Colorado Geriatric Care Management



Colorado Geriatric Care Management Denver and the Front Range

The staff of The Care Navigator provides geriatric care management services in Denver and the Colorado Front Range. Geriatric care management is a specialty similar to care management for disabled adults, another service provided by The Care Navigator.

The Care Navigator staff serve in the role of a geriatric care manager and possess the expertise of working with older adults, anyone over age 50 all the way to 100. Older adults, as aging occurs, have both physical and cognitive needs.  Experience with memory loss and support with health care needs is a component of geriatric care management.  The administrative staff of The Care Navigator provide ancillary support for setting medical appointments, filing insurance claims, scheduling caregiving agencies and many other projects important to delivering higher standards of care.

The geriatric care management service of The Care Navigator offers support in many areas. Physical needs include the slowing down of the body that relates to day to day abilities that can become more difficult with aging or after an accident like a broken hip. These are called activities of daily living. Activities of daily living include: bathing and hygiene, dressing, continence, eating, toileting, and transferring meaning rising from the bed or rising from bed and transferring into a wheelchair.

There is another group of daily activities called instrumental activities. Instrumental activities of daily living include cooking, driving, using the telephone or a computer, shopping, managing money, ordering and picking up prescriptions, managing finances and paying bills, and organizational projects of keeping a calendar and scheduling appointments.

A geriatric care management assessment from The Care Navigator serves to ask questions and to make recommendations on various types of assistance that might be helpful for both activities of daily living and instrumental activities of daily living. Suggestions and feedback from individuals and families are important so that a care plan for the client can be developed. We are able to respond to a wide range of requests.

Discussing the subject of activities of daily living and instrumental activities of daily living can be difficult when adult children or other family members begin to see gaps. For example, when mom or dad forgot a medical appointment, medications were missed, weight loss is occurring that might indicate a medical concern, or a car accident occurred. Talking about the future to make a plan for “when this happens,” or “what if this happens,” is best before a need arises.

Parents often feel that their children are overstepping boundaries or pointing out faults when these subjects are mentioned. Sometimes it is less threatening to have a geriatric care management assessment with a non-related party introducing the subject to parents or loved ones.

Geriatric care managers provide a wide range of other supports including initiating long-term care insurance claims, initiating new patient paperwork for medical offices, and attending medical appointments. For individuals having a long-term care insurance policy, the benefits can be significant.  Long term care insurance benefits range from in home care, home modifications, day programs, assisted living, memory care, and skilled nursing. Many policies have elimination periods and the paperwork to initiate a long-term care policy can sometimes be intimidating. Geriatric care management can smooth the process and reduce the frustrations of denied claims.

Attending medical appointments becomes more important when health needs are challenging to manage. Older adults sometimes forget information discussed at a medical appointment. Other times a suggested follow-up is forgotten. Prescriptions are not filled. Having an extra set of eyes and ears, much like a personal assistant is important. Geriatric care managers also know the questions that should be asked at medical appointments to ensure that care needs are met.

The Care Navigator geriatric care managers are knowledgeable about medical professionals in the Denver metro area and Front Range. Many of our clients use a variety of professionals that include geriatric physicians, internal medicine, cardiology, urology, gynecology, endocrinology, mental health, physiatrists, dermatologists, nutritionists, therapists for speech, physical, and occupational therapy, palliative care, and hospice.

The Care Navigator supervises in home care situations by overseeing caregiving agencies. Many family members or individuals have attempted to find reliable care only to be disappointed. Families fail to realize that they or a geriatric care manager is needed to direct and manage the care agency staff. While simple situations may not require oversight, individuals with health needs or who need a high level of care benefit from the oversight of a geriatric care manager. Caregivers are unsupervised in the home of an older adult and stores about of older adults being taken advantage of by well-meaning caregivers who cross boundaries and feel like they are family. And who should receive the benefits of a family member.

Geriatric care management looks at the entire picture of where individuals lives, to the safety of the home, activities of daily living, instrumental activities of daily living, medical care, in home care services, rehabilitation, hospitalizations and return to home, and plans for daily care. We also provide support at the time an individual must transition from their home or a current care situation for a situation that offers a higher level of care.

The geriatric care managers of The Care Navigator visit clients wherever they live: private homes, independent living situations, assisted living, memory care and skilled nursing. Geriatric care managers advocate for client needs and become the “squeaky wheel” to ensure that the needs of our clients are not ignored. Sometimes just knowing that someone is “showing up” adds an additional layer of attention by care staff at communities versus an individual who has no one to check up on them and who may not be a good self-advocate.   We make certain that all care team partners are taking their responsibilities seriously to care for our clients.

The geriatric care managers of The Care Navigator provide support in situations that include a wide variety of projects that may not seem related to “care” but are related to the living situation of the client. Ancillary projects include assisting with home repairs, pets to the vet, and arranging outside service providers.  Geriatric care managers are well-versed to respond to a wide variety of situations.

Above average care takes time, attention, and support. Call 720-726-3111 x 1 to learn how the geriatric care managers of The Care Navigator can support you or a loved one.