Say It Isn't So

The Century Summit

The Stanford University Center on Longevity’s fourth annual Century Summit took place this week.  In two full days of panels, the brightest minds in the field reported on the latest thinking about aging and the changing demographics in our country.

There were way more panels than I could watch on my computer, but I was particularly impressed with one about caregivers.  Having been a caregiver myself prior to losing Peter, I lived through the stress and worry that comes as one watches a loved one decline.  It’s difficult enough to go through this process, but unlike for many, I didn’t have to leave a job and we were lucky enough to have access to good medical care.

Enter WA Cares Fund, the State of Washington’s answer to supporting caregivers.  Here’s how it happens.  All working Washingtonians contribute .58% of their income When care is needed, workers have earned a benefit of $36,500 (adjusted for inflation) to help pay for the services of a caregiver.  This may not be sufficient, but it’s a good start.

As far as I know, there is no such federal program.

There should be.


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Becky in California

This is a wonderful idea. I hope it catches on in other states, or becomes a national program. It's a tragedy how many in this country are forced to choose between earning an necessary income, and providing care and comfort for a loved one, especially under the tremendous emotional stress that is already present when someone near and dear is suffering and you need and want to be there for them.

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