A $75,000 grant from the Florida Department of Elder Affairs will help Sarasota Memorial Health Care System provide free in-home assessments and assistance to local residents caring for seniors with memory problems for a limited time this year.
The state awarded the grant in January to Sarasota Memorial's Memory Disorder Clinic to help families struggling with the emotional and financial challenges that come with caring for a loved one with memory problems at home.
“At any given time there are close to 300 families on waiting lists for senior services in Sarasota County,” says Kathleen Houseweart, manager of geriatric services at Sarasota Memorial and the in-home assessment program. “Many are overwhelmed and have no idea there are resources in our community right now that can help them."
The in-home assessment program – Informed Choices – is designed to support caregivers and enable more seniors to age comfortably at home. Anyone over the age of 18 caring for someone 60 or older with memory problems is eligible. Sarasota Memorial will send trained staff to the home to complete a thorough assessment, offer basic training and tips on caring for someone with memory loss and prepare a care plan that links caregivers with local resources when possible.
The program – which has no income requirements or restrictions – runs through June 30, 2009. For information about the program or to arrange a home visit, call 917-7197.
About Sarasota Memorial
Sarasota Memorial Health Care System is a regional referral center offering Southwest Florida’s greatest breadth and depth of inpatient, outpatient and extended care services. Its 806-bed hospital is Florida’s second largest acute care public hospital. It is the only hospital in the region that has been ranked repeatedly among U.S.News & World Report’s “America’s Best Hospitals,” recognized among “America’s Safest Hospitals” by Forbes.com and awarded Magnet Nursing Services Recognition – the nation’s highest honor for excellence in nursing.
Date Published: February 11, 2009
Media Contact: Kim Savage
Phone: (941) 917-6271