The Alzheimer Society of Lanark County has opened a satellite office in Fairview Manor.
Previously located on Industrial Drive, the Almonte satellite office moved to its new location—on the first floor of Fairview Manor at 75 Spring Street—in early September. An Education and Support Coordinator from the Alzheimer Society will be in the office every Monday and Thursday from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
“We opened the Almonte satellite office about a year ago,” says Alzheimer Society of Lanark Executive Director Louise Noble. “In order to be even more accessible to families in Almonte dealing with Alzheimer’s, we recently approached the Almonte General Hospital to see if it had any available space. The Hospital has given us space on the first floor of the Manor, close to the long-term care home’s dementia unit.”
In addition to providing information and support from the satellite office to those with Alzheimer’s disease and their families, the Education and Support Coordinator also has access to a meeting room in the Manor to provide group education sessions.
“Our focus is the community,” explains Ms. Noble. “We want to make a difference for those living with the disease and their caregivers and care partners. The newly diagnosed, in particular, need somewhere to turn for information and support.”
The Alzheimer Society of Lanark County provides individual support to help those who have been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease or related dementia to better understand the changes they may be experiencing. The Society also provides tips and strategies to help with day-to-day activities, offers emotional support and encourages planning for the future.
The Society also organizes caregiver support groups and the Day Away Program—a social program for individuals with Alzheimer’s disease or related dementia. Its goal is to provide socialization and support for individuals with Alzheimer’s who live at home, while providing the caregiver with respite relief. The Day Away Program closest to Almonte operates at 15 Bates Drive in Carleton Place from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays.
“A diagnosis of Alzheimer’s can be overwhelming,” says Ms. Noble. “We provide information on how to deal with various behaviours and what treatments are available. We bring in experts, such as lawyers and financial specialists to provide advice, and we put people in touch with the Community Care Access Centre and mental health services.”
According to the Alzheimer Society of Canada, more than 103,000 Canadians will develop dementia this year, the equivalent to one person every five minutes. By 2038, this will become one person every two minutes, or more than 257,000 people per year.
“We are busier than we have ever been,” says Ms. Noble. “That is another important reason for us to be in the community and accessible.”
Ms. Noble said having an office in Fairview Manor has a number of benefits. “For us, it is beneficial to have a connection with the Manor’s dementia unit,” she explains. “Being in the Manor may encourage caregivers with loved ones living there or elsewhere in the Manor to turn to us for help.”
Ms. Noble also hopes visitors to the office who are caring at home for someone with Alzheimer’s will become more familiar with Fairview Manor and what it offers. “The prospect of moving a loved one to a long-term care home can be daunting and frightening,” she says. “Getting a first-hand look at what Fairview Manor is like can help alleviate some of those concerns.”
The Society also hopes to work with the Ottawa Valley Family Health Team’s physicians and interdisciplinary health-care providers to ensure those with Alzheimer’s and their families are referred to the support they need. The Family Health Team is located nearby at 95 Spring Street.
Pam Murphy, Fairview Manor’s Director of Long-Term Care and Director of Resident Care, says having the Alzheimer Society’s Almonte office on-site is “a wonderful addition.”
“When I provide tours to families considering a placement due to dementia, it is very helpful to be able to refer them to the Society right here in the building,” Ms. Murphy explains. “It is very important for those with Alzheimer’s and their families to have a third party to turn to for information and help. Those visiting the Society’s office will also become more familiar with the Manor, and gain a better understanding of what long-term care is and what we can provide.”
Almonte General Hospital President and CEO Mary Wilson Trider also welcomed the opening of the Society’s satellite office in Fairview Manor. “We are committed to working with health system partners such as the Alzheimer Society of Lanark County to meet the needs of our community,” says Mrs. Trider. “The Society provides important services, support and information and we were very pleased to be able to offer them space on-site. Having them integrated into our organization in this way will help all of us to identify opportunities to work together to provide better service closer to home for the people of Mississippi Mills, such as a Day Away Program in Almonte.”
For more information, please visit the Alzheimer Society of Lanark County’s Almonte satellite office, phone 613-256-3113, extension 2966 (toll-free 1-800-511-1911), send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.alzheimersocietyoflanark.ca.
For more information, please contact:
Mary Wilson Trider, President and CEO
Almonte General Hospital
613-256-2514, ext. 2220