STUCK AT HOME WITH NOTHING TO DO
Neuro Vitality Center is offering access to our VIRTUAL CENTER to all of you who are sheltering in place because of your chronic illness, your age or your disability. Now you will be able to take part in group activities including exercise, yoga, group discussions, individually needed therapies and, if you wish, a home delivered lunch. Every day will offer opportunities to join with your peers, meet new people and participate in competitions, sing-a-longs, educational programs and many other programs. For those of you who have IEHP, Molina or Kaiser MediCal insurance coverage, we will offer medical treatment and needed therapies along with the group activities and home delivered meals. For those of you who do not, we will offer a full menu of group activities, some special exercise groups and a home delivered meal. Give us a call to put together a program specific to your wants, needs and financial situation. We have to stay home for our safety and the safety of those around us – let’s make sure we make the best of this and join together to help each other through this terrible time. We are at 760-323-7676 every day Monday – Friday from 8:00am to 3:30 pm.Look forward to talking with you and having you join us in fighting this pandemic together.
May 2020 Blog
May is Older American Month. While this is a difficult time for everyone, it is extremely hard on all of us who are at high risk of serious complications or death from this insidious virus. It was good to hear that the federal government is focusing on nursing homes quality control and systems of care – long overdue in many of our minds. Additionally, there has been an enormous amount of money for meals on wheels, transportation – although I am not sure what that is targeted to fund – and in home health services. But, I was sorry not to hear concern for Senior Centers, Adult Day Programs, Assisted Living facilities along with millions of vulnerable seniors who are not attached to a formal system of care. For those of us at the Neuro Vitality Center, we realize that the COVID-19 crisis has thrown out a challenge to the health and well being of those who have depended upon us for help and hope. We understand the restrictive orders we are under. We listen to the medical profession and the scientists and understand that our strokes, our diabetes, our heart problems along with the other health issues we add to the burden of getting older put us at a higher risk for infection. We also know that we do not want to infect any of our NVC friends, the staff and our great volunteers if we are unlucky enough to have been infected ourselves. But, on the other hand, this is our extended family and we miss all being together and even though we fight and complain, we also laugh and relax together.The question you all ask is when are we going to open again. I can’t answer that because I really do not know. There is no benchmark I can share to have you track and say once we reach “xyz”, we will open the next day. We do know that we are constant contact with the Department of Aging who is working diligently with the State government and they are keeping us as up to date as is possible. But – and this is speculation on my part – I do not see us opening for many months in the future. But we are a group who fights, who doesn’t give up, who has not just sat at home and won’t give up on each other. We are working hard to put together programs that you can join using your phones, your laptops or your computers. We will have group activities, therapies, counselling and education where you can join in and talk to your friends as well as interact with all of us. We can’t replicate the gym, but we will have Bootsie to lead us in some exercise and even work one on one with those of your who need it. Let us know if you don’t have a cell phone or a lap top, a tablet or computer. Also if your computer monitor doesn’t have a camera. We can help. Our supporters want to help each of you to have the opportunity to keep up the good work and to stay together as we stay safe. I am here at the center and you know you can call me anytime. Ann and Elsa and Bootsie are also here. Mike is not here all the time but we can always find him at end of his phone. Nancy is our new nurse and is here to help as well ( By the way – Ashley and John welcomed their little girl in April – mom and baby doing fine). We will be working hard in May to get you all up and running and joining in to our new Virtual Clinic and look forward to seeing you all again soon. And – just one more thing – yes we do all need haircuts except for Joe.
April Blog 2020
It is difficult to believe that is a year since we closed our fun filled thrift shop and started our massive change to become a certified CBAS and Adult Day Care provider. The process has been very long and drawn out and we were admitting our first patients to these new programs as early as February and looking forward to seeing many more in the ensuing month. And then, as you all know, our city issued a shelter in place order on March 15th. This was extended to the State very quickly the following day. While we are considered to be an essential service, due to safety considerations, many of you chose to remain at home and we agreed that that was the best way to handle this crisis. Most of our peer centers throughout the state followed along very quickly and as of last week center services have been suspended for all providers. We want everyone to know that we are working with the State and with our insurance providers to try to come up with alternative services and help that we can give to each of you who need us while we comply with the emergency policies that are in place to lessen the potential catastrophic results of the COVID-19 spread. Our region is high risk due to our population trending older than many places in California and of the many who have chronic problems that put us at even higher risk. We want to protect ourselves, our loved ones and our friends from the spread of this disease by doing all we can to mitigate the danger and to put an end to the risk. With all that in mind, we are seeking guidance from the Department of Aging to tell us what kind of services we can provide and what they might look like. We are search for alternative ways to keep in touch with all of you and to keep you working on getting better. This could include some exercise, maybe lunch, some activities – does anyone know how to do group BINGO on the net?Please stay safe, practice social distancing as best you can and wash your hands frequently remembering to try not to touch your face. We hope to see you all soon - if not in person - via facetime, duo, zoom, ring central or some other audio and video share app. If you have any questions, please call anytime.
NOVEMBER 2019 Blog
Halloween just sneaked up on us and here we go into the holiday seasons. Thanksgiving is barely a bump in the road to Christmas and New Year’s and we start right in to 2020. Wow. Does anyone else feel like we just did this? 2019 has been a year of big changes here at the Center both physically in the facility, changes in the staff, changes in the Board and changes in the volunteers. Many of you have seen friends come and go, lost your beloved Thrift Shop, could barely find your way around as rooms closed and opened for flooring, painting, rebuilding. But, watching all of you, I have been so impressed with each of your ability to go with what the new day brings. I look to each of you who are here with us at NVC, each of you who have gone through massive change in your own life, your situation, your very agency and I commend your strength, your tenacity and your ability to keep going no matter the obstacles thrown in your path. What is a little construction, a little confusion, a little change to each of you? Just another day. We have done all of the redesign and increased staffing to be able to grow and expand our help to many more of those adults in the Valley who have no other place to go to gain the support and the help to enjoy and thrive every day. With chronic disease, disabilities and cognitive decline our friends and our neighbors will be joining us to work at improving their lot in life and achieving a level of control and enjoyment that keeps them from being isolated, depressed and lacking enjoyment of life. You all are the role models, the guides and it is all of you that will bring what the Center stands for and what the Center offers to all of those who seek our help. 2020 will continue our changes and you all will form the foundation that provides the spirit and the joy to all who come to us for help.
As the temperatures begin to decline out of triple digits here in the desert, we start to see our manyfriends slowly trickle in from their summer homes. We see the traffic increase, we see the streets busyand we see the calendar of events start to become filled with places to go and people to hear impartingwisdom on many and varied topics at venues throughout the valley. We are a nation overwhelmed withaccess to information: the internet, television, advertising, newspapers, lecturers and more. Those of uswho suffer from chronic illnesses are particularly vulnerable since we search for answers from as manysources as we can looking for that one thing that will make us better.How do we sort among all the information coming at us to determine that which is of value and thatwhich should be ignored? There is not an easy answer to this question but there are a few things that wecan keep in mind to help use develop a self-screen to help keep out the noise but allow us to be up todate and informed.One of the major screens we use here at the center is the question: is this person selling anything? Wehave many people ask us if they may make presentations to our clients touting their service or theirproducts as the best thing to make life better. A couple of things to keep in mind when evaluating theveracity of a speaker, service or product are:Products that aid treatments are vigorously tested and go through many levels of approvalbefore being released to the public. Even then, most truly effective products are regulated intheir delivery through licensed professionals such as doctors or pharmacists. Products that aresold directly to the public have to be benign enough not to do harm which means, in most cases,they are not effective either.Standards and methods of care also go through rigorous testing before they are accepted asstandards of practice. There are a lot of good ideas and ways to treat diseases that are proposedby well meaning people but few of them have gone through the long term study needed toprove efficacy.Things that occur simultaneously do not necessarily have a causative factor. Be very skeptical ofarticles that use the words “may” or ‘could”. For example, while most people who haveAlzheimer’s have grey hair, no one would propose that grey hair causes Alzheimer’s.On the other hand, we can learn a great deal from hospitals and from Universities. While we understandthat most Doctor presentations are designed to entice you to his/her practice for an appointment, wecan still learn a lot from the subject matter and can ask questions. Presentations form professors andscientist researchers can be a great source of knowledge also giving us the opportunity to learn aboutcutting edge research even though in most cases work done in university labs is many years away fromactual treatments.One last thing we have noticed over the years is what is called the halo effect. There are many thingsthat can make us feel better if we like the person or just feel good about what we are doing. Some ofthat is as simple and as complex as our attitude. That is something we can all agree is a great healer.Always good to remember: if it seems too good to be true, it probably isn’t true.