Avoiding Crisis in Senior and Disability Care

Hi, my name is Patty Hanson. I’m an aging life care professional, a licensed professional counselor, managing director and co-owner of IKOR of Western Pennsylvania. I’ve also created a brand of programs to support seniors and adults with disabilities called the solutions for dignity programs.

Since 2011, I’ve been leading a team of registered nurse patient advocates, personal needs coordinators, and financial advocates as we navigate and support, life management services and advocacy needs of seniors, adults with disability and children with special needs.

I am confident that everyone has been touched by the COVID-19 pandemic. And the challenges that it has presented around the world are just devastating. As an advocate for our clients, I’m particularly saddened by the multiple news stories that describe senior care facilities and our clients that have been stricken by the pandemic – seniors at risk, families unable to see and touch their loved ones, and seniors dying alone. 

The pandemic has been hard on our team, our clients, and those working and living in our senior care communities as well as those living at home.

Supporting children with special needs who have gone without the much needed support services, or those that have gone online has been made difficult for families to provide the care that was provided by our schools. It has also been difficult for adults with disabilities who are not able to get the support they need because they’re living alone or in a community setting.

It has been truly heartbreaking and challenging for our team members. COVID-19 has highlighted a glaring weakness in the health care systems and our government programs for our most vulnerable populations.

This pandemic has been even more complicated in our current isolated climate for supporting our client’s well being as they are staying at home. Such isolation in the elderly and people with disability and children with special needs can exacerbate existing health problems, while also increasing fear and emotional suffering around mental health concerns.

COVID-19 provided an extreme example of how being present with your loved ones is really important. How we can learn from this crisis to better prepare for essential care for our loved ones in a respectful and compassionate manner is really vital. Serving our clients by supporting caregivers through innovative solutions has been the foundation of my course since 2011. 

While the impact of COVID-19 was unfortunately outside of anyone’s control, there is a great deal that we’ve learned that enables us to support our clients better. Our proactive attempt to avoid crises is of utmost importance in helping seniors preserve the greatest quality of life. 

What supports are available for your loved ones? Our life care management programs and services can help you or your loved one navigate health changes and mitigate fear and frustration. Our registered nurse advocates are exceptionally well equipped in coordinating care and medical appointments, managing medications, hospital discharge, and rehabilitation requirements, as well as evaluating needs for safety and quality of life. 

Additionally, we support with emotional well being and environmental concerns. The IKOR life care management team serves as a key advocate for care across medical, psychosocial, environmental, and routine financial areas. 

We can support with creating budgets, paying bills or acting as guardian or a power of attorney. Being prepared for a crisis has never been more apparent than it has been in the last several months. While events with such enormous impact are hopefully a once in a lifetime, having resources available to readily address needs that may not be easily addressed is where we can help.

The solutions for dignity safety net program can provide in person support by our registered nurse advocates and personal needs coordinators. We provide technology to monitor and connect our team members or designated family members or professionals and caregivers through a touchscreen device to remotely support those we work with. 

If you have questions about how IKOR Life Care Management Team or the solutions for dignity safety net program can support your loved one, call our office today toll free at 855-456-7972, or check out our website at www.ikorofwpa.com.

Leave a Reply