Arrowhead Economic Opportunity Agency’s Senior Care Consultation Service is provided in partnership with municipalities providing financial and other support to ensure the elders of their communities can remain at home as they age. These communities are Aurora, Biwabik, Eveleth, Gilbert, Hoyt Lakes, Mt. Iron, and Virginia.
Since spring of 2018, over 63 households have been served, 48 needing minor home aids/repairs and 15 needing home modifications to remain independent. The project targets homebound individuals at risk of nursing home placement age 60+ that are: receiving home-delivered meal service; at high nutrition risk; have 2 or more ADL limitations; and/or are receiving care from a family member who is overwhelmed due to their caregiving role. The Senior Care Consultation Service begins with an in-person visit to a senior’s home by the Care Consultant conducting reassessment for home delivered meal service. The process screens nutrition risk, Activities of Daily Living (ADLs), and Independent Activities of Daily Living (IADLs). The staff also provides the Live Well at Home Rapid Screen and a Home Safety Checklist.
The Home Safety Check identifies safety and health issues that may need addressed immediately such as fall hazards and accessibility issues. The assessment is initially performed by the Care Consultant who takes pictures of the identified situations, followed by AEOA’s Housing Department construction staff that develop a scope of work. From that scope, the senior can choose how to have the issue(s) resolved or not.
Repairs may easily be performed by family members or volunteers, while others need additional assistance from AEOA’s Housing Department to complete the work. Where appropriate, seniors are connected to community funds or provided a sliding scale fee service. For seniors unable to afford the repairs, AEOA has secured funding from municipalities to provide financial assistance. AEOA is also able to connect seniors to our single-family rehab programming and funding.
In its first year of operation, the Senior Care Consultation Service has been very successful. In years two and three AEOA intends to build further partnerships with municipalities and others in our communities seeking to help our elders remain independent in the communities they love.
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