Where You and Your Parents Want to Be

Posted on

Sep 16, 2013


Colorado - Northern Colorado

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Assisted Living in between home and the nursing home; in between independent living and the nursing home; my final home. Being in between sometimes means you get missed. Ask any middle child.
When assisted living started in the mid 1990s the resident of an assisted living was an 83 year old woman with a walker, who lived on average 3 years in the assisted living. Today, those residing in assisted living in Denver are much older in their upper 90s. They require wheelchairs, oxygen, and intermittent medical oversight from a nurse. Adapted diets, transportation to medical appointments, medication management, and the creation of routine and structure to the day round out the needs of todays client. Families are the decision makers. The resident does not park his or her Buick in the parking lot and ask for a tour. They are not calling their children with Lets go today and pick out my assisted living facility, I am moving in the next two weeks. Even when everyone knows more support is needed to maintain a good quality of life, all hope the need for assisted living is not TODAY.

When the family finally calls the facility, takes the tour, has the family meeting to agree they are often late to the table. After the resident moves in, care is planned correctly, delivered appropriately and as negotiated with the resident, family, and the facility many families have then said to me WE SHOULD HAVE MADE THIS MOVE 2 YEARS AGO! Seriously, no one has ever said, we should have made this move 2 months ago, 2 weeks ago, or 2 days ago..it is ALWAYS 2 years ago. Wisdom is learning from those who have gone before you. Look 2 years out and plan your parents move to assisted living in Denver. Those who move in at the right time - adapt, grow, and make a new home for themselves. Thus, living longer in the environment both of you want.

Editor's Note: This article was written by Yvonne Myers, Health Systems Director of Columbine Health Systems. She can be reached at 970-482-0198.

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