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Caregiver Contest Finalist Peter: The 40/70 Rule

Aimee Sharp
Author | Shield HealthCare
09/27/18  10:21 AM PST
40/70 Rule

Peter O. is from California, and was one of forty finalists chosen out of the over 1,000 entries to our “What Advice Would You Give to a Fellow Caregiver?” Contest. You can find our grand prize and runner up winners here.

What advice would you give a fellow caregiver?

Do not wait too long before taking action. At the beginning stages of caregiving, it will be a struggle for you because you won’t know who to turn to for help. You’re new to the family caregiver scene. It’s confusing and sometimes frightening.

And it may be the first time that your relative needs your help. This is a first-time experience for the two of you and equally scary for both. Maybe there’s a sudden change in the relative’s health or, over time, chronic illness has made them weak and dependent.

You must take action now and learn to reach out to people, services, and information that will be a guide for you to help care for a loved one. The earlier you act and find support, the sooner you’ll get a handle on the confusion and frustration that riddles the caregiving process.

The First Key Step for Caregiving:

You may be familiar with the 40/70 rule. If you, the family member is age 40, and your relative is 70 years of age or older, then it’s time to have “the talk” about senior care issues. It’s my opinion, waiting ‘till a loved one is over 70 is too late.

Elder care conversations should begin much earlier than 70. The sooner you bring up the difficult topics (who will care for you, can you afford care at home and can you pay for assisted living) the easier the conversations will be.

When is a good time to have the talk? The best time is when a parent or relative is in good health, active, and independent.

But if you have waited too long and a parent is in the hospital needing your help on what to do next, then you must reach out to the local community and get support.

Click here to head to the contest home page and read more advice.


Finalists were selected by the Marketing Team at Shield HealthCare. Those finalists were submitted to a panel of independent judges who picked three grand prize winners and five runners up. The judges included: Sandra Mitchell, Award-winning KCAL 9 news anchor and breast cancer survivor, and the Landers family: actor and comedian David Landers (“Laverne & Shirley”) who is living with MS, his wife Kathy and his daughter Natalie (“The Middle”). Click here to learn more.