AOASCC News & Notes


March 2018

May is  Older Americans Month - Celebrate with us!
We are looking forward to our annual art exhibition  to be held May 17th-June 21st.
Are you a painter or photographer?    Sign up today!
There is no entry fee and prizes will be awarded.
VolunteerSpotlight on Volunteering 
In January the RSVP and Experience Corps programs held an Appreciation Luncheon . It was wonderful to witness perfect strangers who have so much in common - the willingness to give to others!   There were volunteers from every aspect of service; from Friendly Visitors and Money Managers to  tutors, knitters and pen pals.
Meet one of our newest volunteers. Fred celebrated his 101st birthday in January. He is a member of the Veteran Pen Pal Project, corresponding on a regular basis with a middle school student, and he is also is a recipient of the Friendly Visitor Program. Fred's volunteer, Dick, is also a veteran so they have a lot in common. Dick is going beyond "friendly visiting" to help Fred get his Purple Heart, as he still has shrapnel in his body from his time in WWII.       read more
Bravo to all of the wonderful volunteers of the agency's RSVP Program. Every single one of them makes a commitment of time and energy to a pure stranger. And those strangers, unknowingly, make an impact on the volunteer.     Find out more!

RSVP is funded through the Corporation of National and Community Service. 
People often ask "How will I know when it's time to place my loved one in a nursing home?" There isn't one simple answer. The decision to place someone in institutional care is a process and one that most people try to avoid. Despite our best intentions and hard work however, sometimes placement is the best option.

How do you know when it's time? Here are some guideposts.
  • Caregiver "compassion fatigue" is one of the main reasons a family eventually places an elderly loved one in a 24-hour-aday nursing facility. You can recognize compassion fatigue in yourself by looking for the following signs: feeling emotionally drained or chronically tired; sleeplessness; chronic back pain; depression; constant sense of dread and gloom.
  • Sometimes the reasons for placement lie in the needs of the care recipient. Some people require specialized treatment that cannot be provided safely in the home setting. Frequent falls indicate the home setting may no longer be a safe environment. Progression of dementia with behavioral problems such as frequent angry outbursts or even violence against the caregiver may result in placement. Wandering away from home may create an unsafe home environment. New or increasingly severe illness may result in placement.
  • Sometimes placement happens because the other responsibilities of the caregiver need to take precedence. The caregiver may develop health conditions which make it impossible to continue to provide care. Care at home may become financially unfeasible. The caregiver may not be aware of all possible options for help at home.
  • The single most common reason people sight for making the decision to place a loved one is incontinence. Managing bladder and bowel problems for caregivers who work outside the home and manage other family responsibilities is the final straw for many caregivers.
Information is important when facing the decision to place a loved one. Make certain you have explored all the possible homecare resources.   Learn what you can about managing incontinence. Look into wander prevention solutions. Check your home for simple safety solutions to decrease injury risks. There are many things you can do to extend the length of time you can care for your loved one at home, but recognize that sometimes it's wisest to seek other solutions. It doesn't mean you're no longer a caregiver, it simply means that you've relocated the responsibility to a new setting.
One of the least utilized Medicare benefit is hospice care. Original Medicare and Medicare Advantage plans provide hospice benefits to beneficiaries. Hospice is a program of care and support generally provided at home, for people who are terminally ill. The plan of care the hospice team creates can include any or all of these services:
  • Doctor services
  • Nursing care
  • Medical equipment (like wheelchairs or walkers)
  • Medical supplies (like bandages and catheters)
  • Prescription drugs
  • Hospice aide and homemaker
A specially trained team of professionals and caregivers provide care for the "whole person," including physical, emotional, social, and spiritual needs. Hospice staff coordinate with your primary care provider. Hospice staff are available 24/7.

Once your hospice benefit starts, Original Medicare will cover everything you need related to your terminal illness. Original Medicare will also pay for covered services for any health problems that aren't part of your terminal illness and related conditions. If your health improves or your illness goes into remission, you may no longer need hospice care.

For individuals with terminal illnesses who have reached a point in treatment where finding a cure is no longer an option, Hospice can provide extended, compassionate in-home care that can enable individuals to complete their lives at home with the support they need.
KnowDid You Know?  

What does end-of-life look like in the US? Consider these statistics compiled by Frontline
  • 7 out of 10 Americans die from chronic disease.
  • More than 80 percent of patients with chronic diseases say they want to avoid hospitalization and intensive care when they are dying.
  • 7 out of 10 Americans say they would prefer to die at home.
  • Only 25 percent of Americans actually die at home.
  • Nearly half of all Americans die in a hospital.
  • Nearly 70 percent of Americans die in a hospital, nursing home or long-term-care facility.
  • Only 20 to 30 percent of Americans report having an advance directive such as a living will.
  • Even when patients have an advance directive, physicians are often unaware of their patients' preferences. One large-scale study found that only 25 percent of physicians knew that their patients had advance directives on file.
calendarUpcoming Opportunity

Person Centered Counseling (PCC) Training 
Do you provide assistance to individuals or caregivers who are exploring options for long term care?  Get the tools you need through this 20 hour online & in-person training series.  The State of Connecticut, through a federal grant, is providing this training at no cost. Find out more.

help5.2 Million Seniors
are eligible for SNAP but are not enrolled.  Find out if you or someone you care about is one of the individuals missing out on this important benefit that helps put groceries on the table. 

Learn more at:  or  visit  our website .
HelpNeed help finding support at home? Care Network Link is a wonderful resource to find trusted providers: Homemaking, Personal Care Assistance, Live-In Caregivers, Wheelchair Ramps, Fall Alert Systems, Hair Stylists that come to your home.  

Give us a call at 203-495-1655 or sign up for membership at  Membership is FREE and will earn you discounts from the providers you hire.  Care Network Link credentials all the providers before allowing them on the network to make sure they are trustworthy businesses to have in your home.