Archive for the 'checklists' Category

Liz Taylor takes comments

One of the best reads ever on aging deliberately is Liz Taylor–
Her series has been mentioned previously –

I just discovered that the columns published at Kitsap Sun Stories: Liz Taylor: Aging Deliberately allow comments (registration required) and have an RSS feed . This is so much more convenient and useful than the Seattle Times venue. I’m not sure which is the primary home for Liz’s work, however, and Kitsap may not carry all her columns. At the Seattle Times I have to subscribe by E-mail to their health series (once a week e-mail, all health stories which are interesting) to get notice of her columns. Otherwise I have a Google News Alert for Liz Taylor+ aging, which sometimes brings in notice of National Velvet. [the colors behind some items below mean nothing except straightening out the code remains to be done.]

Liz Taylor began her career as a federal consumer-fraud investigator and was appointed by Elizabeth Dole in 1976 to direct a nationwide investigation of the nursing-home industry. She’s worked in the aging field ever since.

In the 1980s, Liz became one of the first geriatric care managers in the Pacific Northwest, working with thousands of families and older adults to find high-quality services. In 2000, she founded Aging Deliberately, a business that teaches people how to prepare for their aging so they’ll have more control over what happens to them. In 2005, she served as a delegate to the White House Conference on Aging. She’s won the American Geriatrics Society’s 2007 Aging Awareness Media Award and the Washington Association of Homes and Services for the Aging’s Excellence in Media Award.

It’s relatively easy to age successfully if you’re wealthy. Money can’t buy happiness, but it certainly allows you to buy the things that make life more comfortable at any age. 1/26/2008 11:00 PM
In my last column, I wrote about a growing problem: what to do when an older person who has dementia hasn’t named anyone she trusts to make decisions for her. This week I’ll tackle a tougher issue: what to do when the person she names does a poor job. 11/17/2007 11:00 PM
My e-mail has had a repeated theme recently: An older person with dementia, such as Alzheimer’s disease, isn’t paying bills, preparing meals, bathing, and other important tasks — but refuses to allow anyone to help.
11/3/2007 09:00 PM |
There’s a certain uniformity to finding a physician under Medicare these days. Rich or poor, if you’re 65 or older, you’re likely to have similar slim pickings (more so if you’re poor and on Medicare and Medicaid). 10/20/2007 11:00 PM |
Most of us want to live a long time, but nobody wants to grow old. The irony is, most of us will — live a long time and grow old. It’s easy to do — all it takes is letting the days roll by. As long as you’re healthy, getting old is a piece of cake.
10/6/2007 11:00 PM |
It’s easy as pie to age well when you’re healthy. The friction comes when you become frail. Sometimes it’s self-inflicted, the product of isolation, poor eating habits, lack of physical activity and falls — all common problems for people who age in their homes but don’t plan it correctly. 9/22/2007 11:00 PM |
A woman in her late 70s, a good friend, is pondering her options. Her home is two stories (or three, including the basement), with many stairs to her bedroom, bathroom and the washing machine. 9/8/2007 11:00 PM
Dad is 87, fun and funny, with moderate dementia. He lived “on the edge” in his own home for years while we kids worried sick. 7/28/2007 11:00 PM
When I was growing up in the 1950s and ’60s, cars were sort of round and later sort of square. My dad wore a hat to work and took the bus.
7/14/2007 11:00 PM
I’m 75 and have lived in an assisted-living facility for a year.
7/8/2007 02:00 AM
Older people are not simply younger people with wrinkles our bodies change dramatically as we age, both inside and out; some parts wear out before others, sometimes several at once.
6/17/2007 02:00 AM
Whether you live at home, in a retirement community, or in a yurt on top of a mountain, as you age, you want to do it consciously.
6/3/2007 02:00 AM

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Senior Center Self-Assessment

The Joint Committee on Senior Centers is comprised of members of the Pennsylvania Association of Senior Centers, the Pennsylvania Association of Area Agencies on Aging and the Pennsylvania Department of Aging. They have a number of other resources, Learn about items of Special Interest

The following checklist has been designed to help you think about your Center from the “first impression” perspective. These are some of the things you could be looking at in your Center to prepare to make a positive, lasting impression on those who come to your Center.

If you are answering “no” to questions, you may want to look at modifying or improving that item. For best results, have a person who is unfamiliar with the Center complete the survey. Problems that we see on a daily basis can sometimes become “invisible” to our eyes.

This checklist can help prepare your Center to be in the best position possible for welcoming the new seniors who respond to the Senior Center Marketing Initiative of June 2002. Prepared by the Joint Committee on Senior Centers, February 2002.

The checklist is available as a pdf file here,

Compare this checklist with the one for the Bethel senior center, When you visit the senior center and try it out, Grabbing public toilets or Visit Bethel Alaska’s Eddie Hoffman Senior Center


1. Is there clear signage identifying the location of the Center from the road?
2. Is a sign posted next to or above the entrance door to the Center so participants can easily find it upon approach to the Center?
3. Is the building exterior free from peeling paint or other repairs?
4. Is the parking lot free from debris and weeds?
5. Is the walkway and parking lot adequately lighted?
6. Are the shrubs, outside plants and lawn well maintained?
7. Are outside walkways free of hazardous objects, including debris, weeds and uneven or broken steps?
8. Is outdoor furniture clean and in good shape?
9. Is there easy access for individuals with disabilities?
10. Are rails leading to the doors secure and well maintained?
11. Are curbs painted to signify distinction of levels?
12. Is the outside of the Center attractive and inviting?


1. Is there adequate lighting in rooms, corridors, elevators and stairways?
2. Are guests acknowledged promptly when they enter your Center?
3. Would the atmosphere be characterized as pleasant?
4. Is there a pleasant smell when entering the Center?
5. Is the Center clean enough to meet your personal standards?
6. Is the area inside clutter free, not only on the floor, but also in the space surrounding it?
7. Is the furniture attractive and easy to get in and out of?
8. Is the furniture arranged to promote interaction and conversation?
9. Are magazines, books or other materials for activities neatly stacked and out of the path of travel?
10. Are curtains and window treatments clean and in good condition?
11. Is there an easy to find and easy to read bulletin board with activities, meal schedules and other current information?
12. Is the activity board or other written materials hanging at a readable level for elderly persons of different heights?
13. Are certificates and licenses posted, if required?
14. Is the lighting adequate for older persons?
15. Is the dining area attractive and inviting?
16. Are participants able to sit where they want during meal times without being assigned?
17. Is the kitchen clean and inviting?
18. Is the meal contribution policy, sign-in sheet, and contribution box easy to locate?
19. Does the noise level allow for conversations and quiet activities?


1. Are changes in floor levels or coverings distinct enough to prevent tripping?
2. Are carpets free from wear and frayed ends?
3. Are small rugs and runners slip-resistant and non-moving?
4. Are lamp, extension and telephone cords placed out of the flow of traffic?
5. Are chairs sturdy and not easily tipped?
6. Are there handrails in hallways and grab bars in bathrooms?
7. Are written emergency evacuation plans with center floor plans posted throughout the Center?
8. Is a fire extinguisher easy to find and do participants know how to use one?
9. Are emergency numbers posted near the phone?
10. Are smoke detectors properly located and in working condition?
11. Are hallways, passageways between rooms, and other heavy traffic areas equally well lit?
12. Are exits and passageways free from clutter?
13. In the kitchen area, are towels, curtains, and other things that might catch fire located away from the range?
14. Are all extension cords and appliance cords located away from the sink or range areas?
15. Are emergency exits clearly marked?
16. Is emergency lighting functional and adequate?


1. Are the Center hours and days of operation posted for participants?
2. Can Center hours be changed or altered if requested?
3. Is access to computers and the internet available?
4. Does the Center offer a wide variety of activities for different interests?
5. Are fitness activities offered regularly?
6. Are participants involved with planning activities?
7. Are costs for activities known to individuals?
8. Are other community groups or non-profits involved with Center activities?
9. Are you conducting marketing/advertising activities in your local area?
10. Are you making use of internet technology for advertising?
11. Are newsletters listing activities and menus given or sent to participants on a regular basis?
12. Is there a posted calendar of activities or a newsletter available for people who enter the Center?
13. Are new participants given an orientation to the Center?
14. Is there a welcoming committee made up of current participants to help make newcomers feel comfortable?

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Nursing Resources Assessment Tools

Geriatric Nursing Resources for Care of Older Adults: Assessment Tools [pdf]

For nurses interested in keeping up to date with developments in geriatric treatment, this set of resources created by expert practitioners will be quite a find. The entire site was developed as part of the Nurse Competence in Aging initiative created by the American Nurses Association. Here, visitors can read over twenty-five two-page assessment tools that include such helpful titles as “Assessing Nutrition in Older Adults”, “Predicting Pressure Ulcer Risk”, and “Immunizations for the Older Adult”. Written in clear and direct language, these resources will also be of assistance for nursing educators and those who are responsible for professional development workshops. It is also worth mentioning that these short tools are designed as screening tools, and are not for diagnosis. [KMG]

From The Scout Report, Copyright Internet Scout Project 1994-2007.

Try This, a publication of the Hartford Institute for Geriatric Nursing, is a series of assessment tools where each issue focuses on a topic specific to the older adult population. The goal of the Try This: Best Practices in Care for Older Adults series of assessment tools is to provide knowledge of best practices in the care of older adults that is:

* easily accessible
* easily understood
* easily implemented, and
* to encourage the use of these best practices by all direct care nurses

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EPA community self-assessment

The EPA and its partners have developed a self-assessment tool for communities to build healthy communities for active aging. The tool provides resources for communities to create a healthy community for active aging.

Click on the hyperlink to each question to get to the more useful parts. For example, question01.htm Otherwise, the “self-assessment” isn’t useful as a workbook.

powered by performancing firefox

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p/o old folks

The Yellow Wallpaper has posted a test (checklist) —

Answering just ONE of her questions requires one to be bravely empathetic.

and a mock participant/observer dare I would like the most vocal members of our city and tribal councils to take up.

Virtual aging for living in a real world

When you visit the senior center is an attempt to raise awareness by the younger or able-bodied person [especially those in power] to see what older people in Bethel have to deal with at their senior center. The images are hosted by a friend at Visit Bethel Alaska’s Eddie Hoffman Senior Center.

There are suggestions there for obscuring vision or approximating a wheelchair on gravel, etc. that anyone can do to get a feeling for whether a building or service is either dangerous (fire exits, poor seating and lighting) or inadequate for other people. Some other checklists [see categories of postings] exist for assistive living facilities, but few if any for regular community facilities.

Another way to empathize came from finding a type of Internet search tool,, which allows human type questions such as How to buy furniture appropriate for elderly people? The answer led to Continue reading ‘Virtual aging for living in a real world’

Tips for events managers working with older people

There are limitations within various web log software (especially if one can only afford the free sites) to identify what people are interested in when they stop by. I don’t care if there are meganumbers**, but I do find it really useful to check every now and again to see what information visitors might be interested in on this site; whether they found bad links; whether they found useful information (maybe I’ve used the wrong terminology; maybe they have used the wrong terminology); etc. The readership information is useful to remind me that people from diverse backgrounds stop by so I shouldn’t use colloquialisms (or I should define them), etc.

[**Ok, the numbers matter in that once there were more than just my friends and relatives stopping by, my responsibility to keep things up-to-date, tidy, and clear increased.]

But I also like to know what else is out there that may be relevant or to find better information than what I have run across by checking out other people’s searches. Here’s a great example from someone who used to search for “seating for older people” (thank you)—

“[PDF] Tips for events managers working with older people
File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat – View as HTML
for people with vision impairment. • Is there adequate seating for older people during. intervals? Does seating have arm-rests and a. suitable height? …!.pdf -”

Including Us Too: Tips for events managers working with older people. January 2001. Free
How do you ensure your event is designed so that older people will be able to attend and enjoy it? This is a handy guide to with practical ideas of what to do and not do to make your event popular and successful with older people. By Margaret Tucker. 16pp. ISBN 0 7313 9829 7. New South Wales [Australia] Ministerial Advisory Committee on Ageing

The tips / checklist is in pdf format, unfortunately. But it has specific questions to ask (hooray!), e.g., How many stairs do participants have to climb? and some not so specific, e.g., Is there adequate seating for frail older people to wait in comfort? Overall it is an excellent resource and really exciting to see the thought and consideration put into it.

[The html version is available from Google here, but get the original if possible.]

Check out their discussion papers and other publications, too.

    A fair go, a fair share, a fair say, for older people in NSW

The NSW Ministerial Advisory Committee on Ageing regularly publishes discussion papers, reports, fact sheets and brochures. They are written for a range of audiences. Some are for community education – either for older people or for others working with older people. Other publications are discussion papers, with the aim of widening debate on a particular topic. Some are research papers, with or without recommendations to government.

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O’Folks (off their rocker)

Old age isn't a disease.

Arctic sunset

© header image

Comments how-tos

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