Archive for March, 2007

Keeping the mind young is a puzzle

Friday, March 30th, 2007

As people age, their mind and body both age. Exercise is great for helping the body and research shows that puzzles can help keep your mind young. Any type of puzzle that challenges your mind will do the job. Your newspaper, puzzle books, games and these websites are all great places to find crossword puzzles. You can also Google crossword puzzle and get a large list of options.

Seniors on the internet

Tuesday, March 27th, 2007

Baby boomers and seniors are the fastest growing and most affluent segment of the population. Most businesses have recognized this and have begun creating products and services geared towards them. One area that has been far behind in creating services towards this group has been the internet. Companies think that seniors do not understand the internet and are afraid to use it. While in many cases this is true, more and more people in the 50+ market are getting online. In addition to, there is an emerging number of websites geared towards seniors. Here is a small list of them.

Is a Care Manager the answer?

Thursday, March 22nd, 2007

Trying to figure out the best solution for a senior can be extremely confusing. Is home care the right way to go? Should I look into assisted living or a nursing home? Is there any federal money available to pay for care? Who will oversee everything if I hire a private person? These questions and many others are very common. For many people, the help of a care manager can be a godsend. Care managers or case managers come in many forms. some are certified some are nurses, some social workers and still others have no degree but are very knowledgeable about helping seniors. While certified care managers can be very expensive, sometimes they are the best way to go. More information can be found in an article recently published on the website titled “Using a Care Manager”

CareGrade adds new article “Home Safety - Preventing Falls”

Monday, March 19th, 2007 has posted a new article on how seniors can prevent falls and can be found at

Pennsylvania added to

Monday, March 19th, 2007

Senior service providers such as nursing homes, assisted living facilities, elder law attorneys, home health care companies and other providers from Pennsylvania have now been added to the growing CareGrade database. These providers are all now available for reviews from individuals who have had experiences with them. To find the PA providers, go to the link below. Next up, New York, Florida and California.

Something to think about when choosing assisted living

Saturday, March 17th, 2007

A few years ago, my husband and I had to find an assisted living facility for his mother. We wanted something near us, that offered good care, was physically attractive, and had activities that she might enjoy. We thought we had found the perfect place, but when we brought my mother-in-law over, she was very unhappy there. It seems that the facility met all of our requirements, but the one thing that we overlooked was her need to be with people with whom she was comfortable, namely people of
the same religion.

The same thing happened recently to friends of ours who were looking for an assisted living facility in Florida for their brother. They had to visit many before being able to eliminate those in which they felt he would not be comfortable. It seems that as people age, they often feel more comfortable when with others who share their race, religion, or ethnic background. This may not be true as baby-boomers age, but it is true for many who are now in their 70’s and 80’s.

I realize that it may not be politically correct, but the reality of the situation is that this is important when looking for a home health aide or an assisted living facility. It would be very helpful, and reduce the anxiety and stress of what is already a stressful situation, if that kind of information was available. Perhaps pictures could be included for home health aides, or, for assisted living facilities, a general breakdown by race, religion, or ethnicity, such as the US census does, could be part of the description.

Affecting the way your mind ages

Friday, March 16th, 2007

While aging is inevitable, science is showing that there are ways to be proactive with your health. Everyone knows that eating well and excessing help your body stay fit. Now there is research showing that there are things you can do to help your mind stay fit as well. The following is a short list of ways to keep your mind functioning as you age.

Stay Socially Active
Keep Learning
Eat a Nutritious, Low-fat Diet
Seek Help for Sleep Disorders
Practice Stress Management
Seek Help for Other Underlying Medical Conditions
Talk to Your Doctor
If you’re concerned about memory loss or other cognitive impairment, do not try to diagnose or treat yourself.
Your doctor can provide assessment, counsel and, if necessary, treatment.

Using the internet to find help

Thursday, March 15th, 2007

I received a call yesterday from a frantic daughter of two aging parents. Her father has dementia and his frail elderly wife was having a hard time caring for both of them. The problem was that she lived several hours away and was unfamiliar with the local senior provider resources. She had no idea where to turn to for information. With sites like and numerous other sites also available, the internet is a wealth of information. Google searches for the particular service required along with the town, zip code our county and state should bring you what you need. This would look something like, “Assisted Living” AND “Burlington County” or “Care Manager” AND ” New Jersey”

The Gray Market for Home Health Care

Thursday, March 15th, 2007

A recent article in the New York Times by Jane Gross spoke about the growing underground or “gray” market for home health care workers. The article basically says that the increasing cost of private pay home health care is causing a large underground market. While there are dangers using a person who has not been professionally screened and interviewed, the cost saving seems to outweigh this for many. A good compromise may be using referral agencies who do the screening, but do not add on many of the costs of traditional agencies. This is a topic which will become more and more important as the baby boomers begin to grow.

Long Island Care at Home Vs, Evelyn Coke

Wednesday, March 14th, 2007

How will it affect Home Health Care?

Facts of the Case
Long Island Care at Home (Long Island) employed Evelyn Coke as a “home healthcare attendant” for the elderly. Coke sued her employer, claiming rights to overtime and minimum wage under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The District Court ruled for Long Island, holding that Coke fell under the FLSA’s exemption for employees engaged in “companionship services.” The court gave deference to the Department of Labor’s regulation 29 CFR Section 552.109(a), which applies the exemption to employees in “companionship services” who are “employed by an employer or agency other than the family or household using their services.”
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit reversed. It ruled that the regulation was a misinterpretation of the statute, and was therefore unenforceable. The Second Circuit declined to give the Department’s regulation any of the judicial deference normally due to administrative regulations. No Chevron deference (”strong deference”) was due, because the regulation was under a section titled “Interpretations.” Regulations that are interpretive rather than legislative are not entitled to Chevron deference. The Court of Appeals also ruled that the regulation was “unpersuasive in the context of the entire statutory and regulatory scheme,” and thus not entitled to Skidmore deference (”weak deference”) either.
Question I; Is it better for home health care workers to get overtime pay or will it actually hurt the aides as they will be taken off of the case once they hit 40 hours and therefore actually earn less money?
Question II; Is it harmful to home health care to have to pay the caregivers overtime or will it hurt people who need the care and are already having a hard time affording it?

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