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Senior assisted living discussed

Amanda Butler, Sierra Sun

Seniors in the Truckee and North Shore area have very few options when they need help with the everyday process of living.

“Insurance recognizes certain reasons for needing in- home care,” says Senior Center Director Thomas Ballou. “If you have a stroke, you’re covered. If you’ve broken a hip, some in-home care is covered. But when it is simply because you are getting frail, and it’s nothing a doctor can diagnose – then assisted living is not covered.”

And assisted living is very expensive. Cost is one of the biggest reasons that Truckee does not currently have an assisted living facility. But local senior Helen Smith wants to see that change.

“I’m not seeking this for myself, but for a very good friend and neighbor of mine. I know what it’s like to wonder who is going to put the covers over you at night,” said Smith.

Smith has formed a group of residents to begin discussions of assisted living programs.

“(Smith) sees a need in the community,” said Ballou. “We want to identify what it will take to get (assisted living) here.”

The group held their first meeting in March. Members discussed the need for an assisted living program and identified possible sites where the project could begin.

Director of the Community Wellness Center Janet Brady said the group meetings are important because they help keep the issue in the forefront.

“This is such a big issue and there is not going to be an easy overnight solution,” said Brady.

“But we can’t forget our seniors, it would be horrific if we closed our eyes to their needs.”

To get involved with the group or for more information contact Janet Brady at the Community Wellness Center (530) 582-3483.


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