Caption: Mdm Loh can now take charge of her future with help from TOUCH Professional Deputies and Donees
“It is important to make important decisions while we have the mental capacity and not wait till we are very sick. I hope other caregivers and seniors will take time to do their Lasting Power of Attorney so that they can feel assured and confident about their future."
During the pandemic, caregivers like Mdm Loh Khuan Hay went through hard times. The 75-year-old retired seamstress struggled to take care of her frail husband, whose condition had worsened before he passed on in 2020. He suffered from Parkinson’s Disease and dementia.
For 11 years, Mdm Loh’s life revolved around her caregiving duties. When her husband’s sickness progressed, walking became difficult even with the use of a mobility aid. Eventually, he was too weak to walk and was bedridden.
Sadly, plans did not go well for Mdm Loh when she attempted to hire a domestic helper. Instead of receiving help, she found herself shouldering on the burden of caring for her helper who developed a major health issue and had to be hospitalised. At one point, she was caring for both her husband and helper who were warded in the same hospital. COVID-19 restrictions also made it harder for Mdm Loh to be close to her husband even during his final moments before he passed on.
“It was very hard for me as I struggled to cope. I cried every night. I lost 10kg! Fortunately, I had the support of my nieces and nephews who did their best to help me. I knew I had to be strong for my husband,” said Mdm Loh.
Enjoying peace of mind
The unexpected turn of events prompted Mdm Loh to start thinking of her future. She wondered what will happen to her if she is unable to make decisions due to illness or dementia. She did not want to burden anyone. Thankfully, her niece shared with her about TOUCH’s Professional Deputies & Donees service in meeting her future care needs. Mdm Loh then contacted TOUCH and met up with senior social worker Ms Christine Goh. She also shared with her nieces and nephews about her care arrangements with TOUCH.
Caption: Mdm Loh (left) interacting with Ms Christine Goh, TOUCH’s professional donee (right)
“I was relieved to know of such help. It is important to make important decisions while we have the mental capacity and not wait till we are very sick. I hope other caregivers and seniors will take time to do their Lasting Power of Attorney so that they can feel assured and confident about their future,” added Mdm Loh.
Mdm Loh now leads an active and purposeful life as a volunteer. She helps out at various active ageing centres, including providing logistic support, teaching art and accompanying seniors during outings. She also enjoys hobbies like gardening and loves to watch cooking shows to learn new recipes.
Caption: TOUCH Professional Deputies and Donees is supported by a team of social workers who are registered with the Office of the Public Guardian
Call us at 6317 9996 (Office Hours Monday- Friday 9.00am to 6.00pm) or email [email protected] to find out more about our Professional Deputies and Donees service.