LITTLE VALLEY - During the holiday season, many individuals experience increased stress and feelings of isolation. This is especially true for older adults who are struggling to remain independent and in their own homes. Many caregivers and children come home to visit for the holidays and worry about leaving their elderly parents without any assistance in the home. Cattaraugus County Department of the Aging wants to remind individuals and their caregivers that there are a number of programs to help alleviate these concerns. The department's NY Connects division offers information, assessment, referrals, and options counseling confidentially and at no cost. A few of the programs available are listed below.
The Expanded In-Home Services for the Elderly Program can help with personal care, housekeeping, chore services, running errands, and providing Personal Emergency Response Systems (emergency beepers). EISEP is a non-Medicaid program. The program is based on need and income; however, many individuals have no cost for their care.
The Department of the Aging also has a program to assist seniors with legal counseling in such areas as: entitlement issues (Social Security, railroad retirement, Medicare and Medicaid), veteran's issues, health insurance claims, long term care planning, and financial and consumer related issues. Our lawyer meets with older adults in the Department of Aging office or in the client's home without the expensive costs usually associated with legal assistance and representation.
The Family Caregiver Support Program provides essential information, assistance, and counseling. It also sponsors caregiver and Alzheimer's support groups, as well as caregiver and Alzheimer's education.
Older adults who are experiencing depression or feel as if they have no quality of life may be eligible for our PEARLS counseling. The program is evidenced based and designed to provide assistance for older adults who feel they are lacking a purpose in life and are looking for greater personal enrichment as they age.
Of course, one of the most well-known services offered by the department is comprehensive nutritional programming, including nutrition education and counseling with our registered dietitian, Meals on Wheels, and congregate dining.
These are just a few examples of services that can help older adults remain independent. The Cattaraugus County Department of the Aging offers many other programs that benefit older Cattaraugus County residents. Don't let your holidays be stressful and worrisome. Call us for answers to your questions. For more information, contact the Cattaraugus County Department of the Aging at 373-8032 or 1-800-462-2901.