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In-home service grant vouchers available for La Plata County residents

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Thursday, Feb. 11, 2016 3:56 PM

Courtesy La Plata County Senior Services

Do you know someone or are you a person who is living alone and aging who could use some extra help with shopping or taking medication?

Are you recovering from an injury or illness and need help for a period with meals and light housekeeping? Or perhaps you are care giving an elderly person or a grandchild and could use a break for a few hours?

In the interest of helping people who are age 60 and older stay at home, rather than being admitted into a long-term care facility, La Plata County Senior Services offers several supportive services. These services include up to $500 in respite caregiver vouchers for family members or nonprofessionals who are caring for people age 60 years or older, or for grandparents age 55 and older, who are caregivers of a child who is related by blood or marriage. Similar grant vouchers can be applied to homemaker services and in-home personal care services from either of two approved service providers in La Plata County: Visiting Angels and Comfort Keepers.

Priority will be given for people who are most in need due to low income and for people who haven't used a voucher in the past two years. All of the services have specific certification, training and oversight requirements for providers performing the services.

Respite caregiver vouchers offer temporary supports or living arrangements to provide a brief period of rest for caregivers. The respite period may be an overnight stay or by the hour on an occasional or emergency basis. In-home care services that may be obtained under the respite care or homemaker voucher program include basic medical procedures, skilled grooming and other personal care as well as assistance with mobility. Personal care services in the home include skilled grooming and feeding, assistance with ambulation and exercises, medication, homemaking, attending to nutritional requirements, first aid, and identifying safety hazards. The exact services available will depend on what the provider offers.

To receive respite or personal care services under this grant voucher program, the person under care must be unable to perform at least two activities of daily living (ADLs) without substantial assistance, or must have mental impairment that requires substantial supervision. Examples of ADLs include getting dressed, eating, bathing and other bathroom care, mobility and hygiene.

To receive homemaking services, the person must be unable to perform at least two instrumental activities of daily living (IADLs) without substantial assistance or require substantial supervision due to a mental impairment. Such IADLS include meal preparation, housework, laundry, shopping, medication management, appointment management, money management, telephone use and transportation access.

La Plata County Senior Services and the San Juan Basin Area Agency on Aging can provide more specific details and requirements on request. As with any voucher program, the recipient may find other resources to cover the balance owed for the services. All individuals will be given an opportunity to donate to the program. We believe that older adults have the right to live independently and with dignity and respect, even if they are not fully able to care for themselves.

La Plata County Senior Services also receives funding from local, state and federal sources and provides congregate and home-delivered meals, recreational activities, assisted transportation services and home chores in Durango, Bayfield, and Ignacio.

The service grant vouchers are administered through the ADRC (Aging and Disabilities Resources for Colorado) Specialist at the Durango-La Plata Senior Center, located at 2424 Main Ave. in Durango. The ADRC Specialist serves older adults (age 60 plus) who are living in La Plata and San Juan Counties and adults with disabilities aged 18-59.

To apply for respite, homemaker, and personal care vouchers, contact Annie Satariano to schedule an appointment at 382-6444.

For information on all La Plata County Senior Services, please go to http://co.laplata.co.us/departments_officials/human_services/senior_services

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