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Caring for Our Parents: Inspiring Stories of Families Seeking New Solutions to America's Most Urgent Health Crisis Hardcover – May 26, 2009


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press; First Edition edition (May 26, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312380992
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312380991
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.7 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #702,866 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Longtime Business Week health reporter Gleckman takes readers on a guided tour of group homes, nursing homes, assisted living and the differences between Medicare, Medicaid and long-term care insurance in his comprehensive overview of the current state of long-term care in the U.S. Through interviews with family caregivers, professionals, the cared-for and reformers seeking alternatives to the current system, Gleckman does an impressive job of explaining our current elder-care system and those of other developed nations, and proposes possible solutions to an issue of growing importance as boomers become seniors. (June)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

“Compelling personal stories, helpful information about where to turn for assistance, and ideas for ways to strengthen the safety net that too often fails families facing crisis. Caring for Our Parents is a book for everyone, but particularly for Boomers with aging parents or loved ones, and for our elected representatives who need guidance on how we can do better.”--John Rother, Executive Vice-President AARP

“There are lots of books about eldercare, but none like Caring for Our Parents. By telling his personal story and those of others, Howard Gleckman helps us understand why caring for our parents is such a challenge. This is a must read for every Baby Boomer.”--Suzanne Mintz, President, National Family Caregivers Association

“Although the U.S. spends far more on health care than other country, its treatment of millions of elderly and disabled is shameful. Even when families are willing and able to provide care at home, the ‘system’ makes it nearly impossible. In this well-written and compassionate book, Howard Gleckman doesn’t just describe the problem, he expands our vision of what long-term care should be.”--Kathleen A. Kelly, Executive Director, Family Caregiver Alliance/National Center on Caregiving

“Howard Gleckman knows firsthand about caring for his elderly parents. In his illuminating Caring for Our Parents, Gleckman shines a spotlight on the financial and physical price we pay to help our loved ones in a fractured and inadequate network of long-term care services. As he profiles families who meet those challenges with love, determination, and grace, he raises important questions about how our nation will cope as the enormous Baby Boomer generation ages. Caring for our Parents is a wake-up call to a graying nation.”--Mary Beth Franklin, Senior Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance

“Compelling personal stories, helpful information about where to turn for assistance, and ideas for ways to strengthen the safety net that too often fails families facing crisis. Caring for Our Parents is a book for everyone, but particularly for Boomers with aging parents or loved ones, and for our elected representatives who need guidance on how we can do better.”--John Rother, Executive Vice-President, AARP


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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Steven Goldberg on June 25, 2009
Format: Hardcover
The book offers tons of practical advice--of tremendous value to anyone going through the horrid experience of caring for an elderly parent. But it manages to do it while still being a great read, too. The people Gleckman interviews come alive on the page. You'd think their stories would be depressing, but, instead, they're inspiring.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By David Lemmond on August 24, 2009
Format: Hardcover
What makes Gleckman's book both interesting and important is the way he connects the complex issues of health reform with the real-life consequences of misguided health-care policy. Lost all too often in our current chaotic debate on health care is how these choices and decisions become the centerpiece in the lives of us all. Lost in some current debate is the simple notion that we will all get old, that we will all need care as we age, and that all of our good intentions and well-intentioned planning may not be enough to prevent financial or personal disaster for our parents and ourselves. Gleckman presents us with human problems that have been caused by, and thus can be remedied by, our own decisions.

I would surely suggest this book to anyone interested in any aspect of health care reform; to anyone who is or may need to care for an aging parent; and to anyone who intends to age happily and gracefully. In other words, I recommend it to everyone.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Ed Kean on January 11, 2010
Format: Hardcover
"Caring For Our Parents" tackles with aplomb and sensitivity what is bound to become a major challenge in coming decades--how to provide long-term health care for an aging US population. Caring for elderly parents is increasingly a major challenge for members of the Baby Boom generation like myself. With the huge number of Baby Boomers set to begin retirement in the next couple of decades, the issue of developing ways of providing long-term care for the aged, and paying for that care, will become a pressing and daunting challenge. The current battle over changes to the health care insurance system likely is a preview of the debates that will arise again as the nation is forced to confront the issue of providing long-term care for its elderly citizens in a humane, cost-effective fashion.

Howard Gleckman deftly frames the issues in this debate in a relatively concise book that will appeal to both lay readers and health care policy specialists. The book features both touching stories of people around the country trying to come up with solutions to care for their aging parents, as well as informed discussion of some of the emerging alternatives for providing long-term care--and the options for financing that care. The book examines a range of alternatives to the traditional nursing home, and offers a variety of innovative solutions for financing long-term care. A discussion of how other countries deal with this issue is particularly illuminating. Howard Gleckman's book discusses a range of potential solutions in a civil, non-preachy manner that is a welcome contrast to the shrill, combative style of debate that has become so in vogue on the airwaves. Hopefully, the book will prompt deeper examination and analysis that will encourage creative solutions to deal with a difficult problem.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Edwin Heck on October 8, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Americans are living longer than ever before. A sixty-five year old woman today will likely live into her eighties, and men are living longer too. Many of these will become the "frail elderly," unable to dress themselves or go to the bathroom without help. Many will suffer from strokes, dementia, or just becoming weaker and weaker. They are, as the author says, "dying in slow motion." Many are cared for by children and relatives, as Gleckman and his wife cared for their parents. Many will need trained home health care workers or more likely will end up in nursing homes, living there, often for years, until the end finally comes.
Mr Gleckman goes beyond the angry all-or-nothing, either-or debates raging across our country about the good or evil of a national health care plan. He interviews many quite ordinary people, who live far from any centers of political power. We meet both the elderly, who desperately need health care, and those who give it as best they can like family members, often exhausting themselves and their financial resources, to care for those they love. He travels to different parts of the country to examine modest experiments in small-population group homes, community care, and in programs to train health care givers, both family members and professional workers. He also examines the good and the bad in the national health systems of Canada, England and Europe.
He tells people's stories with simple clarity and touching modesty, allowing the people he interviews to speak for themselves, rather than using them as tools in an angry, partisan argument. You will be touched and even made hopeful by this book. And most of all you will leave the book informed in both mind and conscience.
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