?
I know these questions sound ridiculous & obsessively hair-splitting but I want to make certain that things are getting documented correctly so Mom gets the financial assistance she deserves but I also don't want to over-document my time to the point that it looks like I "faked stuff" & red flags are raised if she ever needs a nursing facility & Medicaid does their look-back.