Attorney With The Hale Law Firm Remarks On Safer Homes For Seniors
Waxahachie, TX (Law Firm Newswire) September 9, 2013 – Homes may need modifications to be made safe for seniors, says a prominent elder law attorney.
Many older people prefer “aging in place,” staying in their homes, rather than moving to an assisted living facility. Staying in one’s home is more comfortable for most seniors and makes economic sense as well, since the cost of assisted living facilities is rising. However, there are changes seniors may want to make in order to make their home safer, according to John Hale, an elder law attorney based in the Dallas, Texas area.
“Home naturally feels safe,” said Hale. “But as people age, it is important to know that changes may need to be made in one’s home to keep it safe.”
Older people may have difficulty walking up and down stairs or getting in and out of chairs, and they may be at increased risk for accidents, such as burning themselves on a hot stove or slipping in the bathtub.
The first thing to do is take stock of the potential dangers in a senior’s home. The Home Safety Council has a website, MySafeHome.net, that points out potential hazards. Sometimes simple changes can help a lot, but they are not always obvious. The Safety Council recommends changes like installing brighter light bulbs and removing area rugs.
An elder with multiple health issues may benefit from having an occupational therapist visit the home to analyze potential problems and recommend modifications specific to the situation. Once the needs have been identified, the occupational therapist can write a plan for a contractor to follow. Modifications may include grab bars in bathrooms, threshold ramps at doorways or raising the height of chairs to make them easier to get out of.
Of course, cost is a concern for most seniors. If someone has long-term care insurance, their policy may pay for modifications, if the need for them is properly documented. A home equity loan or reverse mortgage are other options that can help pay for substantial modifications.
“Most seniors find living at home to be the preferable option,” said Hale. “Take care to make sure it’s a safe option, as well.”
The Hale Law Firm
100 Executive Court, Suite 3
Waxahachie, TX 75165
The Hale Law Firm
4925 Greenville Avenue #200
Dallas, TX 75206
View Larger Map
- What You Can Do During Medicare Open Enrollment
Medicare open enrollment runs through December 7, and it is a good time for beneficiaries to make sure they are satisfied with their Medicare Part D prescription drug coverage. During open enrollment, people on Medicare can shop around for Part D plans and the optional Medicare Advantage plans. If a beneficiary’s health or prescriptions for medication have changed in the past year, then it might be a good idea to compare plans. It also may be that the plan itself is what has changed: many plans have increased premiums or copayments or changed the pricing tiers for prescription medication. If [...]
- Texas Leads Nation in Construction of Senior Housing
There are more senior housing units under construction in Texas than anywhere else in the country, according to a research report from Marcus & Millichap, a real estate investment services firm. There are currently more than 2,000 units of senior housing being built in Texas. Thirteen states, including Minnesota, Florida and Tennessee, have more than 1,000 but fewer than 2,000 units under construction. The firm’s report said that the construction was driven by demand, particularly for dementia care. About 40 percent of people over the age of 85 have Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia, and the over-85 population is expected [...]
- Texas Scores Poorly in Nursing Home Care
Families for Better Care, a nonprofit group that advocates for better nursing home care, has released its first state-by-state nursing home report card, which ranks all 50 states and the District of Columbia according to quality of care. Unfortunately for Texas residents seeking nursing home care, the state ranked last in the report, with an F grade. To compile the information used in the report cards, the group used performance data from the Nursing Home Compare program of the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Kaiser Health Foundation performance information, and complaint data provided by each state’s Office of the [...]
- Thieves and Scammers Target Elders
An alarming number of scams and thefts target elders. One type of scam takes advantage of the public’s confusion over changes in health insurance. Someone perpetrating this type of fraud may call a senior and say that new Medicare cards are being issued and they just need to verify some personal information. A similar trick is for callers to say they are IRS agents. The goal is to obtain personal details such as Social Security numbers, which can be used to set up credit cards or loans in victims’ names, or claim their income tax refunds. Seniors may be targeted [...]
- Copper May Play a Role in Alzheimer’s Disease
New research indicates that copper found in drinking water, foods and vitamin supplements may play a role in the buildup of proteins and inflammation of the brain that are associated with Alzheimer’s disease. Copper is necessary for bone and tissue growth, hormone secretion and nerve conduction, but the new research from the University of Rochester Medical Center suggests that too much copper has negative effects on human health. The research was published in the journal PNAS. The research found that copper, even in amounts that are common and allowable by the FDA, can affect the barrier that keeps toxins from [...]