Taking care of a loved one as they age is often a sad, overwhelming job. We hope you find these resources for elder care helpful.
The AGS Foundation for Health in Aging
This site was created by the American Geriatrics Society’s Health in Aging Foundation, to provide consumers and caregivers with up-to-date information on health and aging. Find information on common diseases and disorders that affect older adults, potential medication issues, specific considerations for the older adult with multiple health conditions, resources tailored to specific topics, and tip sheets to help you manage your health (or that of a loved one). The site also helps you find a geriatric care specialist in your area, and provides information on care/living options.
A Place For Mom
This website offers free resources and services. Find living options in your area, including independent living, nursing homes, Alzheimer’s and dementia care, and respite care. The extensive resources on-line include articles on a wide range of topics related to aging, dementia, and senior care; a guide to managing “tough conversations”; financial issues and more.
This National Council on Aging site provides information to help seniors find state, federal and private benefits programs to help pay for healthcare, medications, food and other services.
This business provides caregivers information and support as they care for aging parents, spouses and loved ones. The site provides thousands of original articles, advice from more than 50 experts, a community for caregivers and a comprehensive directory of services. Helpful tools include how-to-guides and checklists.
Eldercare Locator is a public service of the U.S. Administration on Aging. The site connects you to services for older adults and their families. Search on-line for information on trustworthy local resources, organizations and services. Resources include fact sheets addressing a range of issues faced by older adults and family caregivers. Call their hotline or chat on-line for help Monday – Friday 9:00 am – 8:00 pm Eastern.
Grants for Seniors
This website, run by a group of volunteers, lists resources by state that provide financial help and grants for a variety of issues, including healthcare.
This non-profit provides helpful, easy to understand information on a variety of elder care topics, including aging issues, Alzheimer’s Disease, end of life, healthy aging and senior housing.
MedlinePlus Seniors’ Health
This US government site provides a wide variety of information related to senior health, including research findings and links to many valuable resources.
National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys Inc.
This non-profit organization represents lawyers and others who work with elders and their families. Find lawyers in your area who specialize in elder care issues, including planning for disability, Medicare, Medicaid, elder abuse, contested medical care decision making and more. Brochures on a variety of topics are available, as well as a link to helpful resources.
National Aging in Place Council
Resources and information to help seniors remain active and healthy as well as help in planning for future housing and care needs.
National Association of Area Agencies on Aging
You can use this website to connect to one of over 600 US government funded local agencies on aging. These local agencies can help you connect to specific programs, including respite care, support groups, emergency assistance and education.
National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA)
NCEA is a program of the US Administration on Aging. Information is provided for each state’s resources for help when elder abuse or neglect is suspected. Other helpful resources include an FAQ section with detailed information on elder abuse.
National Institute on Aging
This US government site provides a wealth of information on health and aging, including a comprehensive guide on Alzheimer’s disease. Topics include health and aging, doctor-patient communication tips, caregiving, and clinical trial considerations for seniors. There is quite a bit of information available in Spanish.
National Resource Center on LGBT Aging
This site provides extensive information of interest to LGBT seniors (and for those caring for them). Topics include elder abuse, HIV, housing and long term care, transgender aging, and mental health issues. Use their locator service to find resources in your area. Some information is available in Spanish.
This website provides independent, objective, analysis, product evaluations, and explorations to make the challenges of growing older less challenging for seniors. Find reviews on medical alert devices, medication management, senior living facilities, and more.
Therapy Dogs International
This volunteer organization is dedicated to bringing dogs to nursing homes, hospitals, hospices and private homes for therapeutic visits. The organization regulates, tests and registers therapeutic dogs and their volunteer handlers in all 50 US states and Canada. A great way to brighten up the day of a patient.
This Caring Home
This organization is funded by several foundations, including the Weill Cornell Medical College. The site provides information on best practices and home care for patients with Alzheimer’s and dementia. Find videos, photos and animations, along with expert reviews, of home furnishings, smart technologies and home care products all specifically chosen for the needs of these patients. Their Virtual Home lets you explore research-based solutions to home safety and daily care issues. Explore the challenges and solutions for bathrooms, bedrooms, kitchen and dining areas, living rooms, stairs, and outdoors. Their technology allows you to “visit” a room, click on an area within the room, and see videos and tips.
Helpful Web Based Publications
14 Ways to Help Seniors Avoid Social Isolation
Home Design for Fall Prevention for Seniors
Personal Emergency Response Systems (PERS)/Medical Alert Devices
There are many providers of systems that seniors can use to get help in the event of an emergency. Several options are described below. All of these options provide a pendant device that can be worn, or carried, with a button that is pushed for emergencies. They all offer 2-way communication, putting the user in voice contact with their trained emergency agents. They will also contact family members as needed in emergencies. Please beware that the telephone sales agents for these companies may be assertive. Do not commit to a particular service without reviewing all of your options.
For more information, read the reviews by the Retirement Living Information Center and a comprehensive analysis of over 20 options by the National Council on Aging.
Here are a few options:
Connect America offers 3 different types of PERS, one of which allows the users to take a mobile device, along with the pendant, any time they leave their home. The other systems require the users to be in the vicinity of the base station in their home, which is hooked up to a standard phone line. Once personal health information if provided to the service, they can relate important facts to the EMTs in an emergency situation. There is no cost for the equipment, just a monthly fee.
Great Call offers the 5Star Urgent Response System. This system consists of a single device that uses mobile technology to connect the user with their emergency response agents from any location. Their GPS technology can locate the user, even if the user is unable to respond or unsure of his/her location. They provide help for medical emergencies, as well as for other situations such as roadside assistance and help when the user is locked out of their home or car. Once personal health information is provided to the service, they can relate important facts to the EMTs in emergencies. The monthly service fee includes unlimited calls to a registered nurse, 24/7. There is a one-time charge for the actual device, but the monthly service fees are lower than other providers.
Mobile Help offers a system that can be used at home, with a base station (no phone required) or out of the house with GPS technology. When out of the house, the user must carry a small mobile device and the personal pendant with the button to depress for emergencies. They also have a Fall Button™ option that automatically detects when the user has fallen and connects the user to the agents (there is an additional fee for this option). Once personal health information is provided, they relate important facts to the EMTs in emergencies. There is no cost for the equipment, just a monthly fee.
The system by Lifeline (formerly Philips Lifeline) uses a base station which can only be used in the home, within range of the base station. The system can connect through your telephone, cable modem, dial-up internet or DSL service. They also offer Lifeline with Auto Alert, which allows it to automatically connect the user to the emergency response agents if it detects the user has fallen (there is an additional fee for this option). There is no cost for the equipment, just a monthly fee.