Nevada's #1 News Source for Senior Services and Community
Seeking Elder Services,
by Donna Clontz
In recent years, when community members are asked to name what's needed most to help local seniors live better lives, the most common request is making it easier for everyone to find and access available resources for seniors and their caregivers. We are fortunate in Washoe County that there are so many services and service providers at all price points that offer assistance for caregiving, food and nutrition programs, healthcare, medical equipment, housing, senior living and care homes, home modification, legal services, recreation and social programs, transportation and much more. But, the big problem is that many seniors and caregivers don't know where to look or who to ask when they need help in finding and choosing the services they need. Here are a few tips that may help you find the resources you need.
For a start, either go online or call to get copies of a few of the many excellent free resource guides either online or in print. Some of the best guides that are updated regularly are:
• Senior Spectrum's Golden Pages at www.seniorspectrumnewspaper.com, (775) 348-0717. Senior Spectrum does not mail Golden Pages, but they can be found at Washoe County Senior services.
• The Community Foundation of Western Nevada's new Washoe Caregivers website and guidebook at www.washoecaregivers.org (775) 333-5499
Perhaps, after reading through these guides, researching online data and making a few phone calls, you have gathered enough information to choose the appropriate resources to meet your needs. But, if you need more assistance, the next step would be to find an expert to talk with.
For general social services, such as Meals on Wheels, food distribution programs, homemaker assistance, and case management, you can call or visit with a social worker at the Washoe County Senior Center at 1155 E. 9th Street in Reno.
For legal help, contact the Washoe County Senior Law Project, located at the 9th Street Senior Center. www.nlslaw.net (775) 334-3050. The staff provides free legal services to Washoe County residents aged 60+ to help with housing issues, Food Stamps, Social Security benefits, simple wills, advance directives and other legal issues.
For questions about Medicare, contact a volunteer SHIP counselor at the 9th Street Senior Center 1 (877) 385-2345 or at (775) 284-8989. For advice on medical equipment and supplies, contact Care Chest of the Sierra at www.carechest.org or (775) 829-8575. For help with modifying your home to make it safer for an elder, contact The Continuum at www.continuumreno.com or (775) 829-4700.
Another way to get free expert help in choosing resources is to contact Solutions and Associates, SARA, a nonprofit collaborative of specialized healthcare and life service professionals. They maintain a website at www.asksara.org with an online information request area, and have a 24-hour telephone hotline at (775) 742-3288. SARA guarantees to respond to your request for information within 24 hours.
Finally, you can contact the Senior Health Advocate program at the Center for Healthy Aging email@example.com (775) 237-8375 to get resource information or to set up a meeting with a trained volunteer to answer your questions to help you make the best choice.