Help for Those ‘In the Middle’

elder careOur forties can be a tricky age, and not just for the obvious reasons…slowing metabolism, declining energy and the inability to pull off wearing a mini skirt. It can also be an age when we are yanked in two or more directions as we care for kids that either need constant supervision, or to be driven all over the tri-state area while simultaneously having to look after an aging parent or grandparent. This ‘in the middle’ phase can easily become a time when you are stretched too thin and unable to fully be there for everyone that needs you. For some of us, it’s a time to ask for help.

I recently spoke to Mark Stappenbeck, who owns Assisting Hands Home Care of Bergen County and was impressed and comforted by the services that his group offers. (Full disclosure, Mark’s great company is one of Tips’ newest advertisers).  Assisting Hands is a home health care agency that rigorously screens and places qualified aides to help families in need of various levels of assistance. Their help runs the gamut from post-surgical assistance for a loved one, to simpler needs such as driving to medical appointments, meal preparation, and laundry services. In terms of post-surgery help, their goal is to make the home-coming as easy as possible, providing help in the total recovery process by assisting with personal hygiene, bathing and dressing, medication monitoring, driving to medical appointments, all to help your mom/dad/aunt/grandparent get back on their feet again.

What sets Assisting Hands apart from similar services is their screening process, that includes two interviews; background and motor vehicle checks; drug screening; and licensure and reference checks.  Successful candidates then complete an orientation program and receive ongoing supervision by Mark’s Director of Nursing.  Also important, the caregivers are employees not contractors.  Mark’s company bonds and insures them.

I also love the way they follow-up with each of their families. They visit with every client in order to thoroughly understand their needs and they remain involved during the course of the care.

It really is nice to know that help is there when you need it.



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Author: Jennifer Hamlet

Jennifer is the curator for Ridgewood and would love any feedback or suggestions you may have.


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