Posts Tagged ‘boomers’

Ride-Sharing for Seniors May Help with Senior Transportation Crisis

Wednesday, December 6th, 2017

Seniors face a crisis in transportation. Older individuals may have physical or mental impairments that make driving difficult, and public transportation may be unavailable or too difficult to navigate. Subsidized para-transit is available in many communities, but the process of scheduling a ride can be complicated. A lack of transportation can be a serious health hazard, as it can cause seniors to miss medical appointments and prevent them from engaging with a social support network, which helps maintain mental health.

Today there are new transportation options such as the ride-hailing services Uber and Lyft, which can be faster and less expensive than taxis. These options have been embraced quickly by much of the population, but seniors may be less familiar with them. A smartphone is essential to using the new services, and older individuals may not have smartphones or may not be as comfortable using them. Among Americans over the age of 65, only 42 percent own a smartphone, while 77 percent of the general population owns one. In addition, someone with a physical disability may require a vehicle that can accommodate an assistive device such as a walker or wheelchair, and the new services may not be set up to handle such requests.

Companies and governments recognize that there is a gap in transportation services for seniors, and they are making improvements. Lyft built a new platform called Concierge that allows operators to request rides for others. On the Jitterbug phone marketed to older people, users can press zero to have an operator order a Lyft. A startup called GoGoGrandparent offers a hotline that seniors can call to hail a ride. Uber launched an UberAssist option for riders who need help getting in and out of vehicles. Washington, D.C. launched a service called Abilities-Ride, which subsidizes taxi rides for people with disabilities. The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority in Boston subsidizes Uber and Lyft rides for people who do not need the full services of para-transit. The AARP Foundation has begun a pilot program with Lyft and other partners to give free rides to people who may be in danger of missing medical appointments. With the rapid development of technology and the large market that seniors represent, transportation options are likely to expand.


Learn more about elder lawestate planning and special needs planning at,  & Have questions about this article? Contact us.

Was this article of interest to you? If so, please LIKE our Facebook Page by clicking here.




Family History May Help Seniors

Thursday, March 3rd, 2016

Seniors and their loved ones can benefit from knowing the family’s health history.

Genetics plays a role in a wide range of diseases, and being aware of the ailments that previous generations suffered from can help inform the preventative steps that should be taken to safeguard seniors’ health, as well as the care they may need as they age. Family medical history should be provided to doctors, and adult children caring for elders will want to inform themselves as well, for the saLittman Krooks Elder Lawke of their loved ones and themselves.

Family medical history can give doctors guidance in determining the causes of symptoms a patient is experiencing, and warn them when certain treatments may have an increased risk of side effects. Family history also helps in a reverse way, by assisting doctors in ruling out possible reasons for a patient’s condition.

A family history of heart problems or problems with alcohol may prompt family members to eat better or restrict their drinking. Certain types of cancer in the family may mean that family members should get more than the usual checkups. Knowing about a family history of Alzheimer’s or other dementia can help families plan for the care that seniors may need.

Delving into your family’s medical history can sometimes be troubling, but doctors say that if there is a risk factor present, it is much better to be aware of it, so that preventative measures can be taken.

Learn more about our services by visiting or

Was this article of interest to you? If so, please LIKE our Facebook Page by clicking here.

Four Ways Primary Family Caregivers Can Manage Stress

Monday, August 25th, 2014

Home care




Our latest guest blogger is Lou Giampa, is the President of Right at Home Westchester. Lou is a New York State Certified Nurse Aide (CNA) who volunteers in hospitals and nursing homes throughout Westchester County.  He also volunteers with the Alzheimer’s Association, Meals on Wheels, and the Aging in Place community.


First, Dad needed help monitoring his daily medications, and then he needed to be taken to physical therapy twice a week. During the next few months, Dad’s health continued to wane and he wrestled with losing his independence.

If you are a primary family caregiver, you understand the tough sacrifices and rewards of helping your elderly loved one maintain their independence. You are alongside them for the activities of daily living such as bathing, dressing and eating. You step in when there are medical and financial decisions to be made. You break the doctor’s news, you give the chin-up talks, you listen to the reminiscences of days gone by, and you love and are there without question.

Yet, like millions of other chief family caregivers, your life is expanding in scope and responsibility. If you juggle care-giving with your own family’s needs and a career, you sense the intense squeeze of time and commitments all the more. With your loved one’s care continually on the front burner, your care needs stay on the back-burner. Without realizing it, your efforts to comfort and support your senior may be eroding your own health. Primary family caregivers are more susceptible to high blood pressure, stroke, diabetes and anxiety. Stress from caring for an aging loved one also can increase the likelihood of headaches, disruptive sleep and depression.

“Primary family caregivers deserve a supportive round of applause because they work so tirelessly to serve their senior loved one, often without a break or even a “thank you,” said Lou Giampa, President of Right at Home Westchester.  “Our professional at-home caregivers understand the need for family caregivers to reserve time for their own mental, physical and emotional health. I encourage family caregivers, especially the main caregiver, to take care of themselves regularly and not wait until they hit the frazzled and fatigued state.”

Your aging loved one needs you functioning at your best, so relieving stress is vital to everyone’s health to manage day-to-day and long-term priorities. Giampa recommends the following stress busters for principal family caregivers:

  • Refresh your own health. Exercise at the gym or go for a brisk walk a few times a week. Be sure you maintain good nutrition and sleep habits. Check in with your own doctor on annual exams and ways to support your own optimal health.
  • Recruit help. Enlist the support of family members, friends and neighbors who can lend caregiving help. Also, rely on regular respite breaks through the assistance of a professional in-home caregiver. From getting help for a few hours a day to regular overnight care, securing adult home healthcare is a sign of wisdom and strength, not a sign of weakness or inability to care well.
  • Stay connected. Keep up your own family connections and friendships. Having a confidant who listens to you is crucial as you navigate the unknowns and challenges of caring for another person. Local or online caregiver support groups are another beneficial way to learn with others about realistic expectations and goals to prevent caregiver burnout.
  • Continue with your own life. To maintain balance, it’s important to stay active with your own interests, hobbies and social groups. Don’t skip the fun events or forgo your normal faith and community activities.

When primary family caregivers learn to relieve stress regularly – before health issues arise – they help safeguard their loved one’s care and preserve the relationship with their loved one – one shared meal, one doctor’s report and one fond memory at a time.

About Right at Home

Founded in 1995, Right at Home of provides in-home care and assistance to seniors and the disabled.  We help care for seniors who require some assistance in order to maintain their independence, improving their quality of life, and enabling them to remain in their homes.  Our caregivers help with all the activities of daily living, as well as cooking, light housekeeping, safety supervision, medication reminders, and transportation to medical appointments, grocery shopping, social activities, etc. Our caregivers are thoroughly screened, trained, and bonded/insured prior to entering a client’s home.


If you or someone you know could benefit from in-home care, please visit For more information, please contact our office at 914.468.1944


Was this article of interest to you? If so, please LIKE our Facebook Page by clicking here.


Nonprofit Groups Help Seniors Feed Their Pets

Friday, January 10th, 2014

Meals on Wheels now helps some seniors get donated food for their pets. For many seniors, a pet is a lifeline, providing companionship to ward off loneliness and depression, and promoting physical and mental activity. And of course, people love their pets, so much so that nonprofit groups that help seniors in need found that some seniors were giving donated food meant for them to their pets. The groups have responded by arranging for pet food to be included with deliveries

The arrangement comes from a partnership between organizations that help low-income seniors and pet groups around the country. Meals on Wheels is one of the organizations involved, and they have cooperated with a number of independent pet groups in several different states.The pet groups ask volunteers to collect donated pet food and bring it to Meals on Wheels or another agency that delivers food. The pet food is delivered along with regular deliveries to seniors who need it. The groups also deliver to community centers, nursing homes and senior centers. The organizations said that seniors who are eligible for Meals on Wheels or similar programs usually qualify for the free pet food deliveries as well.

The groups said that pets are extremely important for seniors, and that it is not unusual for low-income seniors or people with disabilities to feed their pets before themselves, sacrificing their own health.

One of the organizations, LifeCare Alliance, began a pet food delivery program five years ago in Columbus, Ohio and now brings donated food to over 1,000 animals per month. The group started the program after learning that many of the people they served were extremely isolated, with 70 percent reporting that they did not see anyone other than a Meals on Wheels driver each week.

Another pet food delivery program, AniMeals, began in 1984 in San Diego, among the first in the nation. The group delivers food to 250 pets each month, relying on 40 volunteers to collect 3,200 cans of wet food and about 3,000 pounds of dry food each month. The group has bins in pet stores for customers to donate food for the program.


New Program Enlists Doormen to Watch for Elder Abuse

Friday, December 13th, 2013

A new program in New York City is training doormen who work in apartment buildings to watch for elder abuse.

The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Center for Elder Abuse Prevention, part of the Hebrew Home at Riverdale, developed the program, which offers free training for doormen, porters, concierges and other building staff, at the building where they work.

Joy Solomon, the director of the Weinberg Center, said that many elderly people who were being abused did not come forward on their own, so advocates realized they would have to reach out to others who might be likely to spot the signs of abuse. The center has already helped to educate people such as estate lawyers, speech therapists, and those who deliver hot meals to seniors. Now building staff are being enlisted to help as well.

Many buildings in the city have a growing population of elderly residents. An analysis of census data by Queens College found that by 2040, an estimated 21 percent of adults in New York City will be age 60 or older, an increase from 17 percent in 2010.

At a training she led recently, Ms. Solomon told of an elderly resident of an Upper East Side apartment building, who was taken advantage of by a woman. Building staff witnessed the woman removing valuables from the man’s apartment, but did not step forward, perhaps because they did not want to overstep their bounds. Solomon said that when a staff member knows that something is wrong, it is important to take action. Several older apartment building residents said they would much prefer that building staff say something about a situation that does not appear right, rather than staying quiet out of a fear of prying into someone else’s business.

For elderly residents who do not have frequent visits from friends and family, a doorman may be the first person to notice an injury, signs of confusion, or other evidence that the person needs help.

Solomon said that the training would be provided initially to buildings with large populations of older people, but would eventually be available to anyone requesting it.


Traveling Tips for Families with a Loved One with Alzheimer’s

Monday, September 9th, 2013

If you have a loved one with Alzheimer’s or other dementia, you may be apprehensive about bringing your family member with you when traveling. However, with a little bit of careful planning, you and your loved one can enjoy a safe trip.

Before deciding on travel details, consider what would be best for the safety and comfort of your loved one with Alzheimer’s. People in the early stages of the disease often enjoy travel, but for some the experience is overwhelming. Keep your family member’s preferences and limitations in mind when choosing your transportation method. The best journey is one that does not unduly disrupt your loved one’s daily routine. A person with dementia is likely to prefer a destination that is familiar or that involves visiting loved ones.

Navigating airport security can be difficult for someone with dementia; if you must travel by air, consider informing the airline of your needs ahead of time. Even if a wheelchair is not necessary, it may be a good idea for your family member’s comfort and because you will have an airline employee to help you get around the airport.

During the trip, be aware of the fact that a change in environment can be a trigger for wandering, and take precautions. Also be sure to keep essentials on hand such as a comfortable change of clothes, all prescribed medications, snacks and drinking water. You should also bring important documents such as copies of any living will or advanced health care directives, health insurance cards, and doctors’ names and contact information.

For more information about our elder law services, visit


Study Finds High Disability Rates for Elderly

Tuesday, August 27th, 2013

Researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, have released a study recently published in JAMA Internal Medicine, after looking at more than 15 years of data. They examined the national Health and Retirement Study in order to discern how many elderly people are disabled in their last few years of life. The study looked at more than 8,000 adults over the age of 50 who died between the years 1995 and 2010, and how mobile they were, as well as any disabilities they had in their last years of life.

Gerontologists and other elder care professionals have been working on the “compression of morbidity:” keeping seniors healthy and active as long as possible so that there is little-to-no loss in quality of life until just before death. But despite their best efforts, the researchers believe that instead, people are living longer while also disabled. Though later-life disability can be slowed down, it cannot, it seems, be prevented entirely. According to the lead author, Dr. Alex Smith, most people who live to an older age, especially women, do so with a mobility issue or other disability for the last few years of life.

The study found that for the last two years before death, 28 percent of individuals were disabled in an area of “activities of daily living,” meaning they could not bathe, dress or toilet themselves without assistance. Twelve percent of that group was severely disabled; they needed assistance with all three of the activities of daily living, and other assistance, as well. The rate of disability rose sharply with the age ranges; of the group which died by age 69, only 15 percent were disabled in the two years prior to their deaths. Of the group which died after age 90, at least 50 percent were disabled within two years prior to their deaths.

Mobility issues occurred in most people in the study; 69 percent of the older group had reported that they could not walk more than several blocks, while 50 percent reported that they had trouble using stairs. Women overwhelming were more disabled in their later years compared to men the same age, possibly due to depression, osteoporosis and arthritis, all of which occur more commonly in elderly women than in elderly men. The study did not include the incidences of cognitive decline.

The study indicates that the U.S. needs better elder care facilities, comprehensive medical elder care and extensive support structures in place as the nation’s elderly population continues to grow.

How to Find a Senior Caregiver for an Adult with Alzheimer’s or Dementia

Monday, August 5th, 2013
Our guest blogger this week is Ken Myers, President of Morningside Nannies. – See more at:

Our guest blogger this week is Ken Myers, President of Morningside Nannies

As adults, we tend to take for granted an abundance of competency related normalcies that will one day begin to deteriorate, but there are many revelations that come with aging. One may wonder how our family members will find the proper person to take care of us when we are unable do so ourselves. How do our family members find the right person to take care of us when we are unable to do it for ourselves? The following is a list of considerations that need to be taken.

1. Experience – Though a person may have a substantiated educational background pertaining to the care of a senior with Alzheimer’s, someone with hands on experience may be better suited to provide for a person confronted with the ever-changing needs of their particular situation. You do not want to disregard education in total, but perhaps someone with more real time experience is better suited for the person that needs care.

2. Education – The positive value of a good education cannot be disregarded when considering a candidate.  A young person with a degree that is certified to care for seniors with disabilities may be adequate for your situation if it is not very complex. It will also provide that capable person with priceless hands on experience, enabling them to know what to expect going forward. At the very least the person will be prepared for the basic treatment of Alzheimer’s and/or Dementia and will likely be knowledgeable about CPR and First Aid. The latter is not guaranteed, so please ask.

3. Background Check – It is always smart to perform a background check on your caregiver and it should be a common practice. This will validate their credentials and prove useful in preventing an unfavorable situation when hiring live-in help. The downside to not preforming a background check is bottomless. This should always be done when considering care for a senior.

4. Trial Run – Impose a period of trial employment to gauge how well the candidate and the senior interact with each other day to day. Many adults will resist giving up control when it comes to personal care; it is natural to want to be independent. Grading how well a candidate performs under the pressures of resistance and aggression by the senior will help to determine if they are a fit for the job.

5. Caregiver Agency – There are many agencies that offer caregivers at varying levels of skill and education. These agencies have already prescreened, tested, and deployed these professionals to care for seniors in the past. Though these agencies tend to be more expensive, you can rest assured knowing that this candidate performs their job well and is proven.

It takes a great amount of patience and understanding to deal with someone with Alzheimer’s disease or Dementia. The person will need to be able to adapt at the drop of a hat and be able to care for us. You wouldn’t want to put someone who isn’t ready in that predicament, and many of us would rather not put our own family members through the frustration and anguish that comes with day-to-day care.


Author Bio:

Ken holds a master’s in business leadership from Upper Iowa University and multiple bachelor degrees from Grand View College.  As president of, Ken’s focus is helping Houston-based parents find the right childcare provider for their family. When he isn’t working, he enjoys spending time with his three children and his wife.


For more information about legal services for seniors, visit

Making the Home Safer for the Senior Resident

Thursday, July 25th, 2013

Many older people require the assistance with daily needs and safe environment that are found in an assisted living facility. Others prefer to age in place, bringing health care assistants into the home. In these cases, changes may also be needed to make the home safer for the senior resident.

Seniors may have trouble moving about or be at risk for falling. Improvements can be made to the home to make life easier, but older people or their adult children may not be aware of what changes can or should be made. An occupational therapist can be of great service, with some specializing in performing an analysis of the home environment and producing a detailed improvement plan that a contractor can follow.
There are some simple and inexpensive changes that can be made, such as installing brighter light bulbs and removing rugs that may cause slipping. More extensive safety features that may need to be installed can include grab-bars for walking assistance or an electric stair lift to get from one level to another easily and safely. Seniors may also need for the height of chairs to be increased slightly to make them easier to get in and out of.

When it comes to paying for such improvements, long-term care insurance can help. If you have such a policy, and it covers home improvements, then hiring an occupational therapist can help in demonstrating that the changes are necessary for the resident’s health. A reverse mortgage or home equity loan can also help pay for safety improvements, but consult with a financial adviser before taking out such financing.


For more information about our legal services for seniors, visit

Sequester Cuts Will Harm Seniors, Veterans

Monday, April 1st, 2013

As Congress failed to take action, the cuts required by the Budget Control Act, commonly referred to as the sequester, began taking effect on March 1.  Spending cuts of $85 billion are being imposed across federal programs, both military and domestic.  While many of the core programs that seniors and veterans rely on are exempt from the cuts, other programs will be affected, some of which protect the most vulnerable.

First, the good news: funding for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare is exempt from the cuts.  However, while those benefits will not change, the federal workforce that administers them will be reduced, causing delays and limits to access.

In the case of Medicare, for instance, there will be no change in benefits, but doctors and other Medicare providers will see a two percent reduction in their payments.  This could lead some doctors to drop Medicare patients, resulting in longer waits for doctors who do accept Medicare.

While Social Security benefits will not change, services provided by the Social Security Administration may be cut back, including closing some offices.  The large backlog of disability claims will likely grow even larger.

While these core programs are spared the full force of the cuts, other needed programs will be drastically affected.  Meals on Wheels and other senior nutrition programs will see cuts resulting in 18.6 million fewer meals being served to needy people, according to the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging.  The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program will discontinue help to approximately 400,000 households, often low-income seniors that rely on the assistance to heat and cool their homes.

The Area Agencies on Aging reports that other important services to seniors will also be cut, including in-home help with bathing and dressing and transportation to medical appointments or to buy groceries.  Seniors are put at risk by these cuts, and any savings to the federal government are offset by the cost to society of the inevitable increase in health care needs when seniors are not able to get help with daily living.

While there will be no change in VA benefits, some veterans will still be affected by the cuts.  Some homeless veterans will no longer be able to receive assistance from a housing program run by the Department of Housing and Urban Development that provides grants to the states to help people find housing.

In addition, because of the sequester, some job-training programs for veterans will no longer receive funding from the Labor Department, affecting tens of thousands of vets.

Active duty personnel will also be affected by the suspension of the Tuition Assistance Program, which helps service members with the cost of courses toward high school and college diplomas.  The program provided hundreds of thousands of active duty military personnel with up to $4,500 per year for tuition at accredited schools.

These arbitrary spending cuts are more onerous because they were never supposed to happen and are the result not of careful lawmaking but of Washington gridlock.

For more information, visit