By Benjamin Goodin
You wouldn’t think twice about wearing your glasses, knowing that distances can look blurry without them. Similarly, you wouldn’t leave your hearing aid sitting on the nightstand if you were expecting company over for lunch. Many seniors are very independent, and with the appropriate devices or a few tricks, they can still see, hear, and get around almost as well as they used to. The great majority of seniors state that they want to live at home as long as possible, but all will face challenges to that independence as they age. Still, many try to continue their lives as they always have in their homes, making do when a situation is challenging or letting some needs or tasks fall into neglect when they find they are not as able as they once were. Many cling, sometimes stubbornly, to wavering independence. As it turns out, many don’t know that getting the help they need is as easy as donning their glasses or charging their hearing aid. In fact, some don’t even know that home aid is even available.
Forty percent of adults over 55 need daily assistance in some form, and a large portion of the population will be entering their golden years rapidly — Americans over 65 years old will grow from 56 million to 84 million by 2050. Although assisted living and long-term care are fine options for seniors with medical needs or difficulties performing normal daily activities, most seniors need only occasional assistance or help with a specific household task. As Americans currently are living healthier for longer and families are often dispersed over long distances, there is a growing demand for services that allow seniors to bridge the gap between living independently in their long-time homes and retirement homes.
Home Helpers of Scott County helps to fill this rift in the spectrum of senior care services by offering non-medical, in-home, and transportation services. Home Helpers is a national franchise that provides insured, bonded, and background-checked employees to help seniors live better and more capably at home. They work with seniors to match their individual needs with home helpers who can assist with cooking, cleaning, laundry, errands, transportation, medication reminders, and any non-medical need they require assistance with.
Twenty-one percent of older Americans who live at home miss out on engaging and social activities because they are isolated by their inability to drive or by mobility concerns. Home care can re-open the world to an isolated senior through transportation options, or by simply having someone to come by and provide companionship regularly. Whether a senior needs assistance or just company, geographically distant or busy relatives can feel assured knowing that someone is checking in and checking up on their loved one.
Peace of mind is an excellent benefit of receiving home care, but there are other, more tangible advantages that getting help within the home can provide. Most starkly, home care can be tailored to a senior’s specific needs, so they receive only the type and amount of care that they currently require; the ability to customize services can provide a significant savings to the senior and family as an alternative to a retirement home. Seniors who receive home care, on average, tend to live better and for longer as home care workers can prevent in-home accidents and alert medical professionals to changing health conditions in a timely manner. Seniors receiving home care, even non-medical services, are hospitalized less frequently and for shorter durations than seniors who live without assistance. A senior’s changing needs are often met more quickly and with greater accuracy when they are assisted by a home care worker, ensuring there are only short transitions between critical health and home situations. For example, a senior returning home from surgery may need additional help around the home during recovery. Because home care services are flexible, a senior can change their level, type, or frequency of care whenever they need and change it back when they no longer require additional help.
Although Home Helpers is just one of the many home care agencies in Scott County that can assist seniors choosing to live independently, they pride themselves on being one of the easiest choices to work with in Iowa. The organization works with Iowa Medicaid, long-term care insurance, and private pay options to help seniors find an affordable rate for their custom-tailored services. Focusing solely on servicing Scott County, Home Helpers keeps a small, focused staff, so you’ll always see the same faces when they visit and hear the same voices when you call them. The office staff consists of two individuals who manage the employees and administrative tasks, so you are sure to always talk with someone who is familiar with your needs. There are 30 home helpers on staff, ranging from licensed CNAs to those who gained experience in care from assisting loved ones at home. No matter what an individual employee’s credentials, you can rest assured knowing that Home Helpers’ caregivers are locals from your community, and they serve with heart. Home Helpers of Scott County’s commitment to quality care is apparent, and they are pleased to have been selected by the Genesis Hospital System as one of the four home care agencies in the Quad Cities that the association has vetted and recommend to patients returning home.
If you or someone you know has been living at home but not living as well as they should, a free in-home consultation of needs can be arranged with one of Home Helpers’ professionals. The chances are, you won’t have to sacrifice your independence or home to live well. You don’t have to make do; you just have to reach out for the help that is waiting.
Home Helpers of Scott County has been helping seniors live independently since 2004.For more information on services or to arrange a free consultation, you can call Home Helpers locally at 563-386-4969, reach them on the web at Homehelpershomecare.com/Davenport
or find them on Facebook under Home Helpers of Scott County.