The Administration on Aging has designated February as National Senior Independence Month. SAGE Eldercare in Summit has been committed to supporting the independence, well-being and quality of life of older adults, their families and caregivers since 1954. During the past year, the organization has assisted more than 6,000 people in Union, Essex, Morris, and Somerset Counties and beyond.
One program that helps assess ways to allow older adults to remain independent is SAGE’s GPS (Guidance Planning and Support) Services, which was initiated in January 2012. GPS can step in and provide families and caregivers with needed answers on how to provide the best care for the older adults in their lives. Our Care Navigators are registered nurses who specialize in geriatric care and they provide personalized support, care planning and guidance to those who are caring for a loved one.
GPS is especially helpful during times of a transition, when a loved one is returning home after a hospital or rehabilitation stay, when there are needs to plan for the future, if there is a new diagnosis and/or medication regimen, or if someone has suffered the loss of a spouse or partner.
The service begins with an assessment of physical and emotional health, support networks, and overall well-being, as well as a review of medications, evaluation of home safety, and assistance with advanced care planning. Additionally, a “Vial of Life” document is created which includes a personal health record, medication list and emergency information all in one packet.
At the end of the initial assessment, the Care Navigator provides the family caregiver with a written summary and plan regarding care options and available resources. Contact is continued with the family for up to one month regarding the plan of care. There are additional options available to the caregiver – medication management, wellness visits by nurses, social work support, nutritional counseling and application assistance.
SAGE’s motto is “Let our family take care of you.” If you find that you need help and guidance to determine the best programs and services to care for your aging parents, neighbors or spouse, contact us at 908.273.5550, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.sageeldercare.org.