July 8, 2013
In This Week's Issue
  • Recommended Chapter Structure
  • "Home Health Care Evolving"
  • Member Profile: Alissa Boroff, Access Solutions Director
  • Upcoming Events
Recommended Chapter Structure

As we reach out to build ongoing partnerships with senior housing developments and Villages, there are steps we can take to assure their administrators and residents of our bona fides.

At the first Annual Meeting of NAIPC in Washington DC on June 14, providing a template for the structure of each local chapter was discussed.  Recommendations included:
  • Creating a uniform chapter leadership structure with an Executive Committee consisting of a chair, vice chair, treasurer and secretary.  Chairs will serve two year terms and then be succeeded by the vice chair.
  • Encouraging each chapter to provide a minimum menu of services from their membership including:
  1. Adult Day Care
  2. Credit Counseling and/or Daily Money Management
  3. Elder Law
  4. Financial Advisor
  5. Geriatric Care Management
  6. Healthcare providers
  7. Home finance/reverse mortgage specialists
  8. Home modification/universal design specialists
  9. Senior housing management or service coordinators
  10. Social worker
  11. Local transportation
  • In addition, we recommend local reach-out by chapters to service every day providers who have not previously been a part of the Aging in Place discussion, but whom seniors need, including handymen, plumbers, gardeners, food delivery services, entertainment providers, etc.
  • It was agreed that all members who have not had background checks through other affiliations or certifications should go through such a check. NAIPC has set up a background check process with for $49.50 per member. We will provide more detailed information on this in future newsletters.
  • NAIPC encourages local chapters to advocate in their community and in their state for issues that improve the well-being of persons who choose to age in place.  Among the issues under discussion are:
  1. Advocating for each community and state to have an aging in place policy.
  2. Advocating for universal design requirements in all new housing.
  3. Advocate for adherence to the Affordable Care Act in states that are resisting.
  4. Advocate for community support of transportation services for aging persons.
The overall concept of unifying the structure of chapters and each of these other items will be discussed by the Council of Chapters during their next meeting scheduled for July 30 at 3 PM Eastern time.

In the interim, we look to you for comments on these proposals.

Home Health Care Evolving

By Brian K. Nadolne

No one wants to go to a hospital, much less stay there. We would rather stay at home, living independently. And if we can, we should.

That’s why health care professionals still make house calls. At this very moment, some of your neighbors are quietly receiving health care services at home. Every year, some 658 home health care organizations in Georgia send professional caregivers — nurses, therapists, social workers and others — to look after an estimated 92,700 patients.

Yet the value of health care at home — the lifeline it represents, especially for the elderly, the chronically ill and the homebound — remains little recognized, seldom appreciated and largely misunderstood.

As a result, vast needs are still going unmet. An estimated 12 million Americans currently receive health care at home, according to the National Association for Home Care & Hospice. Yet to the best of my knowledge, no organization tracks the untold millions of patients who are no doubt either going without health care at home or getting less than needed.

Consider the context. The aging of the American population is accelerating. And about three in four Americans age 65-plus have multiple chronic conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). More Americans, especially older ones, are living alone than at any time in history, too. Nearly a third of all U.S. households — 31 million — have just one resident.

One solution is health care delivered right to your doorstep. But first we have to take a few baby steps. The medical community, including physicians, medical schools and hospital administrators, need to better define health care at home — what it does, why it matters and how it makes a difference — to bring it to life for patients and family caregivers.

For example, health care at home is mistakenly perceived to be almost a matter of baby-sitting. In fact, the home health profession is a multi-dimensional, multi-disciplinary provider of superior post-acute clinical service.

We get more directly involved in patient care than ever before. Home health care professionals routinely manage medications, change bandages, clean surgical wounds and administer essential therapy — and do so compassionately, empowering patients (ours average 81 years of age) to live with dignity.

That kind of intimate attention yields concrete rewards. Patients under home health care sometimes move better, eat better, breathe better, suffer less pain and generally function better. In the best of scenarios, those unable to walk can once again climb to the top of the stairs. The man who lost the power of speech can once again tell his wife he loves her.

Evidence is mounting that health care delivered at home may enable patients to live longer lives, too, and, equally important, better ones. It can shorten hospital lengths of stay and lower re-admissions. It can raise the quality of care, improve patient outcomes and drive down costs.

As such, home health care is emerging as a microcosm of what the health care system should be doing. It gets us where we live. After all, true health care reform should always start at home.

Dr. Brian K. Nadolne is a family physician in Marietta and president-elect of the Georgia Academy of Family Physicians.

Member Profile: Alissa Boroff, Access Solutions Director

NAIPC Member Alissa Boroff holds degrees in Interior Design and Occupational Therapy. She is also a State of Minnesota Accessibility Specialist and Certified Aging in Place Specialist (CAPS). Alissa is currently the Director of Access Solutions. Access Solutions provides universal and accessible design consulting services to promote active, safe and independent living for people of all ages and abilities.

Services provided by Director of Access Solutions include:

  • Education / Prevention
  • Home Access Assessments
  • Modification Assessment Report
  • Specialty Product Specification
  • Design and Consultation
  • Funding Source Research and Assistance
  • Alzheimer's / Dementia Environment Consulting
Upcoming Events
  • July 15, 2013: NAIPC Washington, DC Chapter Kick-Off Meeting
  • July 25, 2013: Orange County, CA New Formation of Chapter Meeting
  • July 30, 2013: Council of Chapters Meeting
  • October 14-20, 2013: National Aging in Place Week
  • October 16, 2013: Aging in Place Summit, Washington, DC (by invitation)
Copyright © 2013 National Aging in Place Council, All rights reserved.