It’s no surprise that, as we age, everyday tasks become more demanding. Housekeeping, cooking, and home repairs often cannot be accomplished without some sort of help. Seniors may need assistance with their personal care, medication management, and even financial paperwork. Unfortunately, it’s not just things around the house that become difficult – issues can arise as soon as seniors step out the door as well. One of the primary problems the elderly have is poor access to adequate and reliable transportation. Not only does this keep them socially isolated, but it can spell disaster unless some form of senior transport is provided.
Senior transport: more than just companionship
Escorted transportation isn’t just a luxury – something that’s nice to have so the senior doesn’t feel bored during a trip to the doctor’s. Of course, there is nothing wrong with having company along solely for that purpose. However, there are many other reasons why senior transport is a crucial service.
One of the first reasons for such accompaniment is because your senior may have issues getting to and from the doctors’ on their own. Many are unwilling or unable drive anymore, either due to medical factors (such as poor night vision) or psychological ones (they’re nervous about navigating through heavy traffic or on major roadways).
Public transport troubles
You’d think public transportation would solve issues surrounding the inability to drive, but the former comes with its own challenges as well. Seniors can have just as much trouble with buses, trains, and similar means of travel due to frailty, weakness, poor balance, unsteady gait, forgetfulness, dementia, and more. The risk of falls and other injuries is very real if your senior suffers from these or other age-related conditions.
Bad weather blues
In all our talk about getting to and from the doctor’s, it’s also important to address the possibility of inclement weather. All the challenges mentioned above are doubled or tripled under such circumstances. For instance, someone with arthritic fingers can’t open and close an umbrella with ease, nor can a person with muscle weakness or a walker easily traverse piles of snow and ice. In these conditions, accidents can occur all too easily – and possibly cause your loved permanent harm.
You may sometimes hire transportation that turns out not to be dependable. When this happens, a senior can miss appointments, treatments, and other critical services because (for instance) your cabbie neglected to notify the senior that they had arrived. It’s basically the same as having no ride at all.
A professional you can count on
A qualified senior transport escort can solve all the problems listed above, and possibly even those that can’t be anticipated. A reputable agency will send someone (possibly the same person) who is contracted to be at a certain place at a certain time. They typically provide their own transportation (though they sometimes use the senior’s car if the latter prefers, or an agency vehicle). They can also help the senior navigate public transportation, if that is their wish. They are there for your loved one in all sorts of weather, minimizing their risk of slips, falls, and injuries. And they are demonstrably more reliable than random cab drivers or others who may not show up when they’re supposed to.
Make sure your senior is well-cared for – wherever they go
It’s unlikely anyone needs to spell out the risks that come when seniors fail to see their doctors regularly, go for follow-up appointments, or complete recommended treatments or procedures. As such, senior transport is more than a mere indulgence – it should often be considered a necessity in maintaining senior health and safety. Without the proper transportation and escort, your loved one may be left exposed to serious issues surrounding illness and old age. If you have any doubts about their ability to attend medical visits on their own, protect their well-being with escorted senior transportation.
If you are unsure of how to best help an aging loved one, the trained and compassionate staff at the Institute on Aging is here to help you make that decision and gain the best in at-home senior care. Contact us to find out more.