In February Dorla Walker was laid off from her job. Because she was now home with her father, her home health care agency tried to take away her daytime aide. Walker managed to convince them that she needed to look for a job during the day and therefore could not also take care of her father.
But then in July, the agency pulled out, saying it was concerned about the safety of its aides. Walker, 54, was able to find another agency but that same month, Thomas Rowe, 82, was hospitalized again with seizures. His anti-psychotic medications - which can cause seizures - were reduced. The result was much less aggression and no more seizures, Walker said. She has since decided to try more herbal remedies.
At the end of September, after seven months out of work, Dorla took a job - working more hours for less pay - at a health care financial institution.
Because the health care agency will not send an aide to cover the extra hours Walker works in the morning and evening, she is paying $15 to $20 an hour out of pocket for a private aide.
The lack of sleep and trying to learn a new job has taken a toll on Walker and she is worried about her health. "I really have to get some rest or get a break and keep myself healthy, so I can take care of him," she says.