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A collection of articles on Home Safety for the Elderly and Seniors

Plan for Aging in the Place you Love – Your Safety

To successfully plan ahead, you need to start thinking about how you want to live as you age and what steps you need to take to achieve that lifestyle.

This article is part of a series on Plan for Aging in the Place you Love

Your Safety

Even though people of all ages experience fraud and abuse (including financial abuse), older adults may be particularly vulnerable.
There are many good sources of information available to help seniors learn to protect themselves from fraud and abuse.age in place plan for safety
Ask at your local library or seniors’ centre, or check online for further information.

  • Do I feel safe in my home and in my neighbourhood?
  • Do I know how to protect myself against fraud and abuse, including financial abuse?
  • Do I know what to do if I suspect abuse or if I am feeling abused?

Find other articles about Aging in Place click HERE

You can find more information and resources about Aging in Place at Canada.ca/Seniors

Teunis Schouten, Owner at B Cared For Services

Do you remember your medical history?

You or an elderly family member has just been diagnosed with a critical illness. You know that with Canada’s beleaguered health care system mistakes can be made. So, right from the get go you have decided to be proactive with your health care. A good step to take is to get a good system to monitor and track your overall health and illness. HealthNotes is a Langley company that provides a tracking system that is easy to use and designed to save time in doctor’s offices and medical care facilities.

HealthNotesSeniorSupportCareAidInformationHealthNotes has some steps to take if you find yourself overwhelmed by the amount of information coming your way. Conversely you may be frustrated by the lack of information you are receiving as well. In any case, the following tips could be very helpful.

  1. Find out everything you can about the health condition you are facing.
  2. When searching for health information online, look for sites that end in .org, .gov. or .edu. These are reputable sites with reliable information.
  3. Start collecting your health records.
  4. Make a list of questions and concerns before you visit the doctor or specialist. If necessary, schedule another meeting following your diagnosis.
  5. Make a list of your treatment options.
  6. Talk to other patients who have faced the same situation you are experiencing.
  7. Make a pro and con list of your treatment options and allow yourself time to make the decision. Remember your stress level will be high and your emotions will weigh in on this decision. But remember it is you who has the final say in your treatment

The information in this post is provided ‘as-is’. B Cared For does not endorse any specific company. We simply strive to provide you, the reader, with useful information and resources we think are relevant.

Lilianne Fuller, Relationship Manager at B Cared For Services

Are you prepared for an emergency?

Public Safety Canada and Emergency Services officials warn us that in the event of a natural disaster we need to be able to care for ourselves for up to 72 hours. For elderly people living on their own, it means they must be prepared to wait in their homes for either a rescue or the delivery of food and supplies.Emergency Response for Seniors

Public Safety Canada advises to know the risks of the area you live and to make a plan accordingly. In Langley, it is unlikely that we will have a wildfire situation, but we have been warned numerous times that ‘the BIG one is coming!’ Planning for an earthquake is far different than planning to outrun a wildfire.

If you have a disability or a loss of vision or hearing it is important that your plan be designed to help not only yourself but those who would come to your rescue. The following list will make things far simpler if the worst should happen.

  • If your vision is limited, you will need to make sure you have an extra long cane. This helps you to readily maneuver around debris on the floor or find furniture that may have shifted in earthquake.
  • Mark all emergency supplies in advance. Use fluorescent tape, large print or even Braille. For Braille labels contact your local branch of the CNIB.
  • Mark gas, water and electric shutoff valves in advance. Again, use fluorescent tape, large print or Braille labels. IMPORTANT If you DO NOT smell gas, DO NOT shut off your gas valve. This will delay getting your home operational after the disaster.
    Arrange to have the home’s water tank secured; this will provide a safe and potable water source.
    Familiarize yourself with your escape route and have a Plan B should one route be blocked.

If you have a seeing eye dog, plan for their evacuation as well.

  • Have a ‘Grab & Go’ kit for your dog. Review, replenish and discard items as needed.
  • Make sure your dog is tattooed or micro-chipped.
  • Most shelters will take working dogs, but make sure you have extra food on hand that you can bring along with you. The dog will possibly be as traumatized as you and thus will appreciate not having to tolerate a change in diet.

The above are simple steps to take in order to be able to remain in your home in the event of a disaster, comfortably, safely and most importantly, prepared.
Lilianne Fuller, Relationship Manager at B Cared For Services

Elder Care – Beware of wolves in sheep’s clothing – Part 4

Last week we talked about two scams that operated over the telephone. In those cases a senior can simply hang up but what happens when someone arrives at the elderly person’s home. Often a scammer will present themself as a public utility inspector or a even a person in need. The homeowner will receive a knock on the front door and be confronted by two people. They identify themselves as

Home Support Senior victim of door scams

inspectors for the utility or gas company. They ask for entry into the senior’s home and often they will flash an ID card very quickly. So quickly that the senior will barely have time to read it. Once inside, one person will ask to be directed to the gas meter or the electrical panel and the other person will ask to use a washroom or the telephone. While the senior is kept busy, the scammer will be stealing. It could be a purse, a wallet or even a bottle of medication. Sometimes the theft is discovered quickly but often the scammer is more subtle and even if they don’t take anything they could be casing the seniors house for a future robbery.

This is a very intimidating situation for an elderly person. But if the senior is prepared they can avoid being victimized in this way.

  • ALWAYS be very cautious and careful when answering the door especially if there is more than one person there.
  • ALWAYS demand identification and ask the person to wait outside while you check it. If you have any doubt, hand it back to them, and close the door and lock it immediately.
  • DO NOT LET THEM IN! Call the utility company to confirm the reason for this visit. If they are legitimate inspectors, they will wait. If they aren’t, they’ll leave in a big hurry.

Recently in Langley, an old scam has resurfaced. This one is particularly difficult to deal with because, like the grandchild in trouble scam it tugs at the heartstrings of the elderly person. The scammer comes to the door with a ‘tale of woe’. They say that they need hot water to warm their baby’s bottle or they need to warm up their baby’s food in your microwave. Police are warning that under no circumstances should the senior allow this person entry. Another version is a person or persons will ask for water for a leaking radiator. Beware of these wolves in sheep’s clothing because once inside they could steal the senior’s wallet or purse. Now the senior must cancel credit cards, renew their driver’s license and care cards and more. Worst of all now the elder is at risk for Identity theft. We will discuss this next week. Until then, make sure that you and your elderly parents don’t open the door to strangers. Crooks know that elderly people and seniors are vulnerable so be savvy and be safe!

Lilianne Fuller, Relationship Manager at B Cared For Services