It's important for our members to take an active role in their health care choices. It may be hard to think about, but the person or loved one you are caring for should decide what their health care choices are if they become too sick to make those decisions.
Discuss setting up a living will or naming a power of attorney with the person you are caring for. This information can be given to you, the member’s care team and doctors.
When to Contact your Care Manager
The Case Management team is here to support you. There are many reasons you may need to contact them. Some examples of when you should call them are:
- Change in condition
- Emergency room (ER) visit or hospital admission
- Fall or injury
- Urinary tract infection (UTI)
- Not all agreed upon services are being given
- New diagnosis or medication
- Help to find or change providers
- Hard time making an appointment
- Change in living conditions or work arrangement for the person you are caring for
- Need for more training
- Durable medical equipment (DME) needs to be repaired or replaced
Contact California Health & Wellness Member Services at 1-877-658-0305 (TTY: 711) and ask for Case Management.
When to Go to the Emergency Room
An emergency is when a life could be in danger. It is also when a person could be injured for life or disabled without care.
- Hard time breathing
- Severe chest pain
- Severe bleeding
- Sudden changes in being able to move or speak, or you feel tingles in your arm or leg
- Sudden mental status changes
- Coughing or vomiting blood
- Sudden onset of a severe headache
- Thoughts of killing or hurting yourself
- Severe vomiting or diarrhea
- Behavioral health emergency
Major injuries also need instant care. These include:
- Extreme joint pain or swelling
- Broken bones
If an emergency happens, go to the closest emergency room. If the person is not able to move or it is not safe to move the victim, call 911.
After getting care, the person you are caring for should always call his or her doctor within 24 hours to schedule a follow up visit.
If the illness needs treatment within 24 hours but is not life threatening, visit an urgent care center. Or, call your doctor to get advice and schedule an appointment.
Caregiving can feel like a full-time job. But we all need a break at times. A rest can be helpful for you and the person you are caring for. It gives you time to connect with others and recharge.
Respite can range from a 30-minute break to taking a short vacation. Explore the options through your local Area Agency on Aging to learn more.