HEADLINES

CT Alzheimer’s Care Specialists Help Families Keep Loved Ones at Home

There are currently 80,000 people living with Alzheimer's disease in Connecticut. While some families may opt for care at a facility, local home care agency Assisted Living Services, Inc. has developed new solutions in combination with technological devices to ensure comprehensive care at home.

“We know from experience that an Alzheimer’s diagnosis poses real challenges for the entire family,” explains Mario D’Aquila, MBA, Chief Operating Officer of Assisted Living Services, Inc. (ALS) and Senior VP of Assisted Living Technologies, Inc. (ALT). “It may seem overwhelming, but we can offer guidance since 90% of our clients have some degree of dementia.”

D’Aquila notes that if families want to keep their loved one living at home, they need to be prepared for the responsibilities, which include managing medications, monitoring every-day activities, ensuring home safety, and addressing loneliness and isolation.

There is no cure for Alzheimer’s, but there are new medications that can slow progression and lesson symptoms. According to D’Aquila, Alzheimer’s patients in mild to moderate stages of the disease can significantly improve medication compliance with today’s technology. Automated Medication Dispensers provide both visual and auditory alert, and can even send a call to the patient as a reminder, as well as notify caregivers if a regimen is not being followed. ALS has experienced compliance near 95% with clients across Connecticut who use these dispensers.

“Families should partner with a trusted provider who can create a strong plan for day-to-day care management and ensure it is continually implemented,” said D’Aquila. “Even better, is an agency like ALS that has management staff who are Certified Dementia Care Practitioners (CDP®).”

Administered through the National Council of Certified Dementia Care Practitioners, the CDP® certification represents that the front line staff and health care professional has received comprehensive knowledge in the area of dementia care and completed the Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia Care course/seminar. The CDP® commits to ongoing professional development and re-certification every two years. The certification reflects a deep personal commitment to maintaining the dementia patient’s quality of life physically, emotionally and socially.

In addition to quality of care, families also need to compare the cost of a facility versus in-home. If the client qualifies for Medicaid, they may be eligible for the CT Homecare Program for Elders which pays for in home care. This program can benefit those with cognitive disabilities and memory impairment brought on by Alzheimer’s Disease, Parkinson’s Disease and other dementia related disorders. ALS is a credentialed provider for this state program.

“Because we are a contracted provider of the CT Homecare Program for Elders, caregivers are required to take Alzheimer’s and dementia care training,” said D’Aquila. “Most of our in-home staff also have previous experience caring for people with dementia.”

In conjunction with personal care, the sister company of ALS, Assisted Living Technologies, Inc., offers a wide variety of primarily wireless, sensor-based technologies for a second layer of security. Stovetop fire prevention devices, personal body worn GPS locators, automatic fall detection sensors, video-visit systems and more provide constant monitoring.

“Wandering is one of the most dangerous behaviors of Alzheimer’s and may happen earlier in the disease than families expect,” said D’Aquila. “Today’s technology allows us to set up a virtual safety net inside and outside a home to ensure the wellbeing of a loved one.”

D’Aquila explains that discreet wireless sensors placed throughout a home can detect motion, activity from room-to-room, exiting, sleep patterns, and even moisture to help caregivers address an issue before it leads to something more serious.

D'Aquila encourages family caregivers to visit the ALT Technology Arts Gallery in Cheshire to view and experience all of the latest devices that can assist with every aspect of caring for an Alzheimer’s patient. All of the products are available online as well.

“Families need to know that they don’t have to go it alone when caring for a loved one,” concluded D’Aquila. “There are countless resources and support to ease the stress.”

About Assisted Living Service, Inc.

Since 1996, award-winning home care agency Assisted Living Services, Inc. (ALS) in Cheshire and Westport has provided quality care to residents across Connecticut. Its unique CarePlus program blends personal care by over 600 employees and caregivers with technological safety and monitoring devices from sister company Assisted Living Technologies, Inc. ALS was ranked on the 2020 Inc. 5000 list of fastest growing companies and recognized by Home Care Pulse® as a “Best of Home Care Leader In Excellence”, a designation given to the best home care providers in the nation. Learn more by visiting www.assistedlivingct.com or calling 203.634.8668.

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