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Caregiving

Memories in the Making – Art Therapy & Alzheimers

Overview of Art Therapy Program developed by artist Maureen Simpson for Memory Care Residents of Encore Senior Village in Scottsdale, AZ. We created this video back in 2007 while working with the administrators of Encore to focus local attention on this groundbreaking program. It is very moving to see the profound effect this program had on the residents.

(Please note: Because HD video was not available at the time this video was filmed, it may appear slightly blurry when played in standard definition on your current monitor.)

Sensors Help Keep the Elderly Safe, and at Home

Increasingly, many older people who live alone are not truly alone. They are being watched by a flurry of new technologies designed to enable them to live independently and avoid expensive trips to the emergency room or nursing homes.

Bertha Branch, 78, discovered the power of a system called eNeighbor when she fell to the floor of her Philadelphia apartment late one night without her emergency alert pendant and could not phone for help.

A wireless sensor under Ms. Branch’s bed detected that she had gotten up. Motion detectors in her bedroom and bathroom registered that she had not left the area in her usual pattern and relayed that information to a central monitoring system, prompting a call to her telephone to ask if she was all right. When she did not answer, that incited more calls — to a neighbor, to the building manager and finally to 911, which dispatched firefighters to break through her door. She had been on the floor less than an hour when they arrived. (more…)

Technology: Helping Seniors Stay Home Longer

Technology: Helping Seniors Stay Home Longer As the baby boomer generation ages and the amount of healthcare workers to take care of them decreases, experts are looking for solutions. The fine folks over at Carnegie Mellon University have adopted the attitude “Well if we can’t find elderly care workers, we’ll build them!” And that’s exactly what their research team did. Introducing Flo: a personal robotic assistant for the elderly, or Nursebot. The project was tested in a Pittsburgh nursing home, where Flo would help guide people around and would remind them when it was time to eat or when it was appropriate to take their medications. The goal is to have Flo at home, providing assistance for people whose chronic disorders prevent them from living normal lives. (more…)

Hospice Chaplains Take Up Bedside Counseling

(Photo courtesy of Flickr and Tidewater Muse)

Being at the bedside of a dying person is a profound and often life-changing experience. It was for me. I got to know more about my dad and who he was as he was dying than in all of the previous years he was alive. Having had a traditional fear of dying, I was not prepared for the honesty and raw emotion that comes with helping a person die “well”. In the end, it was the hospice people that showed us incredible grace and compassion. I am forever grateful for their dedication to families like mine.

It was with great interest that I read the following article from today’s NY Times, about the new breed of non-denominational hospice chaplains. They are true heroes and deserves our deep admiration. I hope you enjoy the story: (more…)

A NEW PROGRAM TO HELP SENIORS, PART I

It’s been a while since I have blogged. I thought I would break myself back in slowly by sharing a video instead of writing. This program for seniors is needed. I hope you take the time to watch this video and learn about the PACE program.

After 55 Living Radio Episode 16 – Volunteering for Hospice

Learn about Hospice from Linda Vance, Director of Volunteer Services for Hospice of the Valley in Phoenix, Arizona. She talks about how hospice cares for the family unit, how to use Medicare to pay for hospice care and how hospice care is not only for the last 48 hours of life.

Volunteers are a vital part of the day-today operations of hospice. Find out about how volunteering for hospice can be a life changing experience.

Press PLAY to listen to this podcast:

 

Hospice Care – In The Hospital Or At Home?

  

This video shows the tough decisions a family must go through when end of life decisions need to be made. I believe the majority of us, if given the choice, would prefer to die in our own home. The family in the video has a family meeting and they discuss all the options for caring for their loved one. We brought in hospice for my parents as they wanted to be at home for their final moments. With my father-in-law, the decision was made for him to be in the hospice wing of a local hospital. From having seen both at-home hospice and hospice within the hospital, I would proceed differently (more…)

After 55 Living Radio – Making Family Caregiving Easier from NPR’s “Fresh Air”

Suzanne Geffen Mintz, president and co-founder of the National Family Caregivers Association, talks with NPR’s Fresh Air host Terry Gross on how to make caregiving easier. Mintz speaks from experience; her husband was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1974.

In the latest edition of her book, A Family Caregiver Speaks Up: “It Doesn’t Have to Be This Hard,” Mintz writes on ways caregivers can feel more confident through changes to their routine.

To listen now, click the DOWNLOAD button below:

After 55 Living Radio Episode 14 – Fall Prevention and Home Safety for Seniors

Falls and the complications following a fall are a leading cause of premature death in seniors. It is important to know which rooms and situations in your home pose the highest threat to senior safety. Inspecting your home for hazards is an important step in preventing falls from happening.

We spoke with Karen Martin of MedAssure located in Phoenix, Arizona about preventing falls, doing home safety checks and creating a safe environment for seniors at home.

To listen now, click the play button below:

 

After 55 Living Radio – Raising Children, Caring for Parents from NPR’s “New and Notes”

They are called the Sandwich Generation, 40- and 50-something women who are struggling to divide their time between raising kids and caring for their aging parents. Estimates on the number of women bearing this double burden run as high as 42 million. With families spread out over wider and wider geographic areas, the stress of caring for both children and parents can be overwhelming for working mothers, especially when the caregiving is being managed at a distance.

Hear the story of one SanGen mom, Dina Lipton, who is raising twin girls and fighting to save her career at the same time she is managing care for her dad, who has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. Even though she has brothers, the majority of the responsibilities such as managing her dad’s financial affairs, fighting for conservatorship and overseeing his medical care has fallen on her shoulders.

This is not unusual, according to Betsy Clark, the executive director of the National Association of Social Workers, who says that the image of woman as caregiver is a traditional one. Although this can vary across different ethnic and cultural groups, women will be the primary caregiver the majority of this time.

Host – Tony Cox of NPR’s “News and Notes”

Guests – Dina Lipton and Dr Betsy Clark, National Association of Social Workers

To listen now, click the DOWNLOAD button below: