Jordan Burke Meets with a client and her daughter.

Jordan Burke meets with a client and her daughter.

Kim Allison participated in a medical program for patients with memory problems.  She observed how professionals assess mental capacity and recommend medications for cognitively impaired people.  One gentleman had advanced dementia, and his grandchildren were exhausted from caring for him.  They asked the physicians if they could just leave him at the hospital.  While we often hear about difficult issues related to caregiver stress, this family’s level of despair was certainly far beyond the norm.

In the Elder Law Clinic, students learn about resources to help families coping with dementia and other serious illnesses.  They might suggest an adult day program or inquire about the relatives’ getting time off under the Family and Medical Leave Act.  They  often suggest using the Senior Services’ Help Line and support groups at the J. Paul Sticht Center on Aging.  We have great services in our community, but families are still struggling with the burdens of caregiving.

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