We’ve talked a lot on the blog about how most older adults would prefer to age in place and stay in their homes if possible. While aging in place can be more difficult than it sounds, Washtenaw County is fortunate to be the home of various community programs aimed at helping older adults remain in their homes. Today on the blog we’re going to speak with Nicole Boyer, Membership Consultant for EHM Senior Solutions’ LifeChoices program. Nicole will discuss more about the program, the services offered, and how to get started.
Senior Resource Connect: If you had to give an “elevator speech” about what your organization does, how would you describe it?
Nicole Boyer: LifeChoices is a comprehensive program of wellness and care services for healthy and independent older adults who want a long-term plan in place, offering peace of mind as they age at home. It’s Michigan’s first membership program designed to deliver a range of services and support throughout your lifetime, helping older adults maintain their independence and remain in their own homes.
SRC: Walk me through the step-by-step process. What happens when you get a phone call/referral?
NB: Most often, older adults discover our program through our educational workshops. Upon expressing interest in membership, we take a personalized approach. I arrange an initial in-home meeting to address their concerns and build their confidence in aging at home. We usually engage in multiple consultations to fully communicate our program along with their expectations and preferences and ensure that LifeChoices is a good fit for them. I’m always happy to speak with anyone interested! I can be reached at (734) 679-0533 or [email protected]
SRC: What organizations do you work closely with?
NB: While we are a division of EHM Senior Solutions, our services are complemented by their array of offerings. We also engage in meaningful partnerships with various local resources in Washtenaw County. These partnerships focus on not only helping us care for our members’ needs but educating them on a variety of aging topics like technology, hospice, advanced care planning and volunteering in their communities.
SRC: What are some things you wish the public knew about your role?
NB: My background in geriatric care management distinguishes my role from that of a salesperson. I’m here as a consultant to empower older adults with the knowledge and tools they need to plan for their future care. My priority is ensuring our current and future members feel fully supported and comfortable during our interactions. I’m passionate about sharing information on local resources, whether our program is the right fit for them. We also offer flexible pay-as-you-go services and have found that our home maintenance services, available throughout Washtenaw County, are particularly popular.
SRC: What tips do you have for someone who’s looking to age in place?
NB: I strongly recommend that individuals begin their research and education on local resources focused on older adults before an urgent need arises. Planning for a worst-case scenario, even if it never happens, ensures that you have essential local contacts ready to call in case of a health crisis. It can be incredibly overwhelming to search for services when you or a loved one is in the hospital, facing imminent discharge. By proactively seeking out and learning about these resources, you can save yourself a great deal of stress.
SRC: Is there anything you would like to add?
NB: We are committed to providing valuable, free educational presentations on a range of future care planning topics. Currently, our most popular workshops include “How to Make Aging in Place a Reality”, “How to Thrive while Solo Aging” and “How to Advocate for Me While Aging”. To stay updated on our upcoming workshops, check out our website at www.ehmss.org/events