Caregivers: Servant Leaders of the 21st Century

By Kevin Brown | Bio

In my last post, I shared my observations concerning the ability of my mother-in-law to embrace change. This week I thought I would focus on the challenges faced by her primary caregiver, my wife. Rather than address the challenges in the relationship between adults and their aging parents, I will share some of the challenges caregivers (family or friends) increasingly face from healthcare providers. Some of these challenges may indeed be unique to our province and country of residence (Alberta, Canada), but surely some will exist in your community as well. One of the third-party challenges my wife faces in caring for her mother pertains to her mother’s doctor. My mother-in-law is 91 years of age and, not surprisingly, has a number of medical concerns. She is a diabetic, has a bladder that is tipped and does not fully drain (therefore she experiences periodic bladder infections), and while she can walk on her own, she does benefit from the use of a walker as her balance isn’t all it used to be. 

My wife books her mother’s medical appointments and shuttles her mom back and forth to her doctor.  Recently, my wife picked her mom up to take her to the doctor to receive the results of some blood work as a result of a previous bladder infection. On the way to the doctor, her mother explained her toe was bleeding (not a good thing for a diabetic), and so upon arrival at the doctor’s office my wife asked them to check her mom’s foot.  The response

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