Covid has proven quite a challenging environment for individuals and businesses alike. As we navigate the reopening our scientists are learning more about the virus, we are learning how to operate businesses with increased awareness of safety and cleanliness. SeniorSAFE operates in the construction community, and we are required to access spaces of your homes. We are using gloves, masks, and bleach wipes for each object. Whenever possible, we are trying to avoid contact with our customers (asking them to stay 6 feet away, having payments placed in a location rather than passing to us, or even paying electronically, etc.). A core part of our business is performing a safety assessment. This does sometimes require us to have our customers demonstrate certain skills so we are able to best meet their needs. We are very sensitive to each individuals safety and take every precaution possible. We have been successful in reporting zero transmissions among our customers!
Some of our projects during this time period include: installing a ceiling transfer lift system, installing grab bars, building railings, and installing cutout bathroom systems. Of course, we continue to activate Electronic Caregiver systems to keep our customers safe and improve their remote monitoring capabilities for their children and medical professionals. What methods are you using for safety in this new environment?
What Are Seniors to Do about Coronavirus? This is truly proving to be a once in a lifetime reaction to an illness! Worldwide we are witnessing quarantines, social distancing, food and supply shortages at grocery, overworked medical staff, shortages of medical supplies, and closed restaurants and shops. The economic impact on businesses and consumers will prove trying in the coming weeks. My children are home from school until at least April (and they are already bored with being home!) with online learning being trialed at the end of the week. These are interesting times indeed!
The most vulnerable group of people are seniors. Seniors in Nursing homes are not allowed to discharge. Visitation is significantly restricted. It is advised to not visit them at their homes if you are potentially exposed to the virus. Homecare agencies are being tasked with increasing their caregiving needs, however, they already have a shortage of staff before this! Visiting nursing agencies, who are attempting to provide that bridge of medical care to recently returning ill and seniors are being told to hold their visits for several weeks, or to discharge their customers entirely by family members. This lack of monitoring for our most vulnerable is deeply concerning to professionals and to our loved ones! Remote monitoring of people is an option.
Explore Electronic Caregiver’s ProHealth system- it is a comprehensive public health and safety monitoring system. Some of the reassuring features are:
24/7 powering by Amazon Web Services and AT&T Wireless 24/7 Health Emergency Wearable Pendant Monitored body temperature vital device and daily reminder Voice controlled virtual health assessment Monitored medication reminders 24/7 physician on demand service-PocketMD Remote monitoring ability by loved ones and professions – RemoteCare 24/7 app
This system is able to replace worry with care for all interested parties and is very low cost for the piece of mind offered.
Many of you may not know this, but I serve as the national director of health and safety product sales for Age Safe America. We have been wondering how we can contribute in some small way to keeping our most vulnerable safe and we have arranged a substantial savings on this product with Electronic Caregiver. Age Safe America is able to offer an additional 25% off this product for all people who obtain a system through them.
Please learn more about this system at: https://agesafeamerica.com/coronavirus-get-24-7-chronic-care-and-monitoring/
As always, my team and I are here to help. Please feel free to reach out to me with any questions you may have!
9 Ramps May Be the Low Cost Way to Safely Exit Your Home.
Many people with disabilities and the elderly will require modifying their home due to wheelchairs or other mobility devices being needed. Installing a wheelchair ramp is often the easiest solution for access. We install several wheelchair ramps each year. There are a few things that you must consider. You may choose to make is a family project, or hire a professional to install one for you. Regardless, here are a few points you must take into account: The Right Wheelchair Ramp for You. Building a wheelchair ramp is not a decision to be taken lightly. There are many factors that will go into each of your choices along the way. Here are some questions to consider when finding the right wheelchair ramp for you and your home. What type of mobility device are you using now? Will this device change over time? If you are using a cane or walker today, you may need to consider a wheelchair in the future. Which entrance is the most used? Is it the most accessible space? What are the local zoning requirements? Does the homeowner’s association have a requirement? Are there permits required in your town? What material do you want the ramp made of? Wood, steel, aluminum, composite materials? How permanent do you want the ramp to be? How much time do you (or your family) have to invest in construction? Would you be better off with a contractor or wheelchair ramp installer?What is your budget? Will your insurance cover any of the cost? Design of the Ramp The design of a wheelchair ramp is going to depend on your needs, the layout of your home and yard and the height of the ramp. ADA requires a foot of ramp for every inch of height for all permanent and semipermanent ramps. If you are able to remove the ramp each time it is used, a slop of 6 inches for every inch of height may be used. The Width of the Ramp The ramp must be 36 inches wide between handrails. This is to enable room for all wheelchairs, including power wheelchairs. Wheelchair Ramp Platforms Platforms are required at every 30 feet. We usually put one at the start of the ramp by the doorway as it is wider for opening and closing. A platform must be 4 ft x 4 ft for straight aways or right hand turns, and must be 4 ft x 6 ft for 180 degree turns. This allows for users to take a rest and break before continuing along the ramp. The measurements of the platform are not considered in the total slope of the ramp. Benefits of platforms include: Navigate around any obstacles present in the yard such as trees. Place the bottom of the ramp strategically on the sidewalk or driveway. Fit a ramp into a small space using a tight switch back. ADA Ramp Guidelines The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) has a distinct set of guidelines that everyone who is building a wheelchair ramp must adhere to The ramp should not exceed a 1:12 ratio. This means that for every 1-inch of rise, the ramp should be at least 12-inches long. Any ramp that is longer than 6 inches should have handrails on both sides. They should allow for 36 inches of ramp space between the rails. Ramps that are longer than 30 feet require a platform to break up the sections. There should be at least a 2-inch flange running along the bottom sides of a ramp to prevent slipping off of the edge. Non-skid surfaces should be used and the ramp designed to prevent water accumulation. Building Materials for the Ramp Wheelchair ramps can be constructed from either metal or wood. Each material has its own advantages and disadvantages.No matter the material, a ramp should be sturdy and firmly secured to the ground. They should also have a slip-resistant surface. Wood Wheelchair Ramps Many homeowners find wood to be more appealing and prefer to build their ramp with that. Decorative touches such as spindles can be added and the deck can be stained or painted to match the home. Wood ramps also tend to be more of a permanent fixture for the home. If carefully constructed with the right materials, they can last for years and add to the home’s value because it is accessible. The decking surface on a wooden ramp is crucial to ensuring a non-slip surface. Without a good wood, the ramp can quickly become slick in wet weather and be dangerous even for those without disabilities. There are a number of companies who produce ADA-compliant composite materials that are designed to increase traction. Trex Accents® is a good example. Do note, that if you decide to build a wooden ramp, a construction permit is required with proper building codes additionally necessary prior to operation. Metal Wheelchair Ramps, Often produced with aluminum, the primary advantage to a metal wheelchair ramp is the ease of installation. These can be simple ramps for small inclines that install in an hour and easily transported should you move to a new home. Metal ramps can also be complex, custom designs with landing platforms like by EZ Access, National, or AMRAMP. Many homeowners do not like the curb appeal of a metal ramp. However, there are some that do look very nice and have a non-medical aesthetic. Advantages to this ramp are that they install quickly, do not require building permits, and are easily removed when no longer necessary. Remember, whenever possible, hire a professional. The liability of improperly constructing a ramp is often not worth the risk. We install several ramps per year and will gladly help fit the proper product to your needs.
Are Cutout Bath Tub Systems the Cost Effective Solution for Bathrooms?
Did you know it is possible to have an opening cut in the front wall of your bathtub and convert your existing tub into a walk-in shower? It is and the technique to do so is called a “Tub Cut.” SeniorSafe personally installs the Clean Cut Bath Systems.
How Does Clean Cut Bath Work? Simply, we use a saw to cut out a piece of the front wall of your bathtub and then refinish the tub walls, thereby creating a doorway in the sidewall of the tub. After the tub to shower conversion has been completed, a few inch threshold will still remain at the bottom of the opening. The remaining threshold combined with a shower curtain will work together to keep the water inside, effectively turning your bathtub into a walk-in shower stall. IF others in your household still wish to use the tub for soaking, a door-insert is optional and can be added. Door inserts are equipped with a hinged door allowing the user to step in and out through the opening. When the door is closed, it is designed to seal the opening in the tub wall allowing members of the household who wish to take a soaking bath to do so.
Who Would Benefit From a Tub Cut? Persons who can’t… 1. Step over the bathtub wall. 2. Lift their legs over the tub wall whilst using a tub bench to enter the tub. 3. People who have a history of falling or neurological conditions.
FAQ’s About Tub Cuts 1. Can a Tub Cut be performed on all types of tubs? In most cases, the answer is YES! We perform this on porcelain, steel, acrylic, fiberglass, and cast iron tubs.
2. How long does it take to complete an install?
We complete them in less than a day! Often they are installed in 3 or 4 hours. Of course cast iron and steel will take longer as we have to tape off the room to prevent splintered metal fragments from getting in the walls. ONce the install is completed it typically takes 24 hours for the materials to cure for use.
3. Can the threshold be completely eliminated? No. Since the bathtub floor does not rest flush against the ground, it is not possible to eliminate the threshold entirely. The threshold must extend a little bit above the interior tub floor the prevent water from running out of the opening.
4. How high will the threshold be? It is typically about 4 inches above the floor. However, it is important to note that if there is any flaring, or decorative angles to the tub wall this must be taken into account. The bottom of the insert is blocked from the inside to maintain structural integrity of the wall and this requires a little lift.
5. Does the opening have to be centered? No. The opening can be positioned in the middle of the tub wall or off-center to one side or the other. It is often set off the center of the wall to account for toilets, or preferred side of entry for the customer. It does need to be where the width of the tub wall is consistent. For example, the middle 2/3 of the tub may be 4 inches wide, but the edges round. Where it starts getting thicker is where the edge should be. This is important to maintain the structural integrity of the walls.
10. How much does the project cost?
On average, we install these systems for $1000-$2000. Of course, prices vary depending on the material your tub is made out of. It is substantially cheaper than installing a walk in shower, which will run in excess of $5,000-$10,000. Additionally, the project is completed in less than a day and is usable within 24 hours!
As all of you know, we offer all the solutions you need to get safely into and out of your tub. From tub seats and grab bars, to walk in shower systems. We try to accommodate every price range to arrive at the most cost effective solution for you! Thanks for reading and please reach out with any questions at Kris@seniorsafeaging.com
Welcome back everyone! I know I have been off the radar for a while, but I have been busy! First, I revamped the website to be more integrated and functional. Please check back here often! I will be updating the site more frequently and will keep all of my newsletter posts here. I know some of you are visiting for the first time, and some are old friends, but I want to let all of you know that I truly value you as a customer and contact.
Electronic Caregiver is launching some new technologies this year. They recently upgraded their PERS systems to 4G and they are releasing Addison this year. They just completed the Consumer Electronics Show in Vegas last week, where Addison Care Artificial intelligence was a giant success! Stay tuned for its availability. Please check her out at Addison.care
I continue to install provide aging in place services throughout the northeast, utilizing innovative products to make keeping you home safely my top priority. Whether it is basic grab bars, commode and shower chair, or ramps and transfer lift systems, I am available to assist you. Please let all of your friends know!
Lastly, toward the end of the year, I was named the National Director of Health and Safety for Age Safe America. This is a true honor and privilege to provide training and technology services to professional organizations and new senior home safety specialists throughout the United States. I also became a member of the Aging Life Care Association- a nationwide group of geriatric care managers who can help with all of the complexities of senior care.
2020 is off to a running start. I look forward to serving you and your customers in the coming years. As always, please reach out at Kris@seniorsafeaging.com if there is anything you need.