New System Provides Innovative Ways to Avoid Missing Prescription Medication

 I am so glad someone finally came up with a good medicine reminder.

MedCenter System features new approach of pill stocking (with days and dates), talking alarms and visual aids

Miami, Florida – April 15, 2013 – Prescription medicines are an important component of health management, however a growing volume of research indicates a disturbing trend in consumer noncompliance. Millions of Americans do not take their medicines correctly. People simply forget to take them, are confused about the proper dosage and timing, or lack the personal organization to carry out the daily task.

After noticing the problem of consumer noncompliance, Martin Cooper began a project based on a simple idea; create a talking system of remembering your daily medications using the date of the month – The Med Center system. This system emphasizes the “Date” rather than the “Day of the Week.” The “Date” is located on each Pill Box and Pill Cavity, the visual display of the Clock as well as audibly during the alert messages. This repetition of the “Date” helps ensure proper medication compliance, even when the user is unsure whether it is Monday or Tuesday.

“Growing up, my father would forget to take his necessary medication – which would result in him fainting and passing out,” says Martin Cooper, the inventor of The MedCenter System. “Coming up with a way to organize my parents’ medications and encourage their adherence was the true motivation behind creating the system,” he says.

 

The system works in the following steps:

· Load the entire month’s meds into the (31) Daily Pill Boxes and place them into the Organizer with their Green ends up, showing they are full.

· Set up to 4 Daily Alarms to alert you when your medication is due.

 

· At the beginning of the day, take the correct Pill Box out of the stand and place it into the “Today’s Pills” tray on the front of the Organizer Stand.

· A repeating friendly reminder notifies you of the time, the date and which daily dose to take. “Good morning! Please take your morning pills for the 20th.”

 

· Press the red “Alarm Acknowledged” button to confirm compliance and the MedCenter Talking Alarm Clock tells you when the next daily dose is due.

 

· At the end of the day, return the Pill Box to the stand with the Red end up to show the day’s pills have been taken.

 

· Press the green “Talk / Time” button at any time for an audible notification of the current time and date.

 

· Press the blue “Alarm Check” button at any time for an audible notification of the upcoming alarms.

· The clock also features an easy to operate, talking, Set procedure for all four alarms, the time and date.

 

· Large easy to read LCD with backlight makes the clock easy to read, even in the dark.

Doctors and Pharmacists agree that taking medications on a set schedule is crucial for managing your health. With the MedCenter System, taking your medications on schedule, becomes a part of your daily routine.

The MedCenter System has a suggested retail price of $69.95 with the talking LCD clock and $34.95 without it. Other products include: the Monthly Mini Monthly Organizer ($24.95), Traveler Weekly Organizer ($19.95), Daily Pill Organizer ($18.95), Daily Pill Organizer with Alarm ($28.95), and 5-Alarm Sport Watch ($24.95). More products can be seen here: http://www.medcentersystems.com/Store.html. 

MedCenter System products can be found nationwide at a variety of retailers, including select Kroger pharmacies, Discount Drug Mart Stores, Thrifty White, Kerr Drug, Ralph’s, CSN/Wayfair, The Gift Closet, Stacks & Stacks, Active Forever, Healthy Directions, Alimed, LS&S Dynamic Living, Medline, Miles Kimball Easy Comforts catalog, The Shopping Channel (Canada), Mary Maxim Catalog (Canada), Amazon.com, WalMart.com, Target.com, Meijer.com, CVS.com, Sears.com, Kmart.com, ForgettingthePill.com, TheInsulinCaseShop.com, EPill.com, DiabetesandMore.com, MaxiAids.com, AEKmarketingco.com, AssistedLivingStore.com, ActiveandAble.com, and on the company’s e-commerce site: www.medcentersystems.com.

 

 

 

and on the company’s e-commerce site

 

 

Eldercare Locator Announces Holiday Campaign to Help Prevent Financial Exploitation of Older Adults

Please help spread the word about this critical campaign against financial elder abuse.

Washington, DC — As financial exploitation targeting older adults continues to become more prevalent in the United States, the national Eldercare Locator announced today that it has launched a campaign to encourage older adults and their families to address this critical issue and to get informed about the warning signs and resources available to help prevent exploitation.  Research shows that as many as 5 million older adults are victims of elder abuse each year and financial exploitation costs seniors an estimated $3 billion annually.

The National Center on Elder Abuse has partnered with the Eldercare Locator to produce a consumer guide that is now available to help inform this discussion.  Click this link to get a copy of the guide.

“Financial exploitation of older adults can take many forms and can come in many guises including telemarketing scams, identity theft, fake check scams, home repair fraud, and even “sweetheart scams” whereby a con artist befriends or romances an isolated lonely older adult to gain control over their finances.  Unfortunately, financial exploitation can  often be committed by a person you know and trust—a friend, caregiver or even a family member, which makes it even more difficult,” said Sandy Markwood, CEO, n4a.

“There are steps older adults and their families can take and resources available to help identify and remedy this serious problem.  To ensure your safety and the safety and security of your finances, it is critical for you to assess your financial situation on a regular basis.  We are seeing more and more financial abuse across the country which is why this holiday season, we hope families will check in with their older relatives to be sure that their finances are in good order and in good hands.”

Signs of Financial Exploitation

There are several signs of financial exploitation for families to look out for, including-

Financial activity that is inconsistent with an older adults past financial history;

Multiple withdrawals within a short time period;

Inconsistent signatures on documents;

Confusion about recent financial arrangements;

New names added to accounts or other changes to key documents that have not been authorized;

A caregiver or beneficiary who refuses to use designated funds for necessary care and treatment of an older adult and

An older adult who feels uncomfortable or even threatened by a caregiver or another individual who is seeking to control their finances.

Families that are concerned about financial exploitation should report the issue to state agencies that deal with protecting the safety and well-being of older adults.  The campaign, which encourages older adults and their families to plan and be cautious, released tips to help prevent financial exploitation, some of which include:

Learn how to avoid fraud and scams 

–Consult with a trusted person before making any large purchases or investments.

–Do not provide personal information (i.e. Social Security number, credit card, ATM PIN number) over the phone unless you placed the call and know with whom you are speaking.

–If you hire someone to help you in your home, ensure that they have been properly screened with criminal background checks completed.  Ask for certifications when appropriate.

–Talk with an attorney about creating a durable power of attorney for asset management; a living will; a revocable, or living, trust; and health care advance directives.

“Financial Exploitation can be prevented if people know the right questions to ask and where to turn for help, said Mary Twomey, Director, National Center on Elder Abuse.  “Although it is a sensitive issue and one that can be difficult to broach, it is critical for families to address it, and there are many useful resources available to guide them through the process.”

About Eldercare Locator

The Eldercare Locator is the first step to finding resources for older adults in any U.S. community and a free national service of the U.S. Administration on Aging (AoA) that is administered by the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (n4a). Contact the Eldercare Locator at 800.677.1116 or the website Eldercare Locator.

November 2012 marks the 20th Anniversary of the Eldercare Locator, which has received more than 2.3 million calls since it launched in 1992 and assisted millions of older adults and caregivers connect with local aging resources.

 

Caregivers-Watch Changes in Your Elderly Loved One While in the Hospital

Since my mom’s recent death I am still convinced that families and religious organizations need to develop more  systems for support. One of the systems needed is education and enhanced visitation of the elderly when they are in the hospital. We are often concerned, as we should be, about correcting the chronic or critical health condition. But other stuff can also happen like confusion and decline in the mental status of our loved one that MAY NOT be dementia.

I saw this happen many times with my mom. One night when I was not at her bedside, she took her IV out and thank goodness a visitor to her roommate alerted the staff. When I arrived all the blood was already cleaned up and she was telling me about it in a state of shock.

I know we cannot be with our loved ones all the time. But if only a respite system was in place in all our families to rotate sitting with our loved ones to keep them focused and notice changes that we need to advocate for medical intervention-that would help a lot.

Here are two articles I want to share with you on delirium in the hospital.

Mental Trouble for Elderly Patients

Another Hospital Hazard for the Elderly

My Mother, Sarah Calhoun, She Has Been Put to Rest in my Heart

This morning I decided to put on a pair of my mom’s favorite boots to walk in the snow to church. My mom loved these boots that I brought for her almost a year ago.  But if you knew my mom she was not a shoe person so  these are just one of two pair of boots she owned.

Mom passed on December 20, 2011 at the age of 84. Putting on her boots made me reflect on something said at her homegoing service about “walking the talk.” She took many children from her housing development, “Little Bricks” to Sunday School and she always tried to not just talk about God’s love but reflect in in her actions.

Sometimes after church she wanted to take the children out to eat.  She tried to be there for them. So you have to know that tears came to my eyes when I saw some of them attend and speak at her service. It still brings tears to my eyes as I type this. But must wipe them because I can’t see good.

She was a woman of action and when I gave my remarks at the funeral I used a word mnemonic SARAH.

S-SHARING

A-Action (She always tried to help folks)

R-REAL (She kept it real)

A-Attitude of gratitude and Attitude of trust in the Lord

H-Healing through laughter

I spoke and used short illustrations of each point. Perhaps I will share in another post.  I may also share the eulogy my husband did.But putting on these boots today reminded me so many sweet memories and a powerful legacy.  I only hope that I remain faithful and as much of a woman of action.

As her memory became more challenged after a brain stroke I started writing notes to her around her apartment.  I once wrote a note and placed it on her mirror, “God still has a lot for you to do”. She told me that she often read it and thanked me.

I know that she has a burial ground spot but I am not there everyday so I have placed her at rest in my heart.

For those of you who would like a copy, here is the funeral program for Sarah Calhoun.

10 Costly Mistakes That Seniors May Face During Medicare Annual Enrollment Period

Enjoy and consider following some of the sage advice during the Medicare open enrollment.

By Guest Blogger, Ross Blair From Plan Subscriber

1.      Missing the Fine print: not reading the fine print in your annual plan Notice of Change about which benefits have changed and which have remained for your plan.

2.      Going on Auto-pilot: not doing anything and simply auto-enrolling in the same plan. Many plans change cost and drug coverage annually. What worked last year for you may not work with the same plan this year and could cost you money in terms of higher prescription drug costs and other out-of-pocket expenses. Changes in medication usage can also change what plan offers you the best economic value.

3.      Stable premiums = stable coverage: just because your Medicare Advantage or Part D premium hasn’t gone up doesn’t mean that you are getting the same plan for the same price next year. Deductibles, co-pays, and prescription drug coverage are just a few of the benefits that may have changed. Research and find out what the total out-of-pocket cost will be for this plan.

4.      Not asking for help: not asking for help from qualified professionals in understanding and selecting a plan or using tools to evaluate prescriptions. You can get help through your State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP), PlanPrescriber, licensed health insurance agents who are certified to sell Medicare, family members or by calling 1-800-Medicare.

5.      Not getting a second opinion: by not shopping around and seeing what other plans are out there, you may be costing yourself more money in 2011. This is an important decision, so take the time you need to make the right choice and understand all of the options available in your area.

6.      Extended care: don’t assume nursing home care is a covered benefit; it is not. Medicare does not provide coverage for custodial care, assisted living facilities or long term care. However, skilled nursing facilities may be covered following a related hospital stay.

7.      My drugs are covered: don’t assume your doctor knows what is in your network or what prescriptions are in your formulary. You can enter your current medications on a website like www.PlanPrescriber.com to see which drugs are covered on your current plan and compare the projected costs with other plans available in your area. You can print out this comparison and take it with you to see the doctor. Make sure your doctor knows your in-network labs, physical therapists, or durable medical providers.

8.      Medigap has me covered: don’t assume Medigap plans will pay claims that Medicare won’t. Medicare only pays for medically necessary claims. If Medicare doesn’t pay either because the service rendered is not ‘medically necessary” or a Medicare covered benefit, neither will the Medigap plan.

9.      I’ll qualify: don’t assume you will automatically be accepted in a Medigap plan outside of Open Enrollment or Guaranteed issue qualifying events. Medical underwriting does occur.

10.   I’m covered world-wide: don’t assume Medicare covers you when traveling outside of the United States. Medicare will not pay any medical claims outside the US and its territories. However, certain MediGap plans might extend emergency coverage outside of the U.S.

Source: PlanPrescriber, Inc. ( www.planprescriber.com )

Will The Health Reform Bill Help Caregivers?

According to a recent article by Robert Stock, there will be super help for caregivers with the advent of the new Health Reform Bill. Take a few minutes to read his explanation. I for one, welcome all and any help I can get that will assist my mom for now and hubby and I in the future.

As a childless couple we do not have the foundation of children to depend upon for assistance. Yet, sadly, we know many who have children and do not have the needed support they need during their illness.

Read this insightful article below.

Health Care Reform Will Impact Long-Term Care

Robert W. Stock Contributor

AOL News
(March 26) — As health care reform became the law of the land this week, a huge bloc of Americans with a unique interest in the outcome sat watching on the sidelines.

The 49 million people who care for older family members were hidden in plain sight, as usual, quietly shouldering a burden that so often takes a heavy toll on their finances and their physical and emotional well-being. Many of them — I know a few — are opposed to the new health care law, even though it includes one of the most important steps ever taken to improve caregivers’ lot, especially those of the middle-class persuasion. Of course, hardly any of them are aware of that.

The Community Living Assistance Services and Supports Act, otherwise known as CLASS, provides for a national insurance program to help cover the cost of long-term care — something 70 percent of people over 65 will need at some point along the way. The premiums will be much lower than those for private plans, and you won’t get screened out because you’ve already had some health problems. Once vested after five years, enrollees unable to care for themselves will be able to claim cash benefits for as long as needed.

A health aide helps a patient at his home in Miami. The new health care reform law could “transform long-term care” and make it possible for more patients to stay at home, said the chief of the National Council on Aging.

If you’re rich, you don’t require much financial help with long-term care. If you’re poor and can no longer fend for yourself, Medicaid pays the bills, often at a nursing home. For the rest of us, long-term care — at home or in an institution — now requires that we, or our caregivers, choose from among some unpleasant options.

We can spend down our retirement savings until we’re eligible for Medicaid funds. We can protect our savings by taking out expensive long-term care insurance — it costs my wife and me more than $5,000 a year. Or, depending on how dependent we are, we can throw ourselves, or be thrown, on the mercy of our families.

My friend — I’ll call him Frank — was a retired lawyer and in great shape until four years ago. He had just turned 90 when emergency surgery laid him low for months on end. Then his sight and hearing began to go. “I’m one of the lucky ones,” his wife, Helen, told me. “His mind is fine. But he can’t get around on his own — he falls, even with a walker. He can’t make a cup of tea or shower by himself.”

For now, Helen can afford to hire an aide for a few hours a day to help with Frank and allow her to get out of the apartment. “James gives me a life,” she said. The future looks darker.

Surveys show that 90 percent of Americans want to age at home. Frank is no exception, but he never signed up for long-term care insurance. “If I couldn’t keep taking care of him, I don’t what I’d do,” Helen said. “If he went into assisted living, it would use up all our money. It’s very scary.”

CLASS, one of the legacies of the late Ted Kennedy, offers caregivers and care recipients another option. “If it’s successful, if a large enough number of people sign up, it will transform long-term care,” says James Firman, president and CEO of the National Council on Aging. “It will create a market-based economy for keeping aging people at home.”

That’s an important “if,” since the program, by law, must be self-sustaining. Premiums will generally be collected as part of workers’ payroll deductions unless they opt out. The younger the worker, the smaller the premium.

There is a vicious circle built into the current arrangements. Many caregivers must hold down a job and maintain their own separate family household while also watching over an aging parent. That kind of pressure can have consequences.

In recent studies, workers 18 to 39 years of age who were caring for an older relative had significantly higher rates of hypertension, depression and heart disease than non-caregivers of the same age. Overall, caregivers cost their companies an extra 8 percent a year in health care charges and many more unplanned days off.

In other words, the strains of family caregiving can hasten the caregiver’s need to be the recipient of care.

CLASS bids to crack if not break that vicious circle. Its benefits would make it much simpler and less expensive for families to make sure Mom gets the support she needs to be able to spend life’s endgame where she wants — in her own home. Good news for Mom, and good news for the future health of her caregivers.

In the last few days, I’ve conducted a poll of a dozen friends who have been closely following the health care reform debate. I wanted to find out how much they knew about CLASS.

Not one among them had even heard of it. It somehow seemed fitting that this major program, just like the caregivers themselves, was hidden in plain sight.

2010 AOL Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Do Home Health Agencies Provide Free Flu Shots For Home Health Aides?

Do Home Health Care Agencies provide free flu shots for their Home Health Aides? I wondered about this question because many many Home Health Aides are underpaid but extensively needed to provide home care.  If they are sick their options for sick days are few. Some agencies just do not have the resources to provide paid sick days.

Yet, if they are sick and go to work anyway it is silmilar to the wattress or kitchen helper who may be sick but works anyway because they just cannot afford days off. The result can be a spread of infection to those they serve,

I firmly believe the the Home Health Aide should get as many perks as possible. So, if you know of a Home Health Care Agency in the US that gives perks like free flu shots or sick days please post a comment. They should be applauded and recognized.

In addition, many baby boomers are transiting to other careers. Many are looking into home health care as an option. It would be good to know where the good agencies are residing. When you think about it an agency that cares for it’s people will probably go out of the way to care for your loved one.

Taking Care of My Mother-Caregiver Series

This is a guest post by the author of Judys Caregiver’s blog , Mariah Kissel

Taking Care of an Aging Parent

My name is Mariah Kissel and I love my mother. She has always been there for me. I was never a sweet little girly girl , and as teenage daughters go, lets just say my parents had there hands full. My mom and dad where constantly fixing my mistakes and covering my butt. When I was in the sixth grade, my class was going to put on a show for the PTA. It was a medley of songs from the Sound of Music. Everyone in our class got to be in the show but only a few were selected to be a Von Trapp child. My teacher was picking the last Von Trap girl and it was between myself and one other student. She told us to bring in a costume on Thursday and she would pick the girl with the best one. Well, of course I waited to tell my mother the costume part until Wednesday night. “If I dont get this part I will die.” Yes I was a mellow dramatic child. I think I cried myself to sleep that night because my mother didn’t rush out to find the perfect dress for me. The next morning I woke up and there it was. The perfect dress hanging on my bedroom door. My mother had stayed up all night sewing together this amazing costume out of scrap fabrics she had laying around her craft room. I got the part in that show because of her talents, not mine.

My mother was always doing things like that for my sister and I. I cannot think of one major event in my life that she wasn’t a part of . When I wanted to move to California she helped me find an apartment and helped pay the bills for said apartment. A year later when I called, begging her to come get me because I couldn’t take LA anymore, she drove four hours in a U-Haul with my dad, packed me up and moved me back to Las Vegas and back into her house. That was just the first of many, many, many times that I would move back in with dear old mom and dad. She was there when I got married and when I got divorced. This amazing woman was even in the delivery room when I had both my children. Katelin in 94 and Jacob in 96. she was the best grandmother. I never had to buy a Halloween costume for my children. Whatever they wanted to be she would make it happen. They were her pride and joy. Even when I told her I was once again getting married, she helped plan the most exquisite wedding. I guess you could say she was as perfect a mom as you can get. She was my best friend.

I Never thought in a million years that all of that care, love, happiness and friendship could be gone in an instant. So when I got that call, that devastating call. The one that said my mother was sick, confused and alone. The call that said she would need 24 hour care for the rest of her life, I can honestly say that there was no hesitation in making my decision. A decision that would change both her life and mine. My mother spent 35 years taking care of me and it was time for me to return the favor. I became my mother’s caregiver right then and there. Caring for a sick aging parent is the hardest thing I will probably ever have to do, but no matter how hard it can get I wouldn’t change my decision to take care of the woman who always took care of me.

In my blog, you will get a glimpse of what it is like to be Judy’s caregiver and daughter. The good, the bad, the funny…The not so funny. I’m not here to give great advice, all though I might try from time to time. I’m just here to let the hundreds of thousands of sons and daughters taking care of their parents know that they are not alone.

Caregiver Blogs? Please Send Your Best Posts. Postive Points and Pleasing Humor

I want to feature caregiver blogs for a few days. Why? Because not only am I a care giver but many, sooo many baby boomers are providing care for a loved one. Many are doing inhome care,  site visits, or doing what they can long distance.

It can provide a strain, both  emotionally and physically on the care giver.Although there are support groups out there many of us just don’t have that quality time to attend. Some of us get great therapy, hope and information from blogging.

So, if you have services or just plain support to save sanity regarding caregivers please share. Now if you want to be a guest blogger please email me, rosiehorner(at)gmail.com, with your blog post. Please  I don’t want just ads but added value information that can help all that read this site.

Thanking all of you ahead of time.

Just hope that the information can help somebody.

Rosie

Dear Baby Boomer, What Are the Commericals in Your Personal Soap Opera?

This week I realized that all of life is one big Soap Opera. I than began to thank God for the commericials. I am talking about those short pauses that occur to give us peace, happiness or special excitment in the midst of the dramas. For example, something simple like reading a good book while in the waiting room of a doctor’s office with a loved one.

Oh, don’t forget about that new Zumba class or the collage making project. I have recently started a new hobby and reading, chatting about coin collecting. I even started a blog. So, now I relax with a magnifying class looking at my change before I roll it up.

My husband has started taking guitar lessons and yes he started a blog for that also. But, now he takes a pause to play with those chords. Sure will be glad when he can play that BB King he promised me.

Or going to your fav coffee shop or little diner to enjoy something special while waiting for the line in the “Whatever place of tension” to go down. How many of you know about the pause at the end of a very trying day relaxing on Twitter, in front of the TV or special quiet time of prayer?

Personally, my faith and humor is keeping me sane. So I welcome those commercials in  my life.

What every it is if you feel like sharing it just might help someone else today. But just remember don’t Tivo your life, keep those commercials coming.