Why a simple checklist can be great towards elder care?

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There are books which could be about just one single idea but they find application in for various fields. “Checklist Manifesto” authored by Atul Gawande is one such book. As the name suggests, the book is about the humble checklist. The book has found appreciation and application in various fields. For people who are interested in good health and want to live a healthy life, there are some great learnings and insights which one can collect from the book. The book, in a classic Malcolm Gladwell style, narrates the complexities of operating in the field of building construction, space science and even relatively simple things like event management.

The core idea of the book is about how a simple checklist can contribute towards accomplishing complex works like intensive medical care, space science, and many other things. The author writes about how practices like medicine, construction, event management use the idea of the checklist to do simple as well as a complex issue.

The book opens with chapters where the author describes his personal experience and handling of medical cases. These cases have been presented to suggest the complexities in the field of medical science and how often simple solutions are missed. While reading the cases, it does make one think about the suffering that people undergo undergoing medical treatment. This book makes one realize how prevention of disease should be prioritized to avoid going through the ordeal for surgeries. While not all health issues are avoidable, we can surely avoid many complications by taking good preventive care.

The inevitability of diseases and aging applies to all of us but much more to our aging parents. Specifically, for our aging parents, a lot of their well-being depends on how their health is taken care of. Health in their cases is a combination of mental, physical, emotional and physical well-being. All these demands a good amount of care and attention from our side. We know what to be done, and even if we are unaware of a certain problem we know how to work around it. The bigger challenge is in sticking onto the routine of doing.

What is the solution then? Can a checklist be used to help address the challenge? Checklists, as an idea, is often belittled because of its simplicity.  But they do help in making us stick to a routine.

Let’s see what this checklist can look like.

1. Make a call to them every day at. Daily nudge is a great thing.
2. Share some quote or an image through what’s app.
3. Send then the lunch/ dinner pic which you are having.
4. Check about their medicine intake daily.
5. Check about the doctor’s visit.
6. Gift them something every month. Even a small notebook counts.
7. Call their friends or relative who they hang out with to socialize with- This way you help them strengthen their own bond and offer more context to the discussion about you.

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