Adult Day Centers are able to care for persons with Alzheimer's Disease or related disorders, mental retardation and developmental disabilities, chronic mental illness, and physical problems related to aging and disability. Not all centers are able to provide care for all of these various populations. If you are looking for care for yourself or a loved one, it will be important to find out what kinds of people the center you are checking into is able to care for. Has the staff been trained to care for the special needs of persons with the kinds of needs you or your loved one has? Are there other people in the center with similar kinds of needs? Is the program integrated, that is do all persons regardless of disability, or special needs participate in one program or are there specialized programs and services available? These are just some of the questions you should ask.
Adults who can benefit most from the special care provided in an Adult Day Center are those who need supervision, social interaction and assistance with more than one activity of daily living such as eating, walking, toileting, bathing or dressing. Centers provide a wide variety of services such as Recreational Therapy, Meals, Social Services, Transportation, Personal Care including bathing, hair and nail care, Nursing Services, Rehabilitation Therapy including physical, occupational and speech therapy, and Medical Services.
Not every center will provide all of these services. Many programs, especially in urban areas, may provide the full range of services. Individual participants should receive the services that they need based on an assessment by the center's professional staff and the development of a plan of care to meet those needs. Adult Day Centers have a variety of professional staff based on the range of services that they provide and may include nurses, social workers, therapists and other staff specially trained to work in the day care setting.
For frail older adults, Adult Day Center activities may include everything from participating in a variety of programs such as current event discussion groups, arts and craft activities, health education, and passive exercise groups. Music and art activities give participants an opportunity to express themselves in a variety of ways, as well as opportunities to learn and develop new skills.
Adult Day Services are less expensive than institutional care. Fees for Adult Day Services vary from center to center based on what services are included in the fee. Some centers may be able to offer low income persons a reduced fee based on ability to pay.
For more information on Adult Day Services, you may contact The Wisconsin Adult Day Services Association toll free at 1-877-406-0899.
Article submitted by Marilyn Lange, Executive Director, Village Adult Services, Inc.
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