A pilot program and partnership with the Riley County Emergency Medical Services (EMS) could benefit seniors living at Garden Grove apartments in the event of an emergency. Riley County EMS is kicking off a county-wide initiative in 2020 to collect medical history and prescription medication details from residents. The information will be accessed by emergency medical technicians and paramedics via their secure dispatching system so they can develop a treatment plan in route to responding to a patient in crisis.
Nearly a dozen seniors living at the newly-renovated Garden Grove Apartments in Manhattan, Kansas, are volunteering their medical information to participate in this program. James Marstall of Riley County EMS said large events such as fires and evacuations, contributed to the creation of this new system because first responders face complicated challenges when several people need rescued.
“If we have to evacuate them, we can make sure their medications are taken care of and find out if patients have allergies, if they’re on oxygen or if they have a heart condition,” said Marstall.
The EMS employees that developed this program are a group of support staff that care for patients in their community. Marstall, a community outreach coordinator, added that the group wanted to develop an employee-driven initiative that would impact their community.
The two-page, medical information form was provided with a prepaid envelope to residents. Seniors also received a magnet to post their personal medical information on their apartment refrigerators. Next month, Marstall and his staff will host an information forum with Garden Grove residents in order to answer questions, help complete forms and recruit more participants. This will be part of the Community Resource and Health Fair, open to the public from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m., on October 8, 2019, at Garden Grove Apartments, 1115 Garden Way in Manhattan.
In partnership with Angels Care Home Health, a variety of agencies from around the community will provide health information and resources for seniors such as, Catholic Charities, Flint Hills Breadbasket, Hyvee dietician and pharmacy, Blue Rivers Medical, Manhattan Medical, Riley County Senior Center, Friendship Meals, At Home Care and more.
This event is part of a strategy to provide seniors at Garden Grove with affordable or free community resources to help keep them healthy. The senior population is growing rapidly and in turn creating more demand for affordable housing and services. However, the country is not prepared to meet the needs of this aging group because a major shortage of both already exists. While more seniors live into their 80s and 90s on fixed incomes; health care costs are expected to continue increasing, which will put more of a strain on retirement savings. That is why community resource events, such as this one, can play an important role in helping seniors continue living independently for life.
“We believe seniors have earned the right to age in the neighborhood where they’ve raised families and built friendships,” said Pam Monroe, vice president of property management for National Church Residences. “In addition, we want our seniors to remain near their grandchildren and social circles.”
Garden Grove offers seniors one-bedroom and studio apartments. If you are interested in a tour or learning more about Garden Grove Apartments, please contact Denise Collins at 785-776-2277 or go to https://bit.ly/2kqiMou for more information.
About National Church Residences
National Church Residences serves more than 42,000 seniors through its array of housing and health care services. The not-for-profit organization is driven by a vision of advancing better living for all seniors, enabling them to remain home for life. With 340 communities in 25 states and Puerto Rico, it is the nation’s largest not-for-profit provider of affordable senior housing and the largest manager of service coordinators. The organization also offers residential senior communities, home and community-based services, as well as permanent supportive housing for the formerly homeless and disabled. For more information, visit us at NationalChurchResidences.org and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.