Wyoming Senior Citizens, INC.

National Family Caregiver Support Program

The Family Caregiver Support Program serves the caregiver who is responsible for a functionally dependent older adult.  The recipient is someone who is unable to perform at least two activities of daily living or due to cognitive or other mental impairment, requires substantial supervision. WHAT WE DO:

  • Respite care for family of elderly, chronically ill or hospice patients.
  • Light housekeeping with attention to a clean, safe environment.
  • Prompt care receivers to perform activities of daily living.
  • Monitor to assure the safety and well-being of care receivers.
  • Reminders for self-administration of medications.
  • Encourage exercise and leisure activities for client.
  • Provide caregiving tips, assistance and individualized training to families.

This is all done through a Care Management team made up of Wyoming Senior Citizens staff, the care provider and the family to insure care that is holistic in nature.  The program will utilize some Senior Companion volunteers and some highly skilled and trained respite workers. The Wyoming Senior Citizens, Inc. Family Caregiver Support Program serves populations in nine Wyoming counties – Natrona, Laramie, Carbon, Goshen, Big Horn, Fremont, Converse, Hot Springs, Washakie.

HELPFUL HINTS FOR CAREGIVERS

1.  Fall proofing a home:

        a.  Place rubberized non-slip back to area rugs and runners.

        b.  Patterned rugs can confuse one's depth perception, solid colors are better.

        c.  Place electrical cord along the wall, one can easily trip over them and if under a rug they create an uneven surface which is dangerous.

        d.  Keep floors clear of clutter, magazines are especially slippery.

        e.  Furniture that blends into the carpet like a glass topped coffee table can create a serious hazard.  

        f.  Apply non-slip adhesive to furniture legs to prevent sliding.

        g.  Highly polished or waxed floors are dangerous.  Also using non-glare polish helps those persons with vision problems.

        h.  Reaching for items creates a dangerous situation.  If things are not placed between hip and eye level, use a reacher.

2.  Proper Lighting:

        a.  Older people need three times more light to see adequately.

        b.  Make sure light switches are accessible at room entrances and not located across the room.

        c.  For older persons always use the maximum wattage suggested.

        d.  Auto touch lamps (those that turn on when touched) are helpful for elders, especially those with arthritis.

3.  Questions to ask about a new medication prescribed:

        a.  Can a generic medication be substituted?

        b.  What does the medication do?  What is its purpose?

        c.  How is the medication given (pill, liquid, suppository?)

        d.  How much of the med should be taken each time?

        e.  Can I crush this medicine?

        f.  Should it be taken on a full or empty stomach?

        g.  What, if any, foods should be avoided while I am on this medicine?

        h.  How should the medicine be stored?

        i.  What do I do if I miss a dose?

        j.   Is this medicine replacing one I am presently taking?

        k.  Is the doctor aware of all other medications I am taking?

        l.  What are serious possible adverse side effects I should be on the lookout for to occur?

4.  Masks:

        a.  Wearing a mask protects you from breathing airborne germs through your mouth and nose.

        b.  A mask needs to cover both your nose and mouth completely.

        c.  Wear a mask when working with a person who is coughing frequently.

        d.  Use a mask when the chance of any body fluid splashing is possible, like when using a Water-pik.

        e.  Change the mask if it becomes moist or wet.

        f.  Remove the mask after leaving the room and try to touch it only by the elastic or ties.

        g.  Dispose of the mask in an appropriate container.

        h.  Wash your hands!

5.  How to execute a care task effectively:

        a.  Make verbal contact prior to touching the care receiver.

        b.  Briefly explain what you are about to do?

        c.  Verbally inform the care receiver during every step of the task being performed.

        d.  Ask the care receiver to assist within his or her limitations,  make it a team effort.

        e.  Express appreciation for the assistance the care receiver provided.

        f.  Verbally indicate when the task has been completed.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

Kelly Shaffer, NFCSP Manager

106 West Adams Avenue

Riverton, WY  82501

307-856-6880

800-856-4398

scpcoorriv@wyoming.com

Copyright © 2010 Wyoming Senior Citizens, INC.