Capitol Hill Village Be-Prepared Agenda
Capitol Hill Village encourages its members to live full and active lives, pursuing hobbies,
socializing with friends, and attending cultural and educational programs. The Village also
encourages its members to plan for the future, when the inevitable consequences of aging bring
changes that require us to seek the help of others. There are documents to prepare and things to
do now that can help ease that transition – for you, your family, and your friends. Our Be-
Prepared Agenda has five categories of recommendations.
Communicating with the Health and Legal Systems
Durable Power of Attorney for financial decision-making. This document assigns to the
person you designate the power to act for you if you are suddenly incapacitated, allowing him or
her, for example, to pay your bills and carry out other routine obligations and activities. You
may specify the circumstances under which a power of attorney becomes effective.
Durable Power of Attorney for health care decision-making. This document, which can include advance directives regarding what medical treatments you do not want at the end of your life, will enable the person you designate to carry out your wishes.
Vital Information Form. In the event of a medical emergency, it’s important for firstresponders and emergency
health-care workers to have easy access to your health-related information (chronic
conditions, medications, allergies, insurance coverage, powers of attorney,
etc.). Prepare a one-page form and store this information at home, where it can be easily found,as well as on the Web (for when you are away from home). For further information, see www.VialOfLife.com.
Driver Retirement Plan. Make a plan that addresses the issue of when and under what circumstances it is no longer safe for you to drive, and discuss with your adult children and concerned friends. Don’t wait until you injure yourself or others in an automobile accident.
Last Will and Testament. A “Last Will” is a legal document appointing a personal representative to take charge of your estate and distribute your possessions and financial assets in the ways that you specify. In the absence of a Will, that function will be carried out by the local government. Everyone should have a Will, however simple or complex their financial situation,to ensure that their personal wishes are honored.
Letters of Instruction and Information. While a Will is the principal legal instrument for managing your estate, it is extremely
helpful for your family and personal representative to have documents that list your
assets, the locations of important documents, financial account numbers, descriptions
of your possessions, and desires regarding funeral arrangements.
Knowing How You’ll Pay for Long-Term Care
The experience of your parents and siblings will suggest how many years you may need
to pay for personal assistance as you get older. A little research will reveal the
averages based on gender, living habits, and chronic conditions. Most of us will
require some form of help for some period of time, but it’s difficult to calculate
in advance for how long and at what cost.
Would a reverse mortgage be right for you? Should you purchase long-term care insurance? Are you eligible for Medicaid? A Village volunteer will review your situation and help make a plan for paying for personal care, when and if it becomes necessary.
Making Your Home Accessible
Call the Village to arrange for a home assessment that identifies needed repairs or replacements
and an energy assessment that recommends ways to defend against seasonal loss of heat or cool
air. For those who would like a full home inspection, CHV recommend a professional service
that includes photographs and explanations of needed repairs, inside and out. If you have
difficulty walking, a Village volunteer can help by suggesting ways to make your home easier to
navigate by removing rugs, rearranging furniture, or disposing of clutter. Should you plan home
renovations, the Village will help you plan adaptations consistent with “universal design,” which
includes a range of adaptations that facilitate accessibility for both oldsters and youngsters, and
may add to the value of your house.
Staying physically active, socializing with friends, exercising your brain – these activities all
contribute to healthy living and aging well. The Village offers a monthly calendar of activities
and events, from balance and fitness classes to the literary club.
Getting Rid of Stuff
The Village will help you find a new home for unused clothes, decorative objects, and furniture.
We will pick up and dispose of hazardous waste and paper files that require shredding.