Before Russell discovered PACE, he was having a rough time. He was in and out of the emergency department at Rhode Island Hospital, and had been without housing for a while. “I was using it as a residence, basically,” Russell recalls. His lack of housing, primary care, and medication management had left him unable to continue playing music, which had been his passion since he was young.
A clinician at the hospital saw his situation and recommended he contact PACE. The team at PACE recognized Russell’s immediate medical needs and jumped into action, but they also looked deeper at his history. The social work and life enrichment teams recognized his love of music and saw a chance to take another step in his improvement. So when he needed to come to PACE for medical services, he had a surprise waiting for him: a bass guitar and an amplifier.
Now, Russell comes to the PACE day center 3 days a week. He gets his medicines, interacts with other participants, and eats a nutritious meal. He has his own apartment and gets additional social supports from PACE as well. Mostly importantly, he gets to come play guitar and that helps makes life feel like its back in rhythm for him.
Treating the Whole Person
Medical care covers a broad range of personal needs, but much of the focus is on physical and mental wellness. While these are incredibly important, they are only two pieces of the wellness puzzle. For many older adults in Rhode Island, maintaining meaningful personal and social health is equally challenging.
As family members move away and friends lose touch, these connections become strained or lost. That isolation can lead to other difficulties, such as mental health issues and ongoing loneliness. These are frightening prospects, but as Russell’s story shows, they don’t need to be permanent.
At PACE-RI we know the value of maintaining the health of the whole person. Our team is skilled at recognizing and assisting participants with a range of needs.
- Dementia care
- Day center services
- Rehabilitating injuries
- Medication management
- Social services
These professionals take the time to listen to participants’ stories and get to know them personally, so that our team can address the root cause of the problem and work toward a long-term solution.
Advocating for Older Adults
PACE-RI’s clinical staff and social workers know what it takes to tackle mental health and social concerns in a meaningful way. They deal with these issues time and time again. Issues related to things like:
- Loss and Grief
The health services offered at PACE can make a world of difference in the life of a participant like Russell. The challenges of loneliness, housing insecurity, and mental distress can take a significant toll on the overall health of older adults, and our team works to address each of them when needed. And as the program continues to expand, we look forward to more musicians joining and adding to the harmony.