LIFE at Lourdes PACE Profile: “Mrs. E”
Mrs. Edwards-or “Mrs. E” as the neighbors call her-has lived on her block in Camden for 48 years. There, the 80-year-old and her husband raised three children. Mr. E died three years ago. Unfortunately, Mrs. E. suffered a stroke within a year of her husband’s death, leaving her partially paralyzed. Despite this setback, Mrs. E still wished to live at home. As a result, her daughter Mary moved back home to help her mom with daily activities such as bathing, eating, and administering her medicines.
Mary has a full-time job in Philadelphia. Each day at 6 a.m., she would rise to get ready for work and then get her mom up, dressed, fed, and moved into the living room. She would leave lunch in the refrigerator. For the most part, though, Mrs. E was home alone until Mary returned at 5 p.m. to prepare dinner, help her mom get bathed, and get her to bed. Then, Mary was able to relax.
Mary was worried about her mom’s safety while she was at work, but she did not have money for extra help. Mary was also exhausted from the routine.
A church member told Mary about LIFE at Lourdes, a Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly. Life at Lourdes is designed for seniors like Mrs. E who should probably be in a nursing home but want to live at home. To her relief, Mary learned that LIFE at Lourdes was a good fit for her mom’s needs and the program costs would be fully covered through Medicare and Medicaid. Enrollment was easy and within weeks her mom began receiving services at her home and at the LIFE at Lourdes Community Center on McClellan Avenue in Pennsauken.
Now, a LIFE at Lourdes van picks Mrs. E up in the morning Monday through Friday, and she is transported to the LIFE Center, where she has breakfast before settling down to play games, visit with other seniors or do an activity. A hot lunch is served at noon and at 3:30 p.m., Mrs. E is taken home.
At the Center, Mrs. E’s health is closely monitored. She has an appointment with the physical therapy department every day at 11 a.m. for 30 minutes. On Tuesday and Thursday, a LIFE Care Specialist helps her shower, and every other Thursday, she has a check-up with Dr. Paul, the LIFE at Lourdes Primary Care Physician. Mrs. E also visits periodically with a podiatrist, ophthalmologist and chaplain. On Sunday, a LIFE Care Specialist comes to the home to give Mrs. E a bath.
Mrs. E enjoys the new routine and has made several new friends at the Center. Mary is impressed with the Center’s staff and programs, is thrilled her mom is engaged with other seniors, and appreciates that her mom is receiving ongoing medical support by experts in geriatric care.