Caregiving isn’t limited to middle age women caring for their aging parents. The important act of caring for a loved one occurs many times on life's journey and can begin very unexpectedly. It's impossible to predict a spouse or partner being diagnosed with cancer, a high risk pregnancy, a child born with a physical illness or developmental challenges or even a sibling with mental illness. We know the toll this takes on caregivers who also care very much about their career responsibilities. It is overwhelming but not impossible with the right tools and support.
Women are more likely than men to take on caregiving duties. If employers aren't presenting a caregiver friendly culture, women feel they are unable to share their challenges which leads to greater stress and higher presenteeism and absenteeism.
Emily is the proud new mom of Aiden who was born just two weeks ago. She has worked as an administrative assistant at her current company for 5 years. Emily was diagnosed with gestational diabetes during her pregnancy as well as high blood pressure. It was important she keep track of her blood sugar and blood pressure throughout her pregnancy. She had to take maternity leave early because of her condition. Emily used the alska Connected Caregiving solution to track her biometrics as well as keep family updated on her progress. She shared ultrasound photos with her carefully chosen team of family and friends and even links to her baby registry. The alska calendar made it easy for family to bring over meals when Emily was on bed rest and when Aiden's arrival was on the horizon, she let everyone know with one simple, secure update. She now uses alska to get updates from her nanny who is home with Aiden when Emily and her husband Matthew are at work. They love getting photos and being able to receive updates on Aiden's nap and feeding schedule.
William is a single dad to Charlie who is 6 years-old and was recently diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. William travels quite a bit for his job and has a full-time nanny, Caitlyn. William is able to stay connected even when he is traveling because Caitlyn enters daily updates in the alska portal along with photos of Charlie’s soccer games and school field trips. She also keeps track of Charlie’s blood sugar and insulin levels in alska. They use the alska calendar to keep track of Charlie’s sport activities, music lessons and William’s travel schedule. Charlie’s school nurse is also a part of their care team and is able to access important health information such as medication doses, allergies and blood sugar trends. It gives William peace-of-mind and feeling like he’s on top of things even when he has to be away from home. William also likes the virtual support groups where he can connect with other parents who have a child with diabetes.
Eric's wife Amanda was recently diagnosed with brain cancer. They have been married for three years and have a daughter, Sophie, who is 2 years old and the light of their lives. They moved to Seattle when Eric received a promotion but this meant moving away from both of their families and a strong support system. They are both very grateful for the great health insurance benefits Eric's employer provides but Eric worries about the security of his job with all of the time he has taken off since Amanda's diagnosis. Family alternates visiting from Michigan to help take Amanda to her chemotherapy treatments and other appointments and taking care of Sophie. They keep track of everyone's visits and of Amanda's appointments in alska. Eric is able to get notifications whenever family enters an update on Amanda's doctor's visit or if she has a medication change. Chosen friends and family are able to stay connected and offer words of support and encouragement even though they live far away. Amanda securely stores clinic visit notes, laboratory results and other testing in alska so she can easily access it and share it with her healthcare professionals. Eric utilizes the virtual support groups to learn tips on how to take care of himself and be a good advocate for Amanda during this challenging time.