Elderly parents often need assistance
Your father is a veteran. He served in the Air Force a long time ago, and whether or not he talked much about his time in service, you know he took pride in it and formed some strong lifelong friendships with the other servicemen he spent time with.
Through the years your father may have been an incredibly independent and strong individual. He didn’t need much help with anything, it seemed, but as he’s gotten older and his health has been in decline, he’s needed more and more assistance from time to time.
That responsibility has seemed to fall on you.
As the years progressed, it seems like you are more and more responsible for taking care of him. It might be your proximity to him. You live in the same town and to the rest your family, it should be no problem or any big deal to you to stop by and help him, even if it’s every day. You know otherwise, though.
Guilt adult children may feel about caring for elderly parents
It has been taking a toll on your personal life, your work life, and your quality of life. Still, you feel guilty if you even consider other options. After all, there’s no way your father could even consider affording hiring a home care aide. He just doesn’t have the kind of money saved up and his income is a limited pension.
Is there a VA Home Care Program?
This is the time to investigate whether your parents qualify for a pension through the Department of Veterans Affairs which can include the Aid and Attendance benefit. This VA pension was developed following World War I as a way to help soldiers returning home from the war who had been seriously injured. It paid for support as they recuperated from their injuries or other disabilities.
Through the years it has expanded to provide financial support to wartime veterans of all ages, whether they saw active combat or not. This pension could pay up to $1,788 per month for help with activities of daily living. If your father qualifies, he could choose to use the pension for in home care support, if your father can prove it’s absolutely necessary for his basic care and daily life right now.
Aid and Attendance Qualifications
In order to qualify, a veteran needs to have limited financial resources and have served a minimum of 90 days active duty service in one of the major branches of the US military. At least one day of his or her service needs to have fallen during a time of active combat. That doesn’t mean he or she needs to have been in combat, but the time of service has to fall during an official time of combat, such as World War II, the Korean War, or the Vietnam Conflict. The surviving spouse of the wartime veteran is also eligible for the pension and Aid and Attendance benefit.
The Gulf War would still qualify as active combat, but the significant difference for this situation is that veterans need to have served two years active duty to qualify for the Aid and Attendance Benefit if they served during the Gulf War.
Along with wartime service and financial limitations, veterans need to have a non-service connected disability which requires the assistance with activities of daily living. If under 65 years of age, veterans can submit a letter from Social Security proving a disability.
For more information and to learn about veterans aid and attendance, contact Veteran’s Home Care at (888) 314-6075.