On Thursday, February 8, more than 125 volunteers and staff will be in Boise advocating on behalf of AARP members and all older Idahoans on the crucial issue of Family Caregiving. While meeting with members of the legislature, these volunteers and staff will ask lawmakers to support Senate Bill 1262, the Patient Caregiver Support Act.
According to the 2017 AARP Idaho Caregiving Survey, more than 80 percent of Idaho registered voters age 45 and older support the measures in SB 1262, the Patient Caregiver Support Act which will help unpaid family caregivers when their loved ones are admitted into the hospital and as they transition home. The bill features three important provisions for hospitals to do:
- Upon admission into a hospital, the patient is asked if they want to record the name of a family caregiver. With the patient’s consent, the name of the family caregiver is recorded;
- That caregiver is notified when the patient is to be discharged to another facility or back home; and,
- The facility must provide instructions of the medical tasks – such as medication management, injections, wound care, and transfers – that the family caregiver will need to perform at home.
“Family caregivers are unsung heroes and deserve common sense solutions that will increase patient outcomes and reduce the stress often associated with performing complex medical tasks,” said Lupe Wissel, AARP Idaho state director. “The Patient Caregiver Support Act will improve the quality of life for the caregivers and those receiving care.”
In Idaho, at any given time, 200,000 family caregivers provide unpaid care for their loved ones valued at more than $2 billion annually. Family caregivers also help delay or prevent more costly institutional care and unnecessary hospitalizations, saving taxpayer dollars.
Lobby Day participants will have an opportunity to speak with legislators, enjoy lunch at the Capitol rotunda, tour the Capitol, attend committee hearings and share their caregiving story