Staying Independent – More than just “Activities of Daily Living”

Posted December 26, 2006
When someone needs help with the basic activities of daily living (or ADL’s) its usually obvious that they should either be receiving help in the home, or moving to a community where they can receive the help they need.  ADL’s are bathing, ambulating, transferring, eating, grooming, dressing and toileting. But what about “instrumental” activities of daily living (or IADL’s)?  These are more complex activities associated with daily life that are essential to being independent.  For example: Using the telephone (looking up and dialing a number, and receiving calls) Preparing meals (planning, shopping for and preparing a meal) Managing money (writing ...
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60 is the new 40

Posted December 25, 2006
This is a picture of my grandmother and me, Christmas 1970.  She is 60 years old in this picture.  I don't know any 60 year old that has hair like that now! Second comment - who picked out that tree?  While I don't remember that tree at all, I do remember those green satin ornaments.  We had those and red ones until they fell apart.  Its actually so retro, I wish I had it now. I think I am holding a bottle of Estee Lauder Youth Dew - the irony is killing me.  Merry Christmas!
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What is an Ombudsman?

Posted December 23, 2006
A Swedish word meaning citizen’s representative, a Long Term Care Ombudsman is an advocate who seeks to resolve complaints on behalf of people who receive long term care services. Every resident of any long-term care facility in Illinois have rights.  Some of these rights are:  The right to refuse treatment.Freedom from chemical and physical restraints.Right to express grievances without fear of retaliation.Right to participate in the planning of your care and treatment. Anyone (current residents, relatives and friends of residents, employees of long term care facilities for example) can all contact their Ombudsman if they think someone’s rights are being ...
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Over the river and through the woods, to Grandmother’s House we go…

Posted December 22, 2006
Or actually onto I-90 and don’t stray for 500 miles.  Except that my Grandmother won’t be there.  But she will be there in spirit.  I used to love when I would get up and go to her house after we opened our gifts at home.  My grandmother (Nana) would give each of us a “weekend” which was just the best gift of all. The hard part was taking turns and deciding who went first. The weekend consisted of Nana taking us shopping at the mall, and usually to her favorite store, LL Berger’s.  I remember getting a ‘sweet’ velour long ...
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Christmas is coming..and I am getting hungry

Posted December 20, 2006
Saw this at one of the independent living/assisted living buildings I went to today.  So cool I had to whip out the high tech camera phone and capture it.  This gingerbread house was so big, I think I could live in it.  Their chef spent 2 weeks making it or so he told me.  If that wasn't impressive enough, I then ate some lunch he made.  De-lish.  And a presentation of food like I have never seen at a community yet.  So maybe I will move into the gingerbread house until I get to go home for Christmas...
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Why I am better than any Online Geriatric Assessment Tool

Posted December 19, 2006
Yesterday I went on a website that helps families sort out care for their loved ones.  Kind of like what I do but online.  So they had this really cool questionnaire and I filled it out with a specific client in mind.  She is pretty independent and we are helping her find a retirement community closer to her daughter.  She uses a cane occasionally, but other than that has no care needs.  She still drives and is sharp as a tack.  I know because I talked to her at length on the phone to try to learn as much about ...
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Free help to set up Mom, Pop

Posted December 17, 2006
That’s the title of the article in today’s CHICAGO TRIBUNE about my services.  There is nothing like your first piece of press and to have it in the CHICAGO TRIBUNE on a SUNDAY… well, needless to say I am pretty excited.  I actually bought the early edition yesterday since I couldn’t wait.  But I had to wait until the online version came out to share it with you in my blog. Here is the article, which I note is copyright 2006 by the Chicago Tribune and was written by Jane Adler, a Chicago-area freelance writer.  Her article, 55 PLUS, is ...
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What Care Needs Should Be Considered When Choosing Senior Housing?

Posted December 16, 2006
Usually when someone calls me looking for senior living I simply ask them what the situation is and let them talk. (and talk and talk if necessary!). Many times I can glean most of the information I need to determine what the current level of care will be and what they might be looking for in a senior living building. However, I don’t always get the WHOLE story so it is up to me to probe to make sure we make the right choice. Some of the other questions I might ask or you might ask yourself are: 1. Is ...
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Part 7: How much does senior living cost?

Posted December 15, 2006
Long-term care is very expensive.  It really is unfortunate that many families and seniors think that Medicare will pay for their stay in an assisted living facility.  Medicare is health insurance.  It doesn’t care where you live or really where you are receiving the care.  I went over the range of costs in the last few posts, and also discussed that option of Supportive Living should a senior have no assists and Medicaid is their only option. When I am trying to help a family find a solution I usually ask the following questions:What do they think their budget is?  ...
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Part 6: Supportive Living

Posted December 13, 2006
supportive living facilities (SLF) are a relatively new concept in senior care.  The first one in Illinois opened up in 1999 and in 2005 the state enacted to make SLF a permanent program. See, what was happening was that there were seniors living in nursing homes that did not require 24-hour care.  Maybe they needed it when they first got there, but then the got better, yet going home alone was not an option.   These residents were on Medicaid and the state figured out that it would cost less for them to live in an “assisted living” model than a ...
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