One thing that these classic reruns teach is that its not good, nor healthy to lie, because it’ll always catch up to you. Getting older is the same way. No one is getting younger so its best to face the facts, make a plan and get back to your life. This is exactly what the Center for Positive Aging at St. Luke’s Warren Hospital helps patients do.

“The most common issues with aging are related with the body failing like a lack of mobility, loss of ability to complete daily living tasks and keeping the mind sharp,” says Anne Grogan, Director of Geriatric Services at the Center for Positive Aging. “Good overall health goes beyond the physical and includes the emotional, mental and social aspects of one’s life. The Center for Positive Aging recognizes this, and we have a team of geriatric specialists evaluate all these aspects of a patient’s life,” explains Grogan.

As part of the evaluation, there is a home visit, medical assessment, psychological screening for Alzheimer’s disease, a follow-up family conference, counseling and referrals, if necessary.

Grogan says that many people are concerned about keeping a sharp mind so the Center performs a comprehensive assessment including: memory assessment, depression screening, a cognitive and neurological exam and even look at a patient’s history.

Also a nurse practitioner and social worker do a home visit, perform a home safety check, review any of the patient’s medications, and interview family members. The results of these tests are organized and integrated in to a care plan for the patient.

Also she sees numerous families come in that are in search of help and a starting point to help them navigate a loved one’s aging issues. “We are very pro positive aging,” continues Grogan, “and we are here to help families. Anyone can stop in to ask a question or make an appointment for a consultation.”

While patients are most interested in the physical, social and mental aspects of the geriatric assessment, the Center for Positive Aging also helps patients with long range planning that may include evaluating moving, at-home services, dealing with caregiver stress, organizing legal documents like power of attorney.

Patients do not need a doctor’s prescription to for a geriatric assessment, and Medicare pays for it as well does many private insurances.

I asked Anne once more and she repeated, “Yes, people can just stop in and ask questions. We’ll try and answer their questions as best we can and provide them with resources.” Wow, that’s the way health care should be.

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