As a long-distance caregiver, one of the first and most important things to do is to get organized. Get as much information as you can about:
- Current medications
- Medical paperwork
- Health plan information
- Medicaid and Medicare status
- Names and contact information for all care providers
If you’re a caregiver for a senior, older adult or someone with special needs, you’ll also want to be able to talk to their care providers. Make sure you or another caregiver has permission to get medical updates from doctors. You may also need to get other permissions to be able to oversee your loved one’s Medicaid, Medicare and Social Security benefits.
It may be helpful to keep important household, medical and financial information together in one place. Be sure you can access it on the go so you can respond to things in real time. If you’re sharing caregiving duties with other people, you might want to create a secure online folder. That way, any of you can access the information when you need it. There are also a number of free apps to help organize caregiving using a smart phone.