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Dementia patients allowed to live at home thanks to new research program.


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Elderly Couple Staying at homeA Johns Hopkins research program that brought resources and
counselors to elderly Baltimore residents with memory disorders such as dementia significantly increased the chance they could continue to live successfully at home, a preference for most of them.

As part of the 18-month Maximizing Independence at Home (MIND) trial, a
dementia care coordinator came into the homes of the elderly patients to
address a variety of living and care issues before they spiraled out of
control and required the patients to be hospitalized or moved to a
long-term care facility, program coordinators said.

“The project demonstrated we were able to help people age in place without
sacrificing their quality of life,” says study leader Quincy Miles
Samus, Ph.D., an assistant professor of psychiatry and behavioral
sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. She is
expected to present the findings at the Alzheimer’s Association
International Conference 2012 in Vancouver on July 18. Constantine G.
Lyketsos, M.D., M.H.S., is the study’s senior investigator and Deirdre
Johnston, MRCPsych, is the study’s intervention team leader.

“Elderly people typically prefer to remain at home and this program increased
the likelihood they could,” Samus adds. “We hope this study can help
guide how community-based dementia care can be effectively and
efficiently delivered as the population continues to age.”

Samus says stay-at-home living for dementia patients also is likely to be a cost-effective move. Although her preliminary research didn’t crunch the numbers, she says that when people leave home, they often head to the hospital, a rehabilitation facility, a nursing home or an assisted-living facility – all more expensive options than home.

People with dementia, a growing segment of the population, suffer from memory impairment and difficulty thinking that affects their daily life and ability to care for themselves. They are at risk for physical disability, additional medical and mental health impairments, and placement in a long-term care facility. There are no cures for dementia.

The trial program included 303 people 70 years and older with memory disorders, primarily dementia and mild cognitive impairment, with 110 receiving the home visit and care coordination intervention. Each of the 110 was assigned a dementia care coordinator who oversaw progress and conducted a comprehensive assessment of needs, including whether or not a patient had a proper diagnosis, appropriate medications, behavior problems, untreated medical disorders such as high blood pressure, and hearing or vision concerns.

The coordinators checked for home safety, nutrition and food availability and whether patients participated in meaningful activities beyond watching television. They also assessed personal safety issues such as
the ability to drive a car or the risk that the person might wander off. They identified existing community resources to address any unmet needs.

Beyond such services, the program provided education
about dementia and memory problems to caregivers and patients, as well
as informal counseling and problem solving. Legal issues such as advance
directives and wills were discussed. The coordinators contacted the
families at least once a month, and more frequently if necessary.

At the beginning of the study, the researchers found a wide
range of unmet needs. Home and personal safety issues affected 90
percent of the study population. Some 65 percent were in need of general
medical care, 52 percent had a lack of meaningful activities and 48
percent needed legal/advance care planning.

At the end of the trial period, the researchers found that patients who met regularly with the dementia
care coordinator were significantly less likely to leave their homes or
die than those in the control group (30 percent versus 45.6 percent)
and were able to remain in their home significantly longer. The study
group had more of their needs met relative to the control group, most
significantly in areas of safety and legal issues.

The dementia care coordinators were paraprofessionals without specific prior training in caring for people with memory disorders, suggesting that coordinator skills can be acquired with relative ease. They received four weeks of intensive training including lectures and observation of dementia patients in a clinical setting. They were supported by a nurse and a physician and met weekly to discuss cases.

Samus says the results suggest wider application of the home care model should be evaluated in the future.

The study was funded by grants from THE ASSOCIATED: Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore, LeRoy Hoffberger, The Harry and Jeannette Weinberg Foundation, The Hoffberger Foundation, The Hoffberger Family Fund, Leonard and Helen R. Stulman Charitable Foundation, David and Barbara B. Hirschhorn Foundation, Lois and Irving Blum Foundation, Leonor and Marc Blum, Joseph and Harvey Meyerhoff Family Charitable Funds, The Henry and Ruth Blaustein Rosenberg Foundation, Baltimore County Department of Aging, Lois Blum Feinblatt, the National Institute of Mental Health and the National Institute on Aging.

Johns Hopkins researchers involved in the study include Betty Black,
Ph.D.; Christopher Lyman, B.S.; Amrita Vavilikolanu, B.S.; Malory
Wechsler, M.S.W.; Jane Pollutra, R.N.; and Peter V. Rabins, M.D., M.P.H.


AARP Call for Nominations.


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Call For Nominations!

We are pleased to announce that nominations are now being accepted for the 2012 Stephen J. Gools Award for Social Change.  Its purpose is to recognize outstanding individuals, couples, groups or non-profit organizations in Michigan who are making a powerful difference by bringing about positive social change in our state. The award honors the life of Steve Gools, former state director of AARP Michigan, who passed away in 2011. Gools was a man who cared deeply and had a strong passion for improving the lives of others – especially those who were unable to do so alone.

Please take a few moments to review the enclosed nomination materials.  Then think about the people with whom you have worked, have heard about from friends or colleagues, or have read about.  Among those names, it is very possible that you know someone who deserves to be honored with a nomination for the 2012 Stephen J. Gools Award for Social Change.

Nominations must be received in the AARP Michigan office no later than August 30, 2012. If you have questions about the Stephen J. Gools Award for Social Change or would like additional copies of the nomination materials, please contact Karen Kafantaris at 517-267-8916 or

We look forward to receiving your nominations and to sharing an opportunity to honor those in our state who are enhancing the lives of Michiganian’s.

Click Here to Get a Copy of the 2012 Stephen J. Gools Award for Social Change Nomination Form. 


Jacqueline Morrison

AARP Michigan

State Director

Do you need Aging-in-Place Products?  Click Here. 

New 50 x 50 inch walk in shower available


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50 x 50 barrier free showerEZ Able’s 50 inch by 50 inch walk in shower has a barrier free threshold and is beautifully designed.

This walk in shower, has a 1 inch beveled threshold and comes in 5 pieces so it is a great choice for bathroom remodels. This unit has a barrier-Free 1 inch beveled threshold and an interior dimension of 48 x 48 inches to meet Veteran Affairs / VA requirements.

Click Here to See the Product Page

Affordable Care Act Upheld


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President-elect Barack Obama signs a guest boo...

President-elect Barack Obama signs a guest book as Chief Justice John Roberts Jr. looks on during a visit to the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, D.C. on Weds. Jan. 14, 2009. Painting is of William Howard Taft, the only man to serve as President and Chief Justice. (Photo by Pete Souza/Obama Transition Team) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Moments ago, the Supreme Court released its ruling on the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

With Chief Justice John Roberts writing for the majority, the Court upheld the individual mandate under Congress’s taxing power.  The entire ACA has been upheld, including the Medicaid expansion, but the Court did limit the federal government’s power to terminate states’ Medicaid funds.  NASUAD will provide more details on this opinion as it becomes available.

Today’s opinion is available for download on the Supreme Court’s official website here:

Michigan Aging and Disability Needs Assessment Survey


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Michigan Aging and Disability Needs Assessment SurveyMichigan Aging and Disability Needs Assessment Survey.

The Michigan Statewide Independent Living CouncilDisability Network/Michigan, and Michigan Seniors – Michigan Office of Services to the Aging are sponsoring a survey.  They are asking Michigan adults over 50 or adults over the age of 18 with a disability to fill out the needs assessment survey to tell them about your life, your community and your needs.  They will use the information to plan services for the future.  This is the first time since 1987, the Michigan Office of Services to the
Aging is conducting a needs assessment of Michigan residents.

Why Your Input is Important:

There are several sections related to housing, employment,
transportation, information, social support and community services. Your
answers are completely confidential, and your individual responses will
be combined with responses from other Michigan residents for reporting
purposes. If you see a question you do not wish to answer, just go on to
the next question. If you wish to stop answering questions, just hit
“Exit Survey” link at the top right hand corner. We hope you will
participate because it is very important to get your thoughts and
opinions. The sponsoring agencies will use the information from the needs assessment to
review current state plans

Click Here to Go To Survey NOW.  The survey will take about 20 minutes to complete.

Please complete the survey by July 31, 2012

About the Survey:

The Michigan Aging and Disability Needs Assessment Project.  The Needs Assessment instrument was developed in a participatory process with stakeholders from the aging network, the disability network, and consumers.  It is anticipated that the reporting on aggregated state and county data will be available at the end of September.

Sponsored By:

For More Information Contact:

  • Elise Hill        | 517-348-5972 |
  • Carol Barrett | 517-349-0289 |
Do you need accessibility products or services? Click Here to Visit EZ Able®.  EZ Able® Accessible Solutions works with customers across the continental USA, providing a wide array of products and services that promote independent living.

Lakefront Living – EZ waterfront access.


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You love the view from the deck of your waterfront home.  You’ve loved your extraordinary view for years, but now the stairs that lead to the water are daunting?  Are the stairs preventing you from full use of your waterfront?  There is an easy and affordable answer.

Bruno Outdoor Stair LiftAn economical and smart solution to this common problem is an Outdoor Stair lift.

What is required?

1) The stair lift mounts to the stair treads.  Therefore a solid staircase and treads are needed.

2) A standard 110V GFCI outlet.

3) A stair lift that is rated for outdoor use.

Click Here to see our Outdoor Stair lifts.

4) Required stairway width varies by stair lift model and required width may vary by state.  Please check with your local building codes.

5) Weight capacity up to 400 pounds.

6) Can be used on stairway as long as 50 feet!

Why wait?  Call 877-392-2531 for details or CLICK HERE  to use our handy contact online form and we will contact you.

Some States require a permit for stair lift installations including but not limited to:
Washington, Oregon, Michigan, Minnesota and New Jersey. Please check
with your state and/or local government office regarding permitting.

Modifications to Make Homes Safer for Seniors


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Modifications to Make Homes Safer for Seniors

By Meg McNamara

LEWISTON, ID – The key for aging homeowners is to prevent falls and injuries before they happen by proactively addressing safety issues in the home.

“As we age we should always think about that we are going to be in our house long-term,” said Angie’s List owner Angie Hicks. “Even if you’re in your 40′s or 50′s and are considering doing some remodeling you might want to consider some elements that might make it more friendly for you as you age.”

Certified Aging in Place Specialist Kent McCool has some ideas of what those might be.

“It can run the gamut from there’s front entrances, making sure that the lighting is sufficient in a home,” said McCool. “The steps; that you’ve got handrails going up and down the steps. Depending on the person’s capabilities or mobility issues, maybe ramps that can be required. There may be stair lifts that can be required. Things that help them get around the home safer.”

Project costs can range from a few hundred dollars to tens of thousands of dollars. But for homeowners Frank and Cora Einterz, who renovated their home after Frank suffered a stroke, it was worth every penny.

“Do you remember what things were like before we renovated it?” asked Cora. “Yup,” said Frank. “The bathroom now is practical convenient and absolutely useable for me.”

Falling is the leading cause of death from injury in adults over the age of 65. One-third of those accidents could be prevented by making the home safer.

Watch Video Here.

Click Here for Home Modification Products.

Click Here for Original.

Baby Boomers Dominate New Housing Trends


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June 9, 2012

Mr. EZ Able  

The largest American generation is either retired or quickly nearing retirement age. Baby boomers, the generation born between 1946 and 1964 and who count more than 76 million, may be getting older, but they are definitely not ready to head to the retirement home!

The boomer generation is more active than generations past, has a more sophisticated style and wants options in their homes. Whether they are selling the homes where they raised their children or staying put and redesigning, boomers are making an impact on new housing trends.

Here are some housing trends that boomers enjoy:

• Home offices. Some boomers are working past the age of 65. As they transition from a traditional nine-to-five job, however, they want home offices for flexibility. A second career or part-time employment often eliminates the hassle of commuting, keeps them active and brings in supplementary income.

• Tech/media centers. The tech-savvy boomer generation wants top-of-the-line amenities for their homes, such as a media room with surround sound and central control systems, which manage all media sources in one location. The house may include a wireless home network (Wi-Fi), remote-control lighting and security features.

• Wider doors and hallways. Designing a home that is livable now, but can transition to be functional as the occupant ages is important in ensuring that the home will be a good long-term investment. Wider doors and hallways are useful for moving larger furniture today, and will also be wheelchair-accessible tomorrow.

• Better lighting/bigger windows. The need for more lighting usually increases as we grow older. To accommodate this, builders are adding more windows and making them larger to let in more natural light. They also are adding more light fixtures in areas including under cabinets and in stairwells.

• First-floor bedrooms and bathrooms. More than 40 percent of new homes have master suites downstairs, a 15-percent increase from more than a decade ago. Boomers not wishing to go up and down stairs with bad knees and aching backs have helped fuel this trend. The bedrooms also are bigger, with larger walk-in closets and bathrooms that have a separate tub, shower and dual sinks.  Find Showers and Walk-in Baths for Remodeling Here.

• Easy to maintain exteriors/landscaping. Yard work and other landscaping chores may no longer be enjoyable to aging homeowners. People who move to a new home when they retire may opt for a maintenance-free community. Those that choose to stay in their homes might make improvements to exterior surfaces such as installing stucco, brick or low-maintenance siding. Lawns are being replaced with living patios, decorative landscaping or flower beds, which can be a hobby for gardening enthusiasts.

• Flex spaceFlex spaces, which have become more prevalent in both new homes and remodeling, are rooms that take on the purpose of the present homeowner’s needs, but can adjust with changes as they occur. What was once a guest bedroom can be redecorated to serve as a hobby room or library.

EZ Able® – Certified Aging-in-Place Specialists (CAPS), visit

To find a designated Certified Active Adult Specialist in Housing (CAASH) or Certified Aging-in-Place Specialist (CAPS) builder or remodeler in your area, visit

Karen Nakamura is executive vice president/CEO of the Building Industry Association of Hawaii.


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