AOASCC News & Notes
Make a Difference in a Child's Life

Do you love reading & enjoy being with children? Find out about volunteering as an Experience Corps tutor at a local informational session .

EC volunteers tutor students in Kindergarten through grade 3 who are struggling to learn to read. Each volunteer tutors in one participating school or after-school program 2 days a week (average of 5-6 hours) during the school year.
Caring for Caregivers

We recently saw two of our staff graduate as trainers for the Powerful Tools for Caregivers (PTC) workshop series. Tom Davis and Patricia Soos have joined Jan Simmons as workshop leaders, expanding our capacity to provide this valuable class. Find out more about PTC.

Patricia Soos knows the value of this program first hand. She was a caregiver for her mother, who had Alzheimer’s, for five years. She made the hard decision to leave a career she loved to care for her mother. This is a choice that she does not regret, although being her mother’s caregiver was the most difficult thing she has ever done. However, Patricia wishes she had known about the resources available to caregivers then. She now knows that caregivers do not have to be alone.

After her mother’s death, Patricia’s career focus changed. She knew she wanted to use her experience for others. She was hired in the Aging and Disability Resource Center to work in the respite programs. “I could immediately relate to what the families were going through. It’s different when you’ve been there.”

She is excited about becoming a trainer for PTC and working with Tom Davis. “He is a wonderful person to work with.” She especially values the experience he brings from being a trainer for the Live Well classes. She is expecting that they will make an “amazing team.”

When asked about the benefits of the Powerful Tools for Caregivers workshop, Patricia explained that it gives caregivers the ability to step outside their situation and take a look from the “outside in.” The program equips caregivers with tools, helps them create goals and, most importantly, helps them learn to be more effective communicators with their loved one and others. She adds, being a six-week program, caregivers really get the support they need and usually walk away with lasting connections with other caregivers. It is vital, she says, that caregivers know that they are not alone. Being part of that process with them, she says, “makes me proud.”

Would you like to know when the next workshop is scheduled? Click here.
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Caregiver Corner

When someone is essentially housebound due to illness or advanced age, it can be very difficult to think of useful gifts when birthdays and holidays roll around. Here are some ideas for gifts that other caregivers have found helpful when family & friends want to give a gift. They are much more welcome than another vase, picture frame or jewelry box!

Items that are warm, and soothing can usually be used to make the person you care for more comfortable; older people and people who are sick frequently feel the cold more easily. Gifts of soft, comfy, easy to put on, clothing can keep the care recipient warm and make dressing easier for the caregiver. Socks and well-fitting, rubber soled slippers can help prevent falls. A warm blanket or shawl can feel like a loving hug, especially when it’s handcrafted by you. Many chronic health conditions are associated with dry skin: diabetes, circulatory diseases, hypothyroidism, poor nutrition, and psoriasis. These are common conditions in older adults. Creams and moisturizers can help manage the discomfort caused by these conditions.

Gifts that provide entertainment can make caregiving easier. When people are entertained, they’re less likely to feel irritable and they complain less. Finding new things to keep someone entertained is a challenge. Consider things like electronic gadgets such as tablets which can have word games and books. The ability to enlarge the viewing screen makes reading easy for people with reduced vision Subscribe to entertainment services like NetFlix that can provide unlimited options for TV programs, movies ,concerts, and sporting events. Adult coloring books are fashionable and many people are enjoying them, in addition to traditional jigsaw puzzles and board games.

Gift cards offer the caregiver and the care recipient the option of deciding what they might like to select as a gift, however, very often using the gift card creates another task for the caregiver who may already have more tasks to handle than are manageable. Providing help around the home can be a wonderful gift. Whether you hire a service to mow the lawn or shovel the snow, or you make a commitment to do it yourself, being relieved of a chore is a gift to the caregiver.

Spending time with a caregiver so they don’t feel they’ve been abandoned or relieving a caregiver of their caregiving tasks for a little while so they can just relax may be the best gift of all.
 TEARS Elder Abuse Conference 2019
The Intersection Between Mental Health and Aging









Save the Date

Tuesday, October 8, 2019
8:15 a.m. - 4:00 pm
Toyota Oakdale Theater, Wallingford

Keynote Speakers
Harry E. Morgan, M.D. , President
The Center for Geriatric and Family Psychiatry, Inc.

Czepiga Daly Pope & Perri
Partner with Us
 Sponsorship, exhibitor tables and resource guide ads are available.

Your Organization Benefits
•You will have direct contact with over 600 professionals attending this conference.
•These professionals have direct contact with thousands of consumers each year. 
 
Older Adults Benefit
·   Your support allows us to provide this conference, including continuing education credits, for free - invaluable training and support for aging industry professionals.  
 
Reserve your table by July 15th
& receive a $100 discount
CHOICES- Medicare Home Care Coverage

The Center for Medicare Advocacy won a landmark decision benefiting people on Medicare. A summary of the coverage determination for home care is listed below with permission from the Center for Medicare Advocacy.

Medicare home health coverage can be an important resource for people with long-term and chronic conditions who need care at home. Contrary to common belief, Medicare home health coverage is not just a short-term, acute care benefit. In fact, under the law, Medicare beneficiaries who meet the qualifying criteria are eligible for home health coverage so long as skilled care is reasonable and necessary. There are six threshold requirements for Medicare home health coverage:
  1. The beneficiary must be home-bound. This requirement means it is difficult, or contraindicated, for the individual to leave home alone, he/she does so infrequently, or for medical or certain other allowed purposes. The requirement does not mean that a beneficiary can never leave home, or that the beneficiary must be bed-bound;
  2. The beneficiary must require skilled nursing care on an intermittent basis, physical therapy, speech language pathology services, or, in some instance, occupational therapy;
  3. A physician, or a recognized non-physician health care professional, must have a face-to-face meeting with the beneficiary prior to certifying his/her need for home health care;
  4. A physician must order the care to be provided by the home health agency, and sign and certify a “Plan of Care;”
  5. A document about the face-to-face meeting, signed by a physician, must be included in the home health care certification; and
  6. The home health agency must be a Medicare-certified provider.
Unfortunately, home health agencies and Medicare Contractors, which make Medicare claim determinations, continue to deny Medicare home health coverage, and/or access to care, even for patients who meet these coverage criteria. Too often, beneficiaries are told Medicare will not cover skilled nursing or therapy services because they have “plateaued,” or are “chronic,” or “stable,” or lack potential for improvement. These denials, based on an erroneous “Improvement Standard,” without an inquiry into whether skilled care may be required to maintain or prevent deterioration of a patient’s condition, violate the Jimmo Settlement.
Did You Know?

Estimates are that the cost of disease-associated malnutrition in older adults is  $51.3 billion per year , and up to  one out of every two older adults  are at risk of becoming malnourished.

Health concerns, restricted diets, limited income, limited access to healthy food, reduced social contact, depression and alcoholism are all cited as factors increasing the risk of malnutrition.

Malnutrition in older adults often goes unrecognized but can lead to various health concerns, including:
  • A weak immune system, which increases the risk of infections
  • Poor wound healing
  • Muscle weakness and decreased bone mass, which can lead to falls and fractures
  • A higher risk of hospitalization
  • An increased risk of death

Read more from the Mayo Clinic.
Help with Groceries

Mr. and Ms. Sam, 78 and 69, were at the end of their rope trying to find ways to meet their day-to-day expenses. Their biggest fear was that they would not be able to see their doctor because of overdue medical bills. They were approved to receive SNAP, helping them focus on their health

There are many good reasons to  #getSNAP . Apply today at  BenefitsCheckUp.org/getSNAP
or for more information, visit our website.
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