More people are using helpful, easy to use templates to initiate difficult conversations with family and medical providers about end-of-life treatment and values. The Conversation Project has starter kits available in 14 languages. You can visit their web site to download templates. https://theconversationproject.org.
Stanford Medicine created What Matters Most letters in 2015 to help start conversations on what matters most to you regarding how you enjoy spending your time, future life milestones that you don’t want to miss, and preference for future medical treatments. These letter templates are available in 8 languages and can be accessed from their web site. https://med.stanford.edu/letter/what-matters-letter.html
On April 25th Next Avenue and the John A. Hartford Foundation sponsored a live event on Facebook to allow participants to discuss successful strategies on how to talk to your doctor to get the most out of your healthcare. Watch the session here via Facebook.
Save the date! The annual education symposium hosted by the Colorado Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association is a one day Rocky Mountain Conference on Dementia. It will be held on April 29th at the Hyatt Regency Denver Tech Center from 7:30am until 4:30pm. Participants can select breakout sessions to attend throughout the day with experts sharing on topics such as: Understanding Alzheimer’s and Dementia, Resilience Strategies for Activities of Daily Living, Self-Care and the Power of Your Pen, Nutritional Support for Caregivers, Discussing Future Planning in Dementia – Promises & Pitfalls, Humor and Caregiving. There will also be sessions devoted specifically to individuals currently living with an early-stage diagnosis. Attendees are welcome to register if you have been diagnosed with Mild Cognitive Impairment or early-stage Alzheimer’s or dementia, or if you are a family member/friend of someone affected, or if you are a healthcare professional. Event cost ranges between $50-175.00. To register, call the Alzheimer’s Association at 800-272-3900.
The Savvy Caregiver class will be starting on Wednesdays from 6:00-8:00pm March 13 through April 17. It will be held at the Longmont Senior Center located at 910 Longs Peak Ave. This FREE 6 week class is ideal for family or friend caregivers helping a loved one living with dementia. The class is facilitated by Jessica O’Leary, a Gerontologist and dementia specialist. Call 303-651-8411 to register.
Need some holiday gift ideas for the older adults in your life? Below is a link from Daily Caring that highlights gift suggestions based on various categories. For example, gifts to reduce anxiety, gifts to help mobility and transportation, gifts to promote engagement and activities. Check out the full list here. https://dailycaring.com/big-list-gift-ideas-for-seniors/
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!
The annual Boulder County Senior Living Tour will occur this Saturday, October 6th between 10:00am – 3:00pm. Refreshments will be available at each stop. If you are seriously considering a move to a residential care community, remember to also visit unannounced at different times of the day and week to get a better understanding of their environment and staffing. The following communities will be participating in the tour:
Sunrise of Boulder Assisted Living and Memory Care
Brookdale North Boulder Independent Living
Brookdale Boulder Creek
Brookdale Meridian Boulder
Morningstar of Boulder
Balfour Senior Living, Louisville
Balfour Retirement Community
Flatirons Health and Rehab
The Peaks at Old Laramie Trail
Landmark Memory Care
Sunrise at Flatirons
The Alzheimer’s Association Colorado Chapter is sponsoring a new support group in Broomfield for adult children of a parent living with dementia. This group will meet on the 3rd Monday of every month at 6:00-7:30pm at the Holy Comforter Episcopal Church. 1700 W. 10th Ave. in Broomfield. For more information, call the Denver office at 303-813-1669.
There are many variations of hospital survival kits available on the market. After Raymond Poole spent 219 days beside his wife’s hospital bed, he had intimate knowledge on what to include in a practical yet comfort-focused hospital kit. His wife, Rebecca, received a double lung transplant from end stage cystic fibrosis. Whenever possible, providing comfort during those many months in the hospital was his primary goal. With Rebecca’s help, the husband and wife team created The Hospital Comfort Kit which is now available on Amazon. Check out what this kit includes and consider purchasing one for a loved one if a hospital stay is required.
World Elder Abuse Awareness Day is recognized on June 15. On that day from 3:00-4:30pm at the East Boulder Senior Center the public is welcome to join a discussion with local justice system experts about the current laws, investigations and prosecution that affect older adults being neglected and abused. The Boulder County Area Agency on Aging will have an educational session on June 12 from 4:30-6:00pm at the Longmont Senior Center entitled Know Your Rights. This program will be facilitated by the local Long Term Care Ombudsman department. They will discuss their role as advocates for the health, safety and rights of Boulder County residents living in nursing homes, assisted living, and other residential care communities. All long term care residents and their families have access to an ombudsman that is assigned to each care community. For more information contact 303-441-1173.