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Friday, Apr. 29, 2016

Elderly Remain at Home

Thursday, October 18, 2012

There are 11 professionals on staff at Careage Home Care in Cherokee who are ready to serve the elderly in their homes. Among them are, left to right, Mary Crow, LPN, Karen Rupp, RN MS, Executive Director, and Daletta Patterson, RN. Photo by Nancy Nelson
Careage Hills Home Care helps elderly live at home

As adults age, it sometimes becomes more difficult for them to take care of themselves and their home. Almost all don't want to sacrifice the privacy and comfort of their home for a nursing home or assisted living. The alternative then would be to have someone come to their home to help them. Careage Home Care is an agency that provides a wide variety of services to help the elderly remain in their homes as long as possible.

Careage Home Care was opened July 2007 by Careage Managemen,t and is currently owned by Ensign Services, who purchased the business in 2011. They currently employ 11 experienced professionals ranging from home health aides to registered nurses.

According to Mary Crow, an LPN at Careage Home Care for the last three years, their goal is to keep people in their own homes. Clients can get help with basic cleaning, running errands, and assistance with personal cares, among other services. Sometimes it is just a matter of having someone available to make the client feel safe while they shower or bathe other times it may be more involved.

The nursing side of Careage Home Care includes a wide variety of services such as coordinating with doctors to take vitals, blood draws, medication review and setup, and even wound care. They also work with therapy groups to help with physical and occupational therapy prior to being able to get to the therapy location, for example, after surgery.

Sometimes family members are providing an immense amount of care for an elderly person and they need a break. Careage Home Care staff can also provide respite services for this purpose this is helpful to both the client and the person providing the majority of the cares.

There are several funding resources that Careage Home Care has access to, such as Medicare, Medicaid, Waiver Insurances, Private Insurance, private pay and others. They are also not limited to assisting the elderly. They are able to assist many types of clients either physically handicapped, mentally handicapped, or mentally ill. With the assistance of a home care agency it is estimated that an elderly person can remain in their own home on an average of 10 years longer than without services. Crow guesses that the average age of elderly clients are in their 80's and the oldest one they have had remain in their home was 100 years old.

Some of the common signs that an elderly person may need assistance include, forgetting where things are placed, forgetting or mixing up their medications, forgetting to change clothing, frequent falls, and a general feeling of feeling unsafe. Crow says that usually a family member or doctor will call Careage Home Care to make arrangements for their family member or patients. Otherwise word of mouth to friends of current clients often gets them in the door too.

Sometimes it is difficult for an independent elderly person to accept the fact they need or even want assistance. Many times the visits begin with a nurse which makes the potential client feel more at ease. Eventually they become more comfortable, gradually allow someone to come in and help them out around the house. Pretty soon they look forward to the visits from the staff who are there to help them.

"Clients who live in apartment complexes tend to be more social than those in private homes." Crow said. For some clients, their visits from Careage Home Care staff is their only source of social interaction. That is where the real parts of the job come in. All staff members from Careage Home Care find their jobs very rewarding. The clients and family are very appreciative of the services they provide. The clients and staff tend to become each others extended family. Crow said it is definitely not about the pay, it is simply very rewarding work.

As a community there are ways to help the elderly remain active and in their homes as much as possible. Some examples would be to provide some free entertainment and then offer rides to those kinds of events. Offer a home - bound person a ride to church or other activities. Simply visit and offer some companionship for a short time. Check in on a home - bound person to see if you can help with some yard work, winterizing, or spring cleaning. Do those things out of the kindness of your heart not for payment. The reward is the satisfaction of knowing you did a good deed for someone else.

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