CAREGIVING – DONT GO IT ALONE

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Professional Health Advocacy is a growing field that is widely misunderstood. It is growing for a reason;: getting what you need from the fractured health care system takes a huge toll.

The high costs that come with being a caregiver for the elderly was the subject of a recent article in JAMA.  The report concluded that 14.7 million caregivers are assisting 7.7 million older adults, 6.5 million (44.1%) provide substantial help, and 4.4 million (29.8%) provide some help. Caregivers providing substantial help with health care were significantly more likely to experience emotional difficulty, restrictions in preferred activities, and work productivity loss. Still, only one-quarter use supportive services.

In that study, almost half (45.5%) of the caregivers providing substantial help with health care assisted an older adult with dementia. The National Association on Caregiving released a study on the particularly more difficult challenges for those On pins and Needles: Caregiving of Adults with Mental Illness.

Per the report these caregivers are especially vulnerable.  They face complex, high burden care situations, resulting in higher caregiver stress and strain.  On average they are 54 years old providing 32 hours of care each week and have been providing care for a long time: about 9 years.  Not surprisingly the report identifies “startling inadequacies in the U.S. health care system.”

The recommendations suggest “Include(ing) caregivers as part of the health care team, in ways that allow them to understand their loved one’s diagnosis without limiting the patient’s independence. Policies and practice should fully include individuals, families, providers, and supports.”

These supports include Professional Health Advocates. When family members are overwhelmed, Professionals can help identify resources to reduce the burdens and can help navigate the Health Care system to get more of the attention and care needed and overall reduce the strains. Those that use Professional Health Advocate services –  Hedge Lucky – and the more advanced the planning, the lower the burden and the luckier they are.

For more information on how Professional Health Advocates may help you, contact us The Lucky Hedgehog Company, Inc. at 212-600-0234 or Info@luckyHedgehog.com.

CONNECTIONS

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Connecting is essential.  Not just machines connecting via the internet, or making connections on social media, but to connect the dots between important concepts or events is essential.    Successful advocacy begins with collecting data and analyzing so as to connect the dots and determine desired outcomes.  Further contemplation of  key strengths and obstacles allows for connection to opportunities allowing goal achievement.

Sometimes connections are obvious.  Those seeking to link the horrendous murders in Colorado to gun violence or anti abortion rhetoric will easily be able to make their case.

Other connections are not as clear, even though quite real.  When masses focus on such “explanations” lost are the innumerable other factors and consequences of such violence.  Today’s agenda affects tomorrow’s direction and the details are often amorphous.

The sunflower might remind us to look for the unseen connections.  Clearly the shape and color of the blossom evoke the splendor of glorious Sun.  Yet, more directly – even though not concretely seen – is the manner in which the stems lean toward the radiance as if there were a string connecting them.

Indeed, illuminating such connections, in every aspect of our clients challenge,  is essential.  Luckily, we know how to look at connection.

DATA HEDGE

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Darrel Huff, the author of the classic How to Lie with Statistics would likely have had a field day with the confluence of events that we are facing.  Despite the rise of BIG DATA where we generate in excess of 2.5 exabytes of information daily, the “forces that be” continue to manipulate information to yield results that tend to persuade towards their predetermined preferred outcome.  Thus, by changing the questionnaire the CDC was able to double the numbers of the Autistic population from one year to the next.  By “inversion” Pfizer, at a time that pharmaceutical companies are taking a beating in the US Presidential election cycle, is able to keep enormous sums form tax authorities.  By whimsical selection, the numbers of victims of the ever increasing outrageous violence around the world vacillates wildly.

While some look at the 3Vs of Big Data as Volume, Velocity, and Variety, it would seem more than prudent to consider Verification.  Data manipulated can be used for you or used against you.  To Hedge Data, we look to find the thread that run through it and will bring clients together in a strategic method that advocates for their preferred outcomes.

FORWARD

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Politicians debate the future solutions to past problems.  Daily we are bombarded with News.

New information, New situations, New technology, New challenges; all begging for new solutions.

This space will be dedicated to exploring the problems that we face and creatively forging solutions that may be implemented, monitored and updates with News. 

Please join us in this important conversations for solutions for a better tomorrow by adding your thoughts, and connecting these conversations with folks who have interest inclination and capacity to Hedge Lucky.

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