Home Instead Senior Care Waterford recently hosted a free Senior Safety Information evening in Dooley’s Hotel, Waterford.
Danette Connolly, Director of Care, Home Instead Senior Care, was joined by a panel of specialists who provided advice to seniors and their families on how to optimise personal safety and wellbeing.
Danette offered helpful tips to reduce the risk of trips and falls in the home, how to be prepared should an emergency arise and how to be vigilant in light of the increased incidents of identity fraud and internet scams.
Also on the panel was Nicola Buchanan, Pharmacist with Mulligan’s Pharmacy. Nicola spoke about the importance of medication management and revealed that 80% of elderly self-medicate with over the counter products and this group were seven times more likely to suffer from Adverse Drug Reactions (ADR). Nicola went on to stress the importance of medication reconciliation and compliance, stating that 50% of medication non- compliance amongst seniors is deliberate.
Bernie Shiel of Emergency Response highlighted the benefits of personal security alarms and showcased the recently launched Homecare Support package in association with Home Instead Senior Care. This initiative provides a trained local care professional promptly, 24 hours a day, once the button has been pressed on a security pendant or unit and an initial assessment is complete.
She further welcomed last month’s Government decision to reverse the cut in grants for personal security alarms. The allocation for devices under the Senior Alert scheme was to be reduced from €2.45 million last year to €1.1 million in 2013 as a result of budget cutbacks, but that decision was turned around following the securing of resources to reinstate the grant at last year’s levels.
Cllr. Gary Wyse drew attention to the excellent work of Waterford City Council’s Sustainable Neighbourhood Unit and showcased some of the practical and helpful security aids that are available to all Waterford seniors at greatly reduced rates.
Finally, Garda Jonanne O’Mahony of Waterford Community Policing underlined the importance of remaining vigilant in light of the increased incidents of bogus callers or doorstep scammers. She emphasised that seniors should always ask for I.D., but more importantly stressed that “when in doubt, keep them out!”
Danette Connolly said that the premise of the evening was to offer as much practical advice to seniors and their families as possible. “There is so much information out there for seniors in relation to personal safety, security, medication and health, we felt it was apt to condense it into one highly informative evening.”
Danette added “We were delighted with the calibre of speakers and how well they communicated that with a little extra care and vigilance our seniors can be safer and more secure in their own homes.”
Home Instead Senior Care offers an array of senior care services such as light housekeeping and laundry, meal preparation, transport and companionship, up to and including personal care, dementia care, post hospital care and disability care.
To find out more about the Home Instead Senior Care service visit www.homeinstead.ie or contact the Waterford office on 051 333966.