Welcome to senior talk. Senior talk is where you can find the most useful information, tips and resources when it comes to senior care. Senior talk is brought you by Nestle senior placement and care solutions. Nasbe help you or your loved one find the most suitable, assisted living boarding care, memory care, independent living or senior apartments. Nasbe is an East Bay based sell the Angele Bays, senior placement company. You can find more information about them on nes. V E s t v as Victor. Why was the yellow.com or you can call their number at (510) 626-7744. Hi everyone. So this is senior talk. This is your host Nicole. She, I’m here with Michelle Pope, uh, the CEO of Alzheimer’s services of the East Bay. Thank you so much for being here with us. Michelle.
Thank you for having me.
Yeah, so your centers are doing amazing things where the um, East Bay community with, you know, people with Alzheimer’s. Um, can you tell us a little bit about your center?
Yeah. So Alzheimer’s services of the East Bay is a 30 year nonprofit that is licensed by the Department of Public Health to provide adult day health care services, community-based adult service. And what that means is that we are open Monday through Friday from nine to four. We have three centers, one in Berkeley, one in Hayward and one in Fremont so that we can serve all of Alameda County and what they do. Um, it’s a wonderful model because what it is is that that person gets to either stay at home, live in a boarding care, living in assisted living, but come out of those Assisted Living San Leandro environments into an environment on a daily basis, Monday through Friday where everyone in that environment has dementia, but they’re getting more specialized care. So it’s more one on one because we have a paid eight to one staff ratio. Um, we also are very experienced. We’ve never done anything but dementia and Alzheimer’s being the number one dementia.
And then we have physical therapy, occupational therapy, uh, uh, we have a life enrichment court they need or that is doing therapeutic activity through a Montessori model. We have dancing, we have a occupational therapist that works with the care givers, if that need be. Uh, we have a nurse here, so all the medical, um, uh, needs of that person are looked at medication management. We have social workers that are amazing, that can work with, uh, looking for resources in the community that are partnering with boarding cares and assistant livings to care for the loved ones that they’re caring for in their buildings. So we’re, I think we’re a very rich, uh, organization when it comes to services because we have been doing this for 30 years. So we kind of know what I’m the care partners need as well as the individual.
Yeah, that’s really amazing. And I know you guys also kind of constantly improving and learning more about this industry, this disease. And you mentioned that you partner with someone, some institute in Denmark.
Yes. Yes. So what we did is, um, is a couple of, about three or four years ago I learned about this model of care called Montessori aging and dementia Canada, Paris, England, other countries have adopted this model. And I thought, I wonder if this would work for adult day health care. So I got ahold of them and they put me in touch with a woman by the name of Jennifer Brush. She’s, I’m here in the states. And we began with the support of the lungs foundation. This journey that’s been over a year long to become a Montessori aging and dementia adult day health care. Um, I’m very excited that we will be the only one in the United States. And that’s a model that doesn’t, you know, traditionally what we do with our people who have Alzheimer’s and dementia, we want them to sit and we want to do to them. Montessori says engaged and, and, and allow them to be organic within their, um, within their Assisted Living San Leandro environment. And that lessens the anxiety, a fear of paranoia. And it keeps people feeling like they have a purpose. And so we adopted that. And so we’ll be certified, um, as of February 26th. So it’s very exciting. Very exciting. Thank you for asking about that. Yeah. So it’s through the Association for Montessori international out of the Netherlands.
Yeah. Well, this is the amazing news for the patient and the family and the caregivers. Yes. You know, everyone needs to learn especially more about this disease. There are so many, I like data or research coming out and it’s,
and as you and I talked offline, it’s also about this, you know, um, by 20, 21, just an Alameda county alone, we’re looking at a growth that’s two times the amount that we even have today. So if that is in fact true based on sort of the formula that we put to statistical data, then we really need to do more education within the community. What you’re doing is phenomenal because we need to educate the community, but we also need to link together. And I love what you’re doing because as providers, we need to become more of a one stop shop. Even though I may not own that assisted living, they may not own asap. We need to know about each other. So when families come in, they don’t have to keep searching because that’s what I think happens and what people have told me, there’s searching, searching, searching, and by the time they find a sab, sometimes it, you know, their loved one has suffered a little too much. And, um, and so I think your idea of making these linkages and providing information and data is phenomenal because we need it. We can’t do it on our own.
Yeah. And there’s a lot of amazing resources out there for the family. Yeah, exactly. Yeah, yeah, yeah. So can you give us a little bit like a profile, what kind of patients or clients will benefit from it?
Absolutely. So, um, again, as we, as we, you and I spoke off line, um, and thank you again for this opportunity. Um, uh, our youngest client or participant is 23 years old and the oldest is 102. So if you go back to that person that’s 20 [inaudible] up to about 45, those individuals have dementia, but it’s not, uh, it’s not all timers. So what they have is a dementia, which means memory loss. The inability to function with your cognition. A sequencing has gone, things of that nature from a variety of things. Motorcycle accidents, head injury, uh, a gentlemen, uh, from, uh, a bullet wound, um, football players. We have a couple of football players from the past when the helmets weren’t so great. And um, so all of those Assisted Living San Leandro individuals are also in our program. Then the people 65 and up are individuals who are probably living with um, uh, Alzheimer’s or stroke dementia or Parkinson’s dementia, Lewy bodies dementia.
So it’s a little different. But we have created a model where they actually all coexist in the same community together and it is a beautiful thing to watch. So I even say our programs are somewhat intergenerational because we have young adults all the way to the oldest old as you know, the new category 85 and up is oldest old. So we have some of those folks too. So we, we service everyone who provides. Okay. She just ran to the restroom. Okay. Um, we provide service for everyone that has that level of need and that level of, um, you know, as long as it’s dementia, as long as it’s coming to decline, we’re, we’re there for them.
Yeah. Because I’ve encountered some family there. Um, their loved one is much younger and maybe like trauma head injuries and they think, okay, this is not the same as Alzheimer’s dementia, but yeah, they can benefit from it.
Yes, they can. Yes, they can. And, and we actually, um, did some commercials, uh, in 2017 that Comcast did. Um, we partnered with Comcast spotlight and we got, again from the lawns foundation, they’ve been very great to us. And, and it was about that to show that dementia is not just Alzheimer’s. Dementia has, comes to people from varying different disease, diagnoses, head trauma. Um, and so we also have veterans in our program that are living with PTSD. Right. So, yeah. Yeah,
yeah. Um, so how can someone get started here?
So if someone is interested in enrolling or having their loved one enrolled into the program, we need a doctors, uh, sorta of his h and p history. Um, saying that physical, that this person does have some form of dementia so that we know what that form of dementia is. So that’s very important as well as it listing any of the medications that that individual may be on. We really like to know if that family member has insurance. So if they have met account Medicare, medicare, we don’t bill, but if they have met a cow, adult day health care, if there’s a portion that can pay for that, sometimes it’s a large a share of costs. And so we’re going to look and see what county that person lives in. Would they be better off signing up with Contra Costa health care plan or Alameda health care plan?
Do they were going to look at all of the varying a funding sources that might benefit that individual. And then if their insurance paid for it, we will set up a plan to either um, building insurance company ourselves or some of them require the family to pay. And then w uh, the family pays and then we, we send the forms out and then the family gets to get, be paid for it. And, and then they pay us. So it has to, you know, some insurance companies do it that way. Right. Where we’re willing to work with anyone and everyone to make sure that they get in. And we do have scholarships. So we do have relationships with family caregiver alliance and the Alzheimer’s Association where we can get small scholarships but that we can benefit those families. They have to pay privately. Yeah.
Great. So the family, the first step is then definitely reach out. We can reach out, uh,
um, reach out. We’ll, we’ll partner you with a social worker at whatever program that you call Berkeley, Hayward or Fremont. And that social worker will then that began you on this incredible journey to get all the resources you need. Get the loved one in the program. They have to come. Your loved one will have to come to a three day assessment where the medical team and the, the Idt team that we talked about earlier. Um, we’ll have to assess because we put together a care plan. You know, the one thing that you and I spoke about asap is not a place where, um, people are going to sit and just live the rest of their lives sitting, waiting for something to happen. We’re going to engage them and we’re going to be intentional about trying to find out who that person was intentional about who they are and keep them engaged. We have, uh, we have a computer virtual program that we’re using now where people, we can go into the forties and bring up images from the 46. I mean, so we, anything that we can do to keep people engaged so they’re not just sitting there and there’s not just that silence and it’s not just that Assisted Living San Leandro disconnection that dementia creates with the, they’re all still very capable people.
Yeah. That’s really amazing because a lot of, um, centers out there like adult daycare, they basically just kinda keep the dementia patients there and they don’t really have any like activities. So this is really good.
Yes, yes. And we, and we have an, and we’ll, I’ll tour you through, but we definitely have activities that are set up so that everybody’s engaged. But they also have choice.
Yeah. Because a lot of people leave. Okay. Someone has Alzheimer’s in mine has gone, there’s no life anymore. Right. But your program allows them to live. Right. That’s really,
and where they are now without, you know, and I’m not putting any family down, um, because I know that Alzheimer’s is a very difficult disease to have in your family. But because I didn’t know your family member the way you did prior to, I don’t have the same expectations. I’m not looking for them to be who they were. I’m just trying to figure out who they are, how we can connect with them, how we can make them smile, how they can feel engaged. I loved it. The other day a woman said to me, um, Saturday, she said, my mom comes home every day and she says that she helps making the salad. I said, she does, she helps to make the salad everyday for lunch. And she goes, you have no idea how happy that makes me feel. And so it is about being engaged. We don’t live to be elders just to sit in a chair and have people do stuff to us. We know. Yeah. That’s not, yeah.
Um, and for our listener, a lot of them, they’re our family loved ones there. They have someone in the assisted living and boarding care. And how can those residents or boarding care assisted living, how do they knew, collaborate with you? You’re a physician.
Yes. And um, and I love that question because if you’re a boarding care owner, I’m going to start there. We have relationships with some boarding cares. Um, the reality is that person is probably that board and care is probably being paid for by the family. And that person’s still has insurance. So they may have Alameda alliance, a cocktail costs the healthcare plan. They will pay for adult day services. So we can be the, the during the daycare so that person can come out of your board and care. You can staff down or too minimal and they can come to us from nine to four. We will engage them from nine to four every single day, Monday through Friday, and then come back there at the end of the day, I’m on our van. And then that way the staff doesn’t have to, you know, really try to worry about behaviors unless the person is a nocturnal wanderer. And we can help with that too. But the reality is that helps in the staffing. You know, I know a lot about assisted living and boarding care. If you can staff down that saves so much money, um, on a day to day basis. And if you have people with dementia, you definitely can benefit from having a partnership with us.
That’s great. Yeah. And the shall, before I last asked my last question, how do people find you?
Yeah. I mean, I wish they could find us every single time they got the diagnosis when we talked about that. Yeah. Um, and so thankful for our relationship. You know, it’s unfortunate that, um, right now in our medical a world that we’re not spoken about when the diagnosis happens, there’s very few social workers and case managers that know about adult day health care, community based adult services. So your service is so pivotal to getting that word out and, and, but you can find us. We have a website or Alzheimer’s services of the East Bay, you can call us at (510) 644-8292 and we’ll hook you up with the right. Um, social worker. The right site you can go to a life is a sacred journey, which is a our podcast and that has a link to us as well. Um, you can walk in off the street at 2120 Channing way in Berkeley. So all of those ways are, are how you can connect with us or you can email me at Michelle at [inaudible] dot org and I will make sure I connect you. Um, as long as you tell me who you are and what you’re emailing me for, cause I get so many emails. If you’re not specific, I can’t respond. Uh, so that’s how,
oh, that’s amazing. Yeah. And Michelle, please share three to most valuable resources you think a senior or their families should have. Yes. Yes.
The, I think one is, um, making sure that the family sit down and have a Assisted Living San Leandro conversation about what you want your life to look like. What’s your life plan? I use the five wishes here and it talks, it’s a longterm care, um, a document. If you have to have a longterm care document, let your families know what you want. What is it, board and care is it assisted living, you know, do your homework prior to the needs so that you can direct your family and loved ones so that when you need it and you may not be able to speak for yourself, that your wishes are number one, number one, number one. Number two is to make sure that you protect your assets. Um, you know, you want to protect your assets for your life and so find a trusting person, but you need two or three people so that no one person can do something with your assets, without consulting with another party because money changes all of us.
And it’s unfortunate, but it’s the reality. So those are the two protections I would put in place. And then three, because I’m selfish, I would hope that anybody who needed adult day healthcare would find us and began with us before they thought about going to assisted living or boarding care, keeping someone at home as long as they could. But then even when, during that transition, realizing that a good quality of life means engagement, it doesn’t mean sitting in a room until the day you died. And so, um, those are the, that’s my, the three things that I think are important. Thank you so much. Thank you for having me.