Adult day services available now through Perham Living
A new option is available in the area for caregivers of adults who need supervision. The Adult Day Services Program at Perham Living opened on March 30 as part of the health campus's service offerings. "We started seeing a need for it with differ...
A new option is available in the area for caregivers of adults who need supervision.
The Adult Day Services Program at Perham Living opened on March 30 as part of the health campus's service offerings.
"We started seeing a need for it with different clients who we work with out in the community," said Katie Lundmark, vice president of long-term care, of the program. "As we did a little bit of research, we found out that there was no (nearby) service available."
In fact, there is not a similar program to care for adults in either Otter Tail or Wadena County.
Perham Living applied for and received a grant through the Department of Human Services to get the program started. The grant is intended to help create and provide enhanced services to older adults, with an end goal of helping them avoid moving to a nursing home setting for a while longer.
"For us, it's an extension of all these services that we're offering to allow people options and choice for the lowest level of care that they need," Lundmark said, referencing the past when a nursing home was the only option when individuals could no longer live alone.
Now there is home care, day services, assisted living apartments and a lot of other options, Lundmark said.
The adult day services program manager, Janet Severson, explained that they can accept clients age 18 and older, with a maximum capacity of 20 participants at a time.
Individuals with Alzheimer's, dementia, down syndrome and other conditions that require a higher level of care and attention were kept in mind when creating the program.
The day services area is housed in what used to be the lobby of the Perham Health, on Third St. SW. The space was renovated to add extra safety and security features for clients, along with cubby spaces and a quiet room for napping.
"We're here to give respite to the caregiver," Severson explained. "You bring your loved one here for the day so you can go do what you need to do."
As part of the Perham Living campus, clients have the option of participating in activities with nursing home residents. There are also games, baking activities and outings planned in addition to the noon meal and two snacks.
"They're not going to come here and be plopped in front of the TV all day," Severson said.
"I think that's a really important part of keeping someone healthy," Lundmark said of the interactions clients can have during their time in the program.
"I think the hardest part for people is, they feel guilty," Severson said of hurdles faced with getting individuals involved with the program. She said she understands that a caregiver may have feelings of failure or inadequacy when first asking for help.
"I think that the people who could be utilizing our services, once they get over that first hurdle, could really see the benefit," she said. "Accepting help is always hard."
While the program has a fairly flexible schedule Monday through Friday, it is not a drop-off type service.
Paperwork must be completed before a person can join the day services program. There are also some limitations on care that can be provided, which Severson can discuss with interested persons.
Caregivers interested in learning more about the Adult Day Services Program can reach Severson at (218) 347-1940.