Thank You for Supporting Senior Living Week 2014

On behalf of the UMHS Housing Bureau for Seniors, I would sincerely like to thank you for the sponsorship you provided for the 2014 Senior Living Week event held from May 2 – 10, 2014, during Older Americans Month. Thanks to your generosity, we were able to raise awareness among boomers, seniors, and their adult children about a variety of senior issues from How to Downsize to Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementias and the Implications for Care, and introduce them to the variety and scope of senior housing and lifestyle options available in our community.

Thanks to your support, we were able to educate over 300 families, many of whom participated in Open Houses at area senior residences and at Workshops throughout the week. These participants also provided us with some new ideas for workshop topics for the future.

This event would not have been a success without the generous support you have provided us throughout. We deeply appreciate your willingness to take part and your commitment to the success of the Housing Bureau for Seniors and this annual event. We sincerely hope you continue to your involvement with our efforts to make our community a healthier, happier place for seniors to live in.

Thank you.

Event Sponsor

Expo Sponsors

Workshop Sponsors


Caregiver Support                    Health Screenings                   Transportation 
         Sponsor                                      Sponsor                                 Sponsor


Thank you 2014 Senior Living Week Expo Vendors!

Adaptive Environments
American House
Ann Arbor Meals on Wheels
Area Agency on Aging 1-B
Ashford Court
Bassett & Associate, P.L.L.C.
Brookhaven Manor Apartments
Bureau of Services for Blind Persons
Care Response Home Health
Comfort Keepers
Jayna Eckler Real Estate
Encore Online Resale
Ester Guest Home
Evangelical Homes of Michigan
Fairfax Manor
Four Paws Veterinary Wellness
Gilbert Residence
Glacier Hills Senior Living Community
Henry Ford Village Senior Living
Hillside Terrace
Home Instead Senior Care
Horizons Planning Corporation
Hospice Compassus
Hospice of Michigan
Housing Bureau for Seniors
Huron Valley Ambulance
Huron Valley PACE
Jewish Family Services of Washtenaw
Kennedy Care
LeafFilter Gutter Protection
Legacy Assisted Living Center
Legacy Law Center
Lexington Club at Ann Arbor
Linden Square Assisted Living Center
Lurie Terrace Apartments
Michigan Department of Attorney General – Senior Brigade
Michigan Otolaryngology Surgery Associates
Mitchell Home Medical
Muehlig Funeral Chapel & Hosmer Muehlig Funeral Chapel
National Home Care
Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at UofM
Professional Resource Alliance of Greater Michigan
Regency at Bluffs Park
Sanctuary at St. Joseph’s Village
Senior Helpers
Silver Maples of Chelsea
Social Security Administration
Towne Centre Place
United Methodist Retirement Communities
University Living
UM Geriatrics Center
University of Michigan Health System
Visiting Angels
WellsBrooke Premium Home Health Care

Are You Ready?

ValDeskFlat-1_edited-2It’s time for Senior Living Week 2014 and this year there is more information and resources to offer our community than ever before! Thanks largely to the due diligence of the Housing Bureau for Seniors, this year’s offerings are a reflection of community feedback through the years about what our residents and families need. Care Response Home Care began participating in 2006 and can speak to the progressive event changes keeping pace with community needs. We are honored to be this year’s Event Sponsor, knowing there is something for everyone and admission is free!

Aging in Ann Arbor continues to make headlines. From the 2008 AARP ranking of the healthiest U.S. City for retirement, to the 2012 report released by the Milken Institute citing Ann Arbor among a number of cities for the community support of their aging population. Encouraging factors include public transportation, strong health care systems, wellness, and living arrangements. Also mentioned were financial well-being, employment, community engagement, multiple universities, education, and overall learning environment. It would appear the country is catching up with what we have always known!

Planning for retirement can be overwhelming, so gathering information from multiple sources is a great place to start. There are several considerations including financial, lifestyle preferences, and ultimately the health and well-being of you or your loved one. Using this ‘three legged stool’ approach, you begin to paint a unique picture for planning.

My experience helping clients and families determine their unique picture usually begins with lifestyle preferences which makes sense as we know where and how we want to live. Having a financial and healthcare overview is often not as clear but there are professionals who can help you navigate these sometimes complex pathways. As a certified Geriatric Care Manager, I have a duty and an obligation to those I serve to stay current with the new retirement frontier. The good news is we have many options here in Ann Arbor; the perhaps less than good news is there is an overwhelming amount of particulars to sift through to arrive at an informed decision!

Elder law attorneys, estate planning specialists, assisted living facilities, respite care, home medical equipment companies, organization and downsizing experts, and geriatric nursing services are a few of the resources available during Senior Living Week. If your preference is socializing and an array of activity choices, you may want to learn more about retirement communities and downsizing. If your preference is to safely age in place in your home, you may want to learn more about private duty care, home healthcare services, and home modification services available in Washtenaw County. If you are just beginning your quest and have limited time, you may want to attend the Expo and gather all pertinent information available. The Expo, Health Screenings, Workshops, and Open Houses really do offer something for everyone. There is a lot to see and do so take advantage of this annual opportunity. Planning for retirement and long term care can be challenging but you don’t have to navigate it alone.

Care Response Home Care has provided individualized private duty services and dementia care in and around Ann Arbor for more than 10 years. Owned and managed by Registered Nurses, we are proud to now offer certified Geriatric Care Management services. Our experienced nurses foster informed decision making by identifying risks and helping clients make smart home health care choices. We strive to respectfully and compassionately meet the needs of our clients and their families, by listening, planning, educating and delivering the highest standard of individualized care. Our goal is to offer dependable client-centered home care services, one client and one family at a time. We want to thank the Housing Bureau for Seniors once again for the opportunity to serve our community and look forward to this promising event. We look forward to seeing you there!

–Valerie Dockter

Community Programs & Services – 2013 Accomplishments

“Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome.”

Booker T. Washington

It’s the beginning of a new season. As I reflect on our previous seasons, that combined to create our first year, I am amazed at what we accomplished. FY2013 was one of the most challenging times in my 25 year tenure with UMHS. We came to the table optimistic but determined to do our part to address the financial deficit within the health system; working together to create OUR plan.

Despite the challenges, we accomplished some amazing tasks that support our health system and our community, both internally and externally.

Accommodations Program

– We made 11,574 reservations for patients, families and visitors to UMHS via the Patient and Visitor Hotel Accommodations Program – that’s an average of 965 reservations per month! The onsite Med Inn Hotel averaged 100% occupancy for 12 months. And, we launched our partnership with the Ann Arbor Mennonite Guest Home – a six year project to bring additional lodging to our patients and their families.

Adolescent Health Initiative

– Lauren Ranalli, Director of the Regional Alliance for Healthy Schools (RAHS), was successfully hired as Director of the Adolescent Health Initiative and we received a grant from MDCH to hire a program manager. Physician Adolescent Champions have been identified and with medical director, Maggie Riley, MD (Family Medicine) we are firmly on our way to doing great work. Planning for the first state-wide conference on adolescent health in Michigan is, also, underway for April 2014. The conference will focus on translating knowledge on working with adolescents to practice.

Ann Arbor Meals on Wheels

– We marked 2 million meals served (since the late 1980’s) with a celebration and open house in January 2013 that recognized our staff, volunteers, donors and funders for support for nearly 40 years. Our annual volunteer-driven golf fundraising event, The Judy Fike Golf Outing to benefit Ann Arbor Meals on Wheels, raised over $25,000 this year which will be used to provide meals to area homebound seniors and others.

Comprehensive Gender Services Program

– The Gender Program saw the largest increase in new client enrollment for calendar year 2012 with 108 new clients (a 40% increase our previous high of 43 new patients in 2007) since the program’s inception in 1995. (Notably, that growth shows no sign of slowing, as the program has enrolled 158 new patients to date in 2013.) In addition, the program created two support groups: one for the parents and guardians of gender-variant children, and the second for spouses and partners of transgender adults. The program also increased its ties with the Disorders of Sexual Development clinic and maintains a strong connection to Family Medicine, Plastic Surgery, Urology and Reproductive Endocrinology in providing support for our clients. The first gender variant youth and sibling event will be held at CPS in October in direct response to the increasing needs of this special population. The UMHS-CGSP is the only university-based, multidisciplinary gender program in the United States.

Friends Gift Shops

– Provided over $200,000 in grants to support patients and family programs within the health system (this includes $150,000 in core awards given to support Child & Family Life, Social Work Guest Assistance Program (GAP), Trails Edge Vent Camp (for ventilator dependent children) and the Patient Education Advisory Committee). Some of the other awardees for FY2013 include the East Ann Arbor Surgical Center, Adult Medical Observation Unit, Transplant House, the Brandon NICU, the Depression Center and Canton Radiology.

Housing Bureau for Seniors

– Celebrated 30 years of serving area seniors and their families. The yearly conference, Senior Living Week that provides education and information about aging in place, resources to support housing transitions and contact with experts in the field of housing and aging support celebrated its 15th anniversary. One of the highlights of HBS, our HomeShare Program is the only official program of its kind in the state of Michigan and has proven demonstrably effective in the community as an alternative method for allowing seniors to remain in their home.

Interpreter Services

– Launch of two innovative new classes – Interpreting in Palliative Care and Interpreting in Mental Health, both new classes are the one of the firsts trainings of their kind offered nationally. In addition to these two new courses, we successfully offered professional trainings classes for Bridging the Gap, Medical Terminology and Body Systems and Foundations for Medical Interpreter (formerly Medical Interpreting – Basic Skills ASL). These course offerings make our program a standout for promoting medical interpreting as a profession. The next step on our journey is the accreditation of our training program.

Program for Multicultural Health

– Partnered with the brothers of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. to present a successful African-American Men’s Health Symposium with significant contributions from Dr. Ken Jamerson, Frederick G L Huetwell Collegiate Professor of Cardiovascular Medicine and Professor of Internal Medicine (former medical director, Program for Multicultural Health), Brian Frey, UM School of Public Health Intern, Community Programs and Services, and Dr. Rohan Jeremiah, Paul D. Cornely Postdoctoral Scholar, UM School of Public Health. This symposium was Phase I of our partnership with Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. The symposium had barely closed before discussions began for Phase II — a Midwest regional symposium in 2014. The symposium also provided an opportunity to create an African-American Male Community Health Advocate group for the community. We are excited to train men how to educate other men on health issues (e.g. Hypertension, Diabetes, and Prostate Cancer) that are disproportionately experienced by African-American men.

– We enjoyed a successful summer teaching over 40 children (between the ages of 5 and 12) about nutrition. The children, summer camp participants at either the Parkridge Community Center in Ypsilanti, MI or Peace Neighborhood Center in Ann Arbor, MI learned about healthy eating, made health snacks, and participated in “taste-testing” vegetables and fruits not normally a part of their diet. (‎)

Regional Alliance for Healthy Schools

– We experienced a period of transition within our program. Jennifer Salerno, the long-term director and visionary for RAHS left to pursue other endeavors. Lauren Ranalli, MPH, was hired to take her place at the helm. Lauren hit the ground running in March; working to successfully manage the challenges created by the merger of two school-districts. Economic challenges for both Ypsilanti Public Schools and Willow Run Community Schools districts drove a merger which had the potential to affect three (3) of our school-based health centers. Following the merger, we efficiently closed the Ypsilanti Middle School health center and moved those services to the Lincoln Middle School. This move expanded services in the school district and provided support for our Lincoln High School school-based health center. We were the award recipient of nearly $400,000 from HRSA to improve the Ypsilanti High School Health Center. The award will allow us to renovate our clinic space to provide more privacy and efficient flow for students visiting the school-based health center.

– Developing the next generation of “leaders and best,” staff and students attended “Advocacy Day” (students, accompanied by RAHS staff, visited Michigan State Legislators to garner support for school-based health centers) in Lansing and participated in Project VOICE on the UM Flint campus.

Volunteer Services

– Reorganized and streamlined volunteer training and orientation sessions successfully. Created a process to efficiently onboard non-student volunteers (retirees, stay-at-home parents, and others). Allowing equal access to community volunteers to support our patients, their families, faculty, and staff. But more importantly, we continue to average close to 2,000 volunteers providing support to our institution.

This is, by no means, an exhaustive list of our many accomplishments during FY13. I would still be writing!! Instead, this is just a sample of the excellent support we provide to the University of Michigan Health System and our patients, their families and friends and the community. We are a valuable resource. We will continue to flourish to provide quality and consistent energy and passion in support of the vision, mission and goals of the health system.

The best is, truly, yet to come!


Alfreda Rooks

“Success in any endeavor does not happen by accident. Rather, it’s the result of deliberate  decisions, conscious effort, and immense persistence…all directed at specific goals.”

-Gary Ryan Blair


World Elder Abuse Awareness Day 2013

MLibrary Healthy Communities


June 15th marks the 7th annual World Elder Abuse Awareness Day.

The purpose of WEAAD is to provide an opportunity for communities around the world to promote a better understanding of abuse and neglect of older persons by raising awareness of the cultural, social, economic and demographic processes affecting elder abuse and neglect. In addition, WEAAD is in support of the United Nations International Plan of Action acknowledging the significance of elder abuse as a public health and human rights issue. WEAAD serves as a call-to-action for individuals, organizations, and communities to raise awareness about elder abuse, neglect, and exploitation. –Administration on Aging

How can I get involved?


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Linden Square Assisted Living Center – Online and Social

What’s the first thing you do when you are looking to buy something? Head straight for the keyboard and Google it, Facebook it, or ask your friends, relatives and coworkers for recommendations. Why? Even if it’s something we’re somewhat familiar with, we want to know what to expect, and what people are saying about that product or service.

The Internet continues to be a vast collection of information about anything you would ever want to know. Furthermore, caregivers use the web to find information on care options and resources, and to connect with other people who have had, or are dealing with, similar experiences for support.

The past several years of research results indicate that caregivers are using the Internet for information more so than any other group. Pew Internet’s latest survey shows that 8 out of 10 caregivers have access to the Web, and 90 percent of those with Internet access use it to find health information for someone other than themselves.

Are you a caregiver searching the web for a beautiful, new, caring, and premier assisted living center for a loved one? Don’t look any further; Linden Square Assisted Living Center is currently under construction at 650 Woodland Dr. E, in Saline. We are a sponsor of the UMHS Housing Bureau for Seniors annual event, Senior Living Week. Stop by the Senior Living Week Expo at the Morris Lawrence Building on Washtenaw Community College’s campus on Friday, May 10th between 8:30am – 3:00pm. Or, if you can’t make it to the Expo, we will be hosting a workshop at our new facility on Tuesday, May 14th from 10:30am – 12:00pm.

Want to know more about Linden Square? Visit us at, follow us on Facebook, or watch our virtual tour from a sister community, in Grand Haven, MI, Grand Pines Assisted Living Center.

I Need Short-Term Rehabilitation…Now What?

Post supplied by: Steve Hopkins, Vice President Wellness & Home Based Solutions, Evangelical Homes of Michigan

Many of us could have thought of this question as we were faced with this stage of healthcare. After a hospital stay or visit, the need for additional services such as short term rehabilitation and/or nursing services may be needed in order to fully recover.

Your situation could be due to a short illness, injury, or a planned surgery. Whatever the case, navigating and understanding short-term rehabilitation can still be a challenge. Listed below are a few key thoughts that you can inquire about to help make this process a bit smoother.

treadmillFirst, understand the transition from the hospital stay or visit to the next setting. Understanding what types of services will be needed for you or your loved one in order to make a full recovery is imperative. Your physician will make recommendations and next steps. Upon that recommendation, a hospital social worker will provide you with a list of resources and options available in your immediate area. After hospital discharge (if there was a stay) often there is transition to a short-term sub-acute rehabilitation facility. After this, there likely would be a recommendation for therapy and nursing to continue at home when you are able to return there safely. And then after home therapy discharges, there are a few providers that even offer continued wellness and healthy living opportunities to fully complete your recovery.

Another key component is identifying providers who can offer all of these services. The poolimportant fact here is that you have many options and can decide what is best for you or your loved one. The challenge is that you may not know your provider choices, your provider’s capability, the quality of the provider, or if they have a record of excellent customer service. Asking your doctor, as well as family and friends for recommendations is important. They can speak from many perspectives such as from a clinical quality perspective, as well as from a customer service side. Some quick hands-on research may be necessary too. It’s always good to visit a facility and see it with your own eyes, if time allows. If an onsite visit is not an option, visiting websites helps too (many times facilities will have virtual tours and photos available) so that you can view the facility from a distance. In your research it is important to ask questions like:

  • Does your organization provide all of the services I need through my entire transition?” Ask for a full list of services so that you have a reference in the future.
  • How can I see if your facility is comfortable and modern or institutional?” If you cannot visit in person ask if a virtual tour or photos are available on their website.
  • What types of therapy or short-term rehabilitation services are available?” Are physical, occupational, speech and aquatic therapy available? Will they have outpatient rehabilitation services available for you after you discharge from the facility. Continuing outpatient services is a great way for you to continue working on your recovery with the same team of therapists and in familiar surroundings.
  • Will a company representative like a transition manager or nurse visit me in the hospital before my discharge?” Often times organizations have specialized team members such as transition managers and/or clinical liaison’s to visit with you at the hospital. They can be instrumental in sharing treatment and outcome information between the hospital and the facility, as well as providing you with information about what to expect and the process of your recovery at the facility.
  • Will your team communicate directly with my doctor through each stage so they know what is going on with me?” Ask them to elaborate on how information about your progress will be shared with your physician.
  • How long will I need to be at the facility?” Many facilities will refer to a length of stay (LOS) and can usually report their average performance for different diagnoses.
  • Are your performance results (improvement measures and re-hospitalization) readily accessible to me?” Depending on the type of license the facility has, you can visit for information on the facility’s latest state level survey; often times facilities also publish annual quality scores as well.
  • Will my insurance cover my entire stay, will I have any out-of-pocket costs?” Often times there are gaps in insurance coverage, including Medicare, and it’s important to know what you will be responsible for up front.

These questions may seem basic, but the answers can start to put a picture together about what will happen once you are admitted into a short-term rehabilitation facility. Connecting with a provider that you know will support you through every stage of rehabilitation is something you deserve but something you may need to request.

There are many great resources available in our local community. Learn more about many of these community resources at the upcoming Housing Bureau for Seniors Expo on Friday, May 10, 2013. Many local organizations will have exhibits and expert staff on hand to provide you with information and resources. You will have the opportunity to hear more about ALL of the available rehabilitation options, stages, and facts that you need to know in order to be prepared to quickly receive the care you need and to return home healthy!