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            Where’s the nearest adult day care center in my neighborhood?  What’s the difference between Medicare and Medicaid?  Who qualifies for nursing home care?  How do I get personal care services in my home?  Who qualifies for senior housing?  Why is grandma acting so strange?  Who can help my elderly neighbor?


            All these questions about aging and caregiving can now be answered by calling the Senior Helpline, a service being offered by the City’s Department of Community Services.  The Helpline, operated by the agency’s Elderly Affairs Division, dispenses advice and information to seniors, caregivers, and anyone wanting more information on aging and services.  In some cases where a face-to-face assessment is needed, staff may visit with a client in their home.


The Helpline number is 768-7700.  Hours are 7:45 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.


            Karen Miyake, Administrator of the City’s Elderly Affairs Division, said, “Calling will immediately connect you to an experienced and knowledgeable staff person for consultation, and if needed, referrals to services.” She emphasizes the importance of getting information before a crisis occurs.  “Preventing falls, finding out about supportive services as one ages, discussing long-term care options, or what to expect from a person with Alzheimer’s disease can reduce trauma to the older person and their family.”


Also available is the latest edition of the Senior Information & Assistance Handbook, published by the Department of Community Services through a donation from American Savings Bank.  The publication, which has been around for more than 25 years, is the largest and most substantial version to date, with even more explanations and descriptions of terms and issues and listings of hundreds of agencies that provide services for seniors.  Call the Senior Helpline for information on how to obtain copies.





Karen Miyake, 768-7708


Thursday, September 13, 2007

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