We've talked a lot lately about ways that people and organizations in Cincinnati can promote healthy, positive aging. But we should probably take a moment to do a deeper dive on the numerous healthy aging resources available to seniors and family caregivers here in the Tristate.
From community-based and non-profit senior services, to hospital-based resources, to programs funded by state and local governments, there are a bevy of places that seniors can turn to for help. Let's explore some of them here.
1. TriHealth's MedaCheck service
For many seniors, one of the most difficult aspects of aging is the effective management of medications.
A lot of older people in the United States take several daily prescriptions to manage age-related and/or chronic illnesses, and it can be quite confusing to remember to take them all on time, keep them refilled, stay abreast of potential side effects or adverse drug interactions and so on.
TriHealth's MedaCheck program makes all of that easier, and reduces the chance that your senior loved one will incur a medication mishap leading to an otherwise avoidable hospitalization. It's an easy-to-use, dedicated computer tablet for reminding seniors when and how to take their medications each day.
Once purchased, there's no confusing set-up — TriHealth professionals program the device for you. They input all the information about your medications that you or your caregivers provide.
All you need to do is plug in the tablet, turn it on, and it will begin providing you with timely reminders to take your medications and educational resources about your prescriptions.
Best of all, should you forget to take your medicine, you'll receive a reminder phone call from the MedaCheck service. If they don't reach you by phone, an automatic alert is sent to your primary caregiver and/or family member, giving seniors and their relatives important peace of mind.
2. The Ohio Benefit Bank
Many Tristate seniors — especially those on lower, fixed incomes — have to make tough decisions every day about allocating their resources. But no elder should ever be forced to decide between paying household bills, and seeing their doctor or buying food and medicines.
The Ohio Benefit Bank helps older Buckeyes connect with community-based programs that can help them stretch their household budgets, with food assistance, subsidized utilities, affordable housing, free tax preparation and more.
Seniors or their caregivers can use the service's simple-to-follow, online questionnaire to determine which benefits they may be eligible for, then they can apply for those benefits directly through the site. It's a significant timesaver and source of relief for elders who just need a little extra help making ends meet.
3. Deupree Meals On Wheels
For those seniors aging in place on Cincinnati's East Side, who need nutritional support and regular safety checks, our sister ERS retirement community, Deupree House, offers a wonderful need-based meal delivery service.
Deupree Meals On Wheels delivers hot meals, prepared in its own kitchens, four days a week (Tuesday-Friday) and provides heat-and-serve frozen meals for non-delivery and inclement weather days. Client seniors are able to choose their entrees and beverages, and special diets (low sodium, diabetic, pureed, etc.) are easily accommodated.
The service can even work with seniors' schedules, to arrange delivery at convenient times; a mid-day medical appointment, for example, needn't result in a missed meal.
Deupree Meals On Wheels' trained volunteers also perform vital safety checks for seniors who live alone. If they do not receive an answer at the door, the service follows up with the client senior's emergency contacts and/or first responders.
Learn more about it here!
4. and 5. Council on Aging of Southwestern Ohio and the United Way of Greater Cincinnati
Didn't see what you were looking for above? No surprise — there are simply too many to list in one article! But, fear not. Here's where you can find more information.
Both the Council on Aging of Southwestern Ohio and the United Way of Greater Cincinnati maintain online databases of community-based resources for seniors and their caregivers. You can also receive guided help by calling the United Way's 24/7 hotline, 2-1-1.
Use these resources to help yourself, or your older loved one, to continue living well in 2018. And keep following our blog for more tips on positive aging and healthy aging in Cincinnati.