Listen to Ron's Interview with Robin Marks
When Should Your Loved Ones Choose Another Home?
Moving is never easy—at any age. Most people want to remain in the comfort of their home and neighborhood for as long as possible. But at some point, this may not be safe or practical for our parents, and eventually us, of course. At the same time, moving to some form of supportive housing may be a better choice, helping us lead a healthier and more enjoyable life—as long as we know how to do it right. In this episode, host Ron Roel talks with Robin Marks, an expert in the field of aging—from assisted living to Alzheimer’s—about the many issues to consider when choosing an adult housing community. What level of health care does your loved one need? What types of amenities are important? Will they be close to family and friends—and what kind of social engagement and activities will a senior community provide? How can you identify suitable communities—and be sure you can pay for them? Robin Marks will tackle all of questions, and more, explaining various senior housing options across the aging spectrum, from independent living to programs and resources that serve those with dementia. Her Golden Rule: Always focus on what people can do, not what they can’t.
Robin Marks is Executive Director and CEO of the Alzheimer’s Disease Resource Center, based in Bay Shore, N.Y. Before taking the helm at ADRC two years ago, Robin spent 17 years developing wide-ranging expertise and professional experience in the field of aging. Her tenure as regional director of Amber Court Assisted Living provided first-hand knowledge of the many needs, questions and challenges facing families when their loved ones transition from aging in place—their home—to aging in community, in some form of supportive housing. Robin’s has long advocated individualized strategies to help people choose what institutional support services, amenities, and social environment they need to age successfully. Her programs focus on what people CAN do, not what they can’t do. Robin helped launch the Memory Care annex at Amber Court, and as head of ADRC, Robin continues to embrace a “Not one-size-fits-all” approach to diagnosis and treatment of dementia. This ideology is reflected in ADRC’s therapeutic art, music and equine programs. The organization is also known for its specialized training and support services. A passionate life-long learner, Robin’s training includes a bachelor’s degree with a double concentration — Aging in Society and Multi-Cultural Gerontology. She delivers presentations such as “Alzheimer’s 101” and has co-authored a Caregiver Training Curriculum utilized by Northwell Health at Home. Robin is active with many organizations dedicated to seniors on Long Island and has been widely cited for her expertise in regional publications.
Alzheimer’s Disease Resource Center
The ADRC works with family members, health care professionals and researchers to help provide quality care, training and support to people affected by Alzheimer’s. To find resources on the center’s website, click Let Us Help You.
Here are some additional resources to help find adult care communities across the country:
The site offers a “Find Care” feature designed to help caregivers nationwide locate service providers near them, and an online forum where caregivers can share their experiences and participate in group discussions.
This website offers a Caregiving Resource Center with peer-reviewed articles on more than 50 topics; extensive directories on senior living facilities and home care agencies by state.
The Locator is a nationwide online service provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Administration for Community Living. This tool helps seniors and their caregivers connect to local services for older adults. The site enables users to search by topic and location.
Here are some more resources for Alzheimer’s caregivers and their families.
24/7 Help Line: 800-272-3900
This organization provides services, education and support to those facing Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. The association offers community education programs, in addition to several online tools, including the Alzheimer’s Navigator, which helps caregivers create a personalized action plan.
Alzheimer’s Foundation of America (AFA)
National Toll-free Help Line: 866-232-8484
The New York City-based foundation provides support and services to individuals, families and caregivers affected by Alzheimer’s and related dementias nationwide, as well as funds research seeking better treatments and a cure. It also offers educational webinars, caregiver support groups, and an online Memory Screening Program.