One of the most prolific voices speaking out for baby boomers, seniors, and their caregivers is that of Dr. Alexis Abramson, known simply as Doctor Alexis.
The author of Home Safety for Seniors and The Caregivers Survival Handbook, Doctor Alexis is also the winner of numerous awards, including the Working Woman Magazine General Entrepreneurial Excellence Award, Atlanta Small Business Person of the Year Award, American Society of Aging Outstanding Small Business Award, and an Emmy. You are probably familiar with her as the on-air expert gerontologist for NBC’s Today show and Weekend Today.
Below is one of Doctor Alexis’ videos, the first in a series she has done for caregivers. It focuses on planning issues. Check it out:
As you have gathered from the video, being a caregiver is a complex and time-intensive task. Especially so in the modern day, when it can often come into conflict with working life. On her blog, Doctor Alexis addresses this and other topics, bringing a wealth of nuance to consideration of the subject.
Employed caregivers tend to be younger and are responsible for three or four generations. It may take time to adjust work and family duties. Barriers in the community (office hours, poor accessibility for people with disabilities, etc.) can also create problems. In a recent survey nearly two-thirds of caregivers listed eldercare benefits in the workplace as their most pressing concern, trumping such evergreen healthcare issues as cost of care, patients rights and insuring the uninsured.
She then covers many of the common options available, such as long-term care insurance, elder-care reimbursement, counseling, and others.
It’s not just the seemingly practical issues that Doctor Alexis addresses in her works — things like sex and fashion — all the bells and whistles of life are fair game. Just because someone is older does not mean that their interests and needs end with housing and medical care.
Marla Lenher, a reporter for Fox News, wrote the following concerning the good doctor’s views on fashion:
‘Major clothiers need to make clothes that are senior-friendly,’ says Abramson. ‘You don’t have to re-work everything in the line, just add some changes and make them more functional.’ She notes that as people age they have more trouble with clasps, buttons and zippers — things that can be easily remedied.
Abramson is passionate, verging on fanatical, about improving seniors’ lives, and she is impatient with clothing designers who she considers behind the times.
‘To me it’s crazy,’ that seniors are ignored, she says. ‘You can make a billion dollars if you are aware this market is available.’
All in all, Doctor Alexis seems quite adroit at addressing and contextualizing the concerns of boomers and beyond, as well as those who assume the vital role of being their caregivers.
Source: “Caregiver Introduction – Alexis Abramson, Ph.D.,” Alexis Abramson YouTube Channel, 06/23/10
Source: “Caregiving and Maintaining a Career,” Doctor Alexis Approves
Source: “Helping Hand for Caregivers,” Chicago Tribune, 04/08/04
Source: “Fashion File: Senior Citizens Are Going for Glamour,” Fox News, 02/07/01
Image by jasleen_kaur, used under its Creative Commons license.