Care in old age

Family carers

«My life revolves around work. Besides bringing up our children and my job, I also look after my sick mother. It puts a lot of pressure on me, and I hardly get any time to myself.»

Pflegende Angehörige

Do you care for your mum and find it a massive strain? You're not alone: around 220,000 people look after family members in Switzerland, making them the country's biggest care organisation. Around two thirds of people needing care in Switzerland are looked after by family members – on a rising trend.

People are getting older

The share of the population in the third stage of their lives is constantly increasing. At the same time, families are getting smaller. Younger family members are faced with increasing numbers of relatives belonging to older generations. In addition, there has been a shift in values in Switzerland. Women now place a higher priority on professional advancement and are not always willing to give up work for the family. This means they are often faced with a multiple burden of work, their immediate family and looking after relatives. Men are also increasingly involved in providing support to relatives. They too are having to come to terms with the conflicting demands of family and work.

People look after family members for various reasons: they provide care out of love or a feeling of duty. Money is frequently a reason too. The voluntary work done by family members saves on the cost of professional nursing staff. So in some circumstances the relative does not face the threat of having to sell their house. Fact is, external care costs money and a place in a home can also cost a pretty penny.

"Hidden" patients

The more care a relative needs, the greater the cost of care for their loved ones. Often it's the daughter who provides the care and to a lesser extent the son or husband/wife. Many work and have children themselves. This triple burden sooner or later leads to health problems for some people. This is also shown by the statistics: family carers visit the doctor more frequently and consume more medications than the average person. Scientists therefore describe them as "hidden patients".

Take care of yourself

Health care is not just about providing practical help. Caring for relatives can have an impact on your work, social life as well as physical and mental health. The relationship between the person providing the care and the person receiving the care should never be underestimated, and can have both positive and negative aspects depending on your personal biographies. Not everyone responds in the same way to a new role caring for a relative.

Find out what your limits are and make sure you get some time to unwind every now and again. Think about your own needs for leisure activities or social contact, for example, as well as your professional ambitions. Caring for your sick mother or father until you reach the stage of exhaustion does no-one any good. Talk openly about your situation and exchange views, for example as part of a self-help group. If you work, talk to your employer and ask whether you can temporarily reduce your working hours or take unpaid holiday, for example.

Take up any offers of help

Find out if anyone can provide help and organise outside support as soon as possible. You can ask friends and neighbours to help out with smaller things and divide tasks between family members. Find out what is available from Spitex, Pro Senectute and similar organisations. "Seniors-for-seniors" clubs also provide supportive services.

Do you find caring too much of a burden, or are you not yet confident in your role? Specific courses and professional services and counselling are available to help you. Take advantage of this – for the sake of your health and your family.

Credit in return for the private care you give

If you care for a relative in the same household you may be entitled to a care credit in some circumstances. This means you will in future receive a higher pension in return for the care you have given. Find out about the terms and conditions from your AHV office.

Spitex

Basic insurance
Cost contribution

With home care, the care specialist determines your expected need for care with the direct time requirement. The specialist completes a relevant statement of requirements. We pay for the duration of care required based on the corresponding amount in francs specified by law.

You receive a contribution to the costs for Spitex at home (home nursing care), if prescribed by a doctor.

This is subject to the condition that the chosen Spitex organisation or healthcare professional is qualified and recognised.


Household help

CURA
Agreed daily allowances

Where there is a proven need for care, you will receive up to the insured daily allowance to meet those costs not covered by basic health insurance for medically prescribed household help as soon as the waiting period expires.

Conditions:

  • You receive healthcare benefits from basic health insurance amounting to an average of more than 60 minutes per day.
  • You receive household help from a recognised service provider.
  • You can produce clear evidence of the uncovered costs for household help.

Product information:
CURA
OMNIA
CHF 30 per day

Following an acute inpatient hospital stay, you will receive CHF 30 per day for up to 30 days per calendar year for medically prescribed household help.


Product information:
OMNIA
VIVANTE
Agreed daily benefits

Where there is a proven need for care, you will receive the contractually agreed daily benefits, which you can use at your full discretion (without any obligation to show how you have spent them) – for example, for household help.

The amount of daily benefits you receive depends on the coverage option you have selected and the level of care you need.

Conditions:

  • A doctor's certificate confirming that you require care for more than six months.
  • You must need a level of care of at least 25%.

Product information:
VIVANTE
HOSPITAL ECO
CHF 30 per day

Following an acute inpatient hospital stay, you will receive CHF 30 per day for up to 30 days per calendar year for medically prescribed household help.


Product information:
HOSPITAL ECO
HOSPITAL FLEX
CHF 50 per day

Following an acute inpatient hospital stay, you will receive CHF 50 per day for up to 30 days per calendar year for medically prescribed household help.

This cover is available provided you have also chosen the optional FLEX supplementary module.


Product information:
HOSPITAL FLEX
HOSPITAL PLUS
CHF 60 per day

Following an acute inpatient hospital stay, you will receive CHF 60 per day for up to 30 days per calendar year for medically prescribed household help.


Product information:
HOSPITAL PLUS
HOSPITAL PLUS BONUS
CHF 60 per day

Following an acute inpatient hospital stay, you will receive CHF 60 per day for up to 30 days per calendar year for medically prescribed household help.


Product information:
HOSPITAL PLUS BONUS
HOSPITAL PLUS CLASSICA
CHF 50 per day

Following an acute inpatient hospital stay, you will receive CHF 50 per day for up to 30 days per calendar year for medically prescribed household help.


Product information:
HOSPITAL PLUS CLASSICA
HOSPITAL COMFORT
CHF 90 per day

Following an acute inpatient hospital stay, you will receive CHF 90 per day for up to 30 days per calendar year for medically prescribed household help.


Product information:
HOSPITAL COMFORT
HOSPITAL COMFORT BONUS
CHF 90 per day

Following an acute inpatient hospital stay, you will receive CHF 90 per day for up to 30 days per calendar year for medically prescribed household help.


Product information:
HOSPITAL COMFORT BONUS
HOSPITAL COMFORT CLASSICA
CHF 70 per day

Following an acute inpatient hospital stay, you will receive CHF 70 per day for up to 30 days per calendar year for medically prescribed household help.


Product information:
HOSPITAL COMFORT CLASSICA