Entries for 2015

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What Families Should Know About: Exceptional Resources

 Posted by Denise DeRousse on April 5, 2015 at 8:00 AM

What Families Should Know About: Exceptional Resources

Without a comprehensive plan, families often have to scramble to identify and qualify the various resources needed to manage an entire home transition. They must locate and hire trusted realtors, movers, downsizing experts, estate sale professionals, consignment shops, packing  material suppliers, junk haulers or dumpster companies, housekeepers, repairmen, home stagers, financial advisors,  attorneys, caregivers, pet sitters, and more!

On the other hand, when families work with a “total solution” organization like Caring Transitions®, they need search no further.  As the comprehensive plan is developed, all resources are identified and included in project communications. And while no company can guarantee another company’s service, all professional partners are vetted and deemed reliable.

Caring Transitions® has taken additional steps to train and screen every employee and has developed estate sale standards that far exceed the rest of the industry. Since many of our clients are older adults moving to assisted living communities, every Caring Transitions® office is also independently certified to support a “senior move” and help mitigate the effects of stress, health and cognitive issues which are common to late life relocations.

In today’s world, however, it is often the technological advances that make a company truly exceptional.  And within the senior relocation and home transition industry, Caring Transitions® is that company.  Caring Transitions® is the only national service provider that offers an in-house online auction platform, as well as electronic estimates for every project, whether that includes sorting, downsizing, organizing, packing, unpacking, pricing, photographing, merchandising, managing a sale, or all of the above.

 

©Caring Transitions 2015. Not for reprint in part or entirety.

What Families Should Know About: Relocation Support

 Posted by Denise DeRousse on April 2, 2015 at 8:00 AM

What Families Should Know About:  Relocation Support

Truly comprehensive relocation solutions look and feel similar to corporate “relo” services.  Think of how a corporation helps support a valued executive. They provide resources, information and services begins well before moving day. Some of the principles that “relo” companies use to govern large projects include:

  1. Planning and logistical arrangements
  2. Use of technology  to promote the exchange of information
  3. Education for the client and their families
  4. Assessment of client goals and preferences
  5. Follow up
  6. Service, standards, measurements and reporting

In much the same way, Caring Transitions® is your personal “relo” company. We provide all the necessary labor, information and services to plan a relocation, evaluate costs, organize, pack, unpack and provide move management and oversight, from start to finish. We also offer in-house professional liquidation services including estate sale, donations and online auction. Professionally licensed services such as transporting household goods and selling real estate are outsourced to vetted partners, and those resources are often managed by your Caring Transitions® team.

As the nation’s largest professional resource for residential relocation, we also have offices in most major markets to help manage your long distance transitions.

©Caring Transitions 2015. Not for reprint in part or entirety.

 

 

What Families Should Know About: Asset Management

 Posted by Denise DeRousse on March 31, 2015 at 4:33 PM

What Families Should Know About: Asset Management

Few if any home transitions occur without changing the volume of personal possessions, or personal assets. Moving to a larger house typically triggers an increase in personal property and moving to a smaller one typically generates a decrease.

Increasing the quantity of personal possessions is fairly simple and “shopping” is the usual solution. Downsizing, or decreasing property, can be a bit more challenging. Today there are many options for reducing the volume of one’s tangible assets. Families may opt for a garage sale, tag sale, yard sale, estate sale, auction, online auction, whole house liquidation, junk removal, charitable donation or they may choose to give items as gifts or inheritances.

Based on national experience, Caring Transitions® knows it is important for families to take the time to evaluate their goals when downsizing and decluttering. It is also critical to hire the most vetted and qualified resources who understand and are sensitive to sentimental attachments, schedules and budgets. There are a number of liquidation options and one may in fact be better than another, depending on the value of inventory to be sold, personal timetables, a pending home sale or any number of other factors. In addition, the liquidation industry is not well regulated and families who hire unreliable resources or those who don’t understand the financial nuances of the business may fall victim to thieves and scam artists.

©Caring Transitions 2015. Not for reprint in part or entirety.

Tips for Transitioning Senior with Cognitive Disorders

 Posted by Denise DeRousse on March 2, 2015 at 1:01 PM

Tips for Transitioning Senior with Cognitive Disorders

By Chris Seman, President, Caring Transitions (as seen on The Caregiver’s Voice)

There comes a time when our elder loved ones need to consider a home transition–whether it’s relocating to a smaller home or downsizing to an independent assisted living community. Late-life transitions are often perceived as a negative aspect of aging and can be rather stressful on relocating seniors and their loved ones.

Transitioning seniors experiencing cognitive disorders, such as dementia or Alzheimer’s, will experience even greater stress than those without an illness. This is because removing a person with dementia or Alzheimer’s from a familiar place can cause feelings of disorientation and confusion.

In general, our homes are our most recognized places. As the caregivers of seniors in transition, especially those with cognitive disorders, it’s important to understand how moving or making a major change to a home environment can cause seniors to lose not only their sense of place, but also their sense of self.

By following the tips below, caregivers can make the transitioning process easier for their loved one and for themselves.

  1. Reinstate a sense of control.
    People often experience stress when they feel things are out of control.
    Caregivers can lessen the stress of transitioning by reinstating a sense of order and control to the events their loved ones find stressful. Offering choices helps the senior maintain his/her sense of self in the midst of chaos.
    It’s important to understand that when we remove someone’s ability to make decisions on his or her own behalf, we also remove an essential practice that would otherwise help a senior maintain a sense of control over unfamiliar situations.
  1. Give seniors a voice.
    With cognitive issues present, it becomes difficult for older adults to voice their fears and opinions.
    Caregivers can give their loved one a voice by offering a few simple options with outcomes that are always acceptable.
    For example, asking something as simple as, “Would you like to explore three assisted living communities or just two?” presents an outcome favorable to both parties, while allowing the older adult to make his/her voice heard.
    When caregivers present options for discussion, their loved one develops a sense of being important to the relocation process.
  1. Use outside resources.
    Caregivers and their elders should not feel they have to handle every detail of a late-life transition, alone.
    Using dedicated professional resources helps relieve the stress of dealing with the nitty gritty details of relocating and instead, allows caregivers to focus on their loved ones. For instance, Caring Transitions gives families peace of mind by managing and supporting transitions; initially, with sorting personal belongings, and then packing, shipping, and selling items to the final clearing and cleaning of the property.
  1. Practice “Mirror Placement™.”
    As seniors settle into a new home or an assisted living community, it’s important to help them maintain or regain their sense of place as well as their sense of self.
    Surrounding loved ones with familiar things helps them to assimilate to a new environment more quickly. Caregivers can create familiarity by practicing “Mirror Placement™,” thus duplicating the furniture arrangement and location of objects to mimic that of the original home setting. Caring Transitions uses specially designed technology to ensure their new space is mirrored as closely as possible.

By establishing processes where transitioning seniors, even those living with dementia or Alzheimer’s,  can express their concerns, regain some control and focus on the road ahead, caregivers can help their loved ones and themselves turn a late-life home transition into a meaningful life experience with less stress and more positive outcomes.

Care Transitions and Caring Transitions®

 Posted by Denise DeRousse on February 4, 2015 at 6:30 PM

Care Transitions and Caring Transitions®

By Nan Hayes

Individuals with chronic health conditions often require a variety of care services provided by multiple practitioners. Typically, each provider of services operates in a unique setting. For instance, as a patient’s needs change, they may transfer from their home setting to a hospital, then from hospital to a rehabilitation center or nursing facility, then perhaps return home where they receive additional care. The patient may also schedule office visits with primary care and specialty care physicians.

Each of these changes in practitioner or healthcare setting is called a “Care Transition.”  Traditionally, providers in each of the care settings operate individually, with little or no knowledge of what services or information was given to the patient by any of the other providers. Among providers it is known that poorly managed transitions can diminish health and increase healthcare costs. The lack of coordination among care services may also lead to poor clinical outcomes, dissatisfaction by patients and their families and even readmissions to the hospital.

According to the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS) nearly one in five Medicare patients discharged from a hospital, or 2.6 million seniors, are readmitted within 30 days, at a cost of over $26 billion every year. Clearly this indicates room for improvement in care transitions. In addition to readmission, patients may suffer other complications due to unclear discharge instructions, conflicting instructions from different providers and medication errors, such as dangerous drug interactions or overdose due to duplication of prescriptions.

On the other hand, when care transitions are managed optimally, quality of care is increased and readmission of a patient can be reduced. According to the American Geriatrics Society, good transitional care is based on a comprehensive plan of care, as well as the availability of health care practitioners who are trained in chronic care and have current information about the patient’s goals, preferences, and clinical status.

Good transitional care will also include these 6 principles:

  1. Planning and logistical arrangements
  2. Use of technology to promote the exchange of information
  3. Education for the patients, their families and caregivers
  4. Support assessments and service referrals
  5. Patient follow up
  6. Performance standards, measurements and reporting

At Caring Transitions®, we understand the value of these care transition principles and apply them to other areas of late life transition, such as “home transition.”   While clearly different from health transitions, “home transitions” encompass the changes to an individual’s living environment. In later life, home transitions typically include a move from the family residence to an assisted living community, nursing care or a rehabilitation center.  Additional changes to home environment may include downsizing, decluttering or modification to an existing residence to improve comfort and safety.  And lastly, a home transition may be the transfer of an estate to a trustee, who is then responsible for the management or liquidation of the estate.  In all cases, Caring Transitions® provides the necessary transitional planning and services to help assure the best possible outcomes for the client.

Please join our blog and newsletter over upcoming weeks as we explain “What Families Should Know” when it comes to transition services and standards.

©Caring Transitions 2015. No reprint in part or entirety without permission.

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