ElderCarelink Blog

Live alone longer? Seniors connect via the Internet

by Judy Kirkwood
January 13th, 2012 at 1:44 pm

By the time we got my mother a laptop computer, she was too cognitively impaired to work the keyboard as she had when she was an ace executive secretary. It might have made a world of difference had we gotten her connected with the Internet earlier.

In a collaborative effort to enrich the lives of shut-ins, Microsoft, Selfhelp Community Services, New York’s Department of Aging, and Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications combined forces to promote Internet use by seniors in an innovative but simple project: The Virtual Senior Center. Although this was a funded project that benefited a limited number of people, it is conceivable that results could be replicated across the country.

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GPS shoes could limit Alzheimer’s wandering

by Judy Kirkwood
January 9th, 2012 at 3:54 pm

Remember the nightmare panic of losing your toddler in a crowded store? The same thing goes for taking an Alzheimer’s patient on a shopping excursion, as well as taking care of your family member or caregiving charge while traveling, or even at night or when you might doze off or take a nap thinking that they are napping as well.

Kimberly R. Kelly, a former sheriff and creator of the DVD for law enforcement agencies Plain Talk About Alzheimer’s Disease: Alzheimer’s Related Dementia and Wandering cites research that 60 percent or more of Alzheimer’s patients will wander away from home at some point: finding them quickly is critical. Once disoriented, they may not respond to their name because they don’t remember it, and may even try to hide if they become paranoid.

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Nursing homes going the way of the dinosaurs?

by Judy Kirkwood
January 3rd, 2012 at 11:19 am

What if after you researched and visited and agonized and finally placed your family member in a nursing home you realized someone was encouraging them to leave the nursing home? How frustrating is that?

Hello Medicare.

Regulations adopted by Medicare in October 2010 mandated that a patient or guardian be asked if they wanted to go back in the community every three months. But now the question has been reworded to more specifically suggest moving out, according to Paula Span in The New Old Age column that runs in The New York Times.

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Elder mobility: traveling with a wheelchair

by Judy Kirkwood
December 2nd, 2011 at 1:15 pm

My daughter-in-law’s 86-year-old father, Jim, traveled from the Midwest to South Florida with my son’s family for a visit with me last month. She rented a wheelchair from the local hospital as her diabetic father had some trouble walking. My son was flying separately with Jim and everything went smoothly until their layover in Atlanta.

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Is it time to take over an elder’s finances?

by Judy Kirkwood
November 28th, 2011 at 10:05 am

My neighbor, a single mother with an active 5-year-old and a stressful job, is trying to help her 70-something mother with her financial problems. But there is no financial solution. Her mother is obviously unable to handle her financial affairs.

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