Tag Archive for fort wayne

Elderly Care Resources: Does my Senior need Help with Food?

Elderly Care Resources: Does my Senior need Help with Food?

 

In our community we do a lot of volunteer work with seniors and the elderly, and those who cannot get to or make food for themselves any longer. This is often an over-looked issue, as many people think that Medicare and Social Security will still cover these costs. And while in some cases that is true, in many cases, those funds are tightly wound up in everyday bills, medication cost, and the generally high cost of everyday living. If you are in the Fort Wayne area and have a senior relative or friend, please be sure to check in with them and see that they are getting enough food to eat regularly.

If you find that your senior or elderly relative or friend is struggling with this issue, there are some things you can do to help. First, check in to the Homebound Meals program, or your local chapter for Meals on Wheels. In Fort Wayne, our “Meals on Wheels” is funded by sponsors and donations only, and receives no government funding. They rely solely on volunteers to help deliver the local pre-made and medically tailored meal plans to any senior in the area who needs it. The meals are made at local hospitals and picked up by the route drivers minutes after they are made. With each meal comes a hot-lunch, and a cold-lunch, covering all of the nutritional needs of the human. It’s a simple sign-up, too, and no one is turned away. These meals are delivered at lunch Monday through Friday.

Another place to turn to for pantry-filling assistance would be your local food bank. Our local food bank, Community Harvest, has a SeniorPak program that is funded by the government and donations. They track seniors by their Medicare insurance. They do have other senior and elderly food programs as well, some with delivery, and others for pickup from the food bank itself. SeniorPak routes happen once per month and each senior gets twenty-plus pounds of food delivered in two large paper bags. With this program, the seniors are asked to sign that they received their delivery. This helps the food bank track who gets what and when, and ensure they get the appropriate funding in return.

The most important thing to remember is to check in with your senior and elderly neighbors. Some are too ashamed to mention they might not have enough to eat, and others too proud being brought up to deal with whatever the situation is. In today’s world, hunger should not be a concern of any one. Working together we can all assure that all seniors and the elderly have all they need to eat!

Elderly Care Resources: Nursing Home Safety

New Haven 2012.

Elderly Care Resources: Nursing Home Safety

While there is no doubt in anyone’s mind that the nursing home business is one of the top businesses to need a complete overhaul, the recent issues within the system are far too great to ignore. In our own dealings with nursing homes, we often find the gamete of situations from the worst, to the best. The best are often unrecognized nurses and certified nursing assistants who do truly care for the job and treat your family members like their own. Those are few and far between. The worst situations often involve those nurses and CNAs on the opposite end of the spectrum, who are only there because schools pay them to be, or the job was easy to acquire because of the high demand.

Another aspect of the worst situations is the business and governmental side of things, which we have all seen all over the news reports with the recent hurricanes and weather events. Because the laws, rules and regulations that exist within these nursing home walls have not been updated, there is no flexibility for your family member’s situation or needs. Major issues, whether it be mental or physical needs, are often ignored because the paperwork to address those needs takes too long, and will most likely be denied by the institution or insurance companies anyway. In our own situation, if certain mental needs would have been met early on, would the outcome of Nancy’s demise have been different? Would having better laws and rules about DNR orders have saved Barb from a year of vegetable-like living she never wanted? Would having set emergency plans for evacuation and power loss have saved the elderly in the hurricanes?

In the past two weeks, there have been incidents in two different states in regards to the safety of their residents. One nursing home began to flood in Texas during hurricane Harvey, floating all of its residents into one room to wait for days in chest deep, cold, dirty water for rescue. After their rescue, the facility blamed the State, who blamed the Federal government; and then the issue disappeared. A week later after the impact of Irma, another nursing home facility lost power in the intense Florida heat, and eight residents died, with multiple others sickened. The Florida facility even had access to the hospital across the street that had generators running, power, and cool air.

What is the excuse? Why are these the first places to be forgotten? How are the places and companies responsible for our family patriarchs and matriarchs being held responsible for their quality of life?

These facilities are making thousands of dollars per month off of each resident. Medicaid residents make them less than those with private pay insurances, so this leaves no question that there should be plenty of funds to cover the basic human needs, including emergency plans. If those very people who depend on Medicaid have to follow rigorous rules to stay in the program and prove their incomes and every other life aspect, shouldn’t the very companies that benefit, support and supply them have some responsibility in their safety?

Of course nothing in the nursing home industry will be corrected, or rectified anytime soon. Especially in a government where no one agrees, or stays on the payroll for longer than a week. Something needs to be done for the elderly in our country. It should not be that these great people are forgotten after they hit retirement age. They all worked hard for our country just as I am, as we are, doing now. I do not want to think of 80 as my nursing home sentence where the world and my family forget about me. I want to know that my life will be celebrated, and the good I did in the world is continued through my family. And maybe, just maybe, we will see change in the nursing home industry in our lifetime!

VOLUNTEER! Because You Can!

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Elderly Care Resources brings you:

Volunteer! Because You Can!

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Over the past decade, we always seemed to find ourselves around the elderly and seniors. (And that’s where this web site came into play!) The fact is, we LOVE them immensely, and all of the things that they continue to teach us about life. It seems very full circle to have young children and the elderly working and interacting with each other on a regular basis brightens not only their world, but also gives children a clear view of real life, what’s expected, and what’s to come.

In our years of work and research, we always come back to a few very key points: seniors and the elderly lack the proper amounts of daily communication, interaction, and touch to properly function (Counsel of In-Home and Aging). It seems like something so simple to be able to rectify; a phone call here, a short visit there, or maybe lunch with them at their senior community. But what about those who are homebound and unable to leave, or provide for their basic necessities?

While doing a large food drive for our local food bank, Community Harvest in Fort Wayne Indiana, we learned more about the senior food programs and just how important they are to our community. In the past few weeks we have taken on a few delivery routes, taking non-perishable food items to seniors just like this. To see their faces light up when the open to door to smiling children is almost more than my heart can bear.

Consider signing up to help our local senior and elderly organizations WITH your children. Here are a few places you can do this around our area:

  1. Community Harvest Food Bank
  2. Aging & In-Home Service in NE IN
  3. Rescue Mission
  4. Charis House
  5. Franciscan Center, St. Anthony’s Food Pantry
  6. Check in with local nursing homes for NUMEROUS volunteer opportunities! Many love assistance with craft days, games, and strolling residents around the grounds on nice days for walks!

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