Chapter 5: Functional Assessment – Weighing and Addressing Your Needs and Those of Your Older Loved Ones

Chapter 5 introduces you to the concept of Activities of Daily Living (ADLs). It then shows you how to assess your or your older loved ones’ ability to accomplish Basic ADLs and Instrumental ADLs. Based on the assessment, the chapter discusses the appropriate types of housing for you or the loved ones being assessed.

5-1      Introduction.
If your parents are still alive, you are likely dealing with, or soon will be dealing with, some aspect of their living facilities and care. You may have other loved ones who rely on you as well. With older loved ones, whether parents or others, your Finding Home – Over 50 plan goes well beyond choosing an appropriate dwelling; it also involves ensuring the availability of varying levels of required care and assistance within the dwelling, neighborhood, and/or broader community. This chapter will assist you in that process…

5-2     Activities of Daily Living (ADL).
The type of residence that is right for your loved ones is dependent upon how well they are currently functioning on their own and are expected to function in the near future. The types and costs of residences catering to the different stages of needs vary accordingly.

A primary measurement method for determining the appropriate type of residence is to perform what healthcare professionals call an assessment of Activities of Daily Living (ADL or ADLs). ADLs are divided into two categories:

– Basic ADLs

– Instrumental ADLS

5-2-1 First Set of ADL Assessment Tables – For John’s Father Eli.

5-2-2 Second Set of ADL Assessment Tables – For Karen’s Father Ben.

5-2-3 Comparative ADL Assessment Grand Totals – Eli versus Ben.
The following table compares the ADL Assessment – IAF Totals for Eli and Ben, presented side by side…

5-3 You Have Assessed the Activities of Daily Living; Now What?
After completing the ADL assessment questions and scoring your loved one(s), you are in a better position to make decisions about the type of housing and level of assistance and care they will require…

5-4     When an Assisted Living Facility Becomes the Choice.
Eventually, moving the loved one(s) to an assisted living facility may become the only viable choice. Often there is a trigger event or situation that tips the balance within each family. Examples may include…

5-5     Bibliography for Chapter 5.