To discover Medicare and caregiving resources, check out the redesigned caregiving website, debuting Tuesday, April 12, 2011. It’s user-friendly and graphically interesting with a focus on easy information access. At the same time updated site promotes learning, sharing, supporting, and collaborating. Adult children, even if they are not providing a huge amount of caregiving support, would be wise to explore the site and then take their senior parents on a Medicare caregiving resource tour.
Ease of use was a mission focus for website developers, and seniors and their families can gain access to all resources with only a few mouse clicks (one of the most important characteristics of good web design). Thus all of the sections are easily accessible, even for a person with modest web browsing skills. Think of the redesigned Medicare caregiver site as a GPS tool, one that quickly leads caregiver families to problem solving information.
The home page of caregiving Medicare site (http://www.medicaregov/caregiver) is eye-catching, engaging, and welcoming to new users. It’s easy to distinguish one section from another and navigate among them. A click can enlarge the print. Links to all of the important caregiving topics are available on this page.
The website offers multiple opportunities to navigate for information. Thus a green menu bar across the top of the site and menu buttons along the side. A contrasting blue banner-like box stretches across the page near the top with Ask Medicare links, taking users directly to sought-after Medicare resources.
Visitors can register for a regular e-mail newsletter that will include up-do-date Medicare information as well as inform users about upgrades to the caregiving site. To find the e-newsletter link, scroll about half-way down that page on the right-hand side. Your e-mail address will not be shared.
Do you need to find the name of a provider or locate information about managing a health issue? The links are right there on the first page. Does a member of your family need to read about the Medicare basics? Click on the link.
The caregiving site also uses video technologies. People wonder all the time “… how are others are dealing with an issue?” The Tell Your Story feature displays videos made by people who are voluntarily sharing their experience and knowledge. Anyone can make and send in a video — contributions are welcomed and encouraged — so over time this should become a repository of shared information.
What great fun it would be for a grandparent if a digital generation grandchild assisted with developing a script, filming, and editing, and then helped grandmother or grandfather send the video off to the Medicare site to share with others.
My speciality is teaching and learning with a focus on technology. Often I fill my day with activities that relate to web resources. Finding and evaluating resources is part of my work, and I first evaluate them to see if they are easy-to-access and easy to navigate. Next I check to see whether or not the information is useful or not. For my parents I seek websites that will be simple for my mother, a senior and a web power user, to access, while at the same time remaining easy for my dad to use on his iPad.
The new Medicare caregiver website fits the bill!