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How a Geriatric Care Manager Ensures Your Loved One is Well Taken Care Of

November 08, 2021

Christine O’Connor felt lost. Her husband, who has advanced stage Alzheimer’s disease, was being released from a geriatric psychiatric care hospital and she was desperately searching for a way to get him transitioned to a nursing home close to their home. After contacting the facility numerous times with no luck she was frustrated and ready to give up.

Then, by chance, she met Deidre Sommerer at a social event.  Sommerer, a Geriatric Care Manager with Hartford HealthCare’s Center for Healthy Aging, listened to O’Connor’s plight and was determined to help.

“I was really in a panic with no idea where to turn,” O’Connor said. “My calls to the facility where I was trying to get my husband into were not being returned. It was a very difficult situation, but then I happened to meet Deidre. From the minute I met her she was on my case giving me information and direction.  She was simply amazing.”

Hartford HealthCare’s Geriatric Care Managers advocate for their clients and connect them to services and resources when family members or loved ones need additional support.  The services they provide include:

  • Visiting clients regularly to ensure they are safe, eating properly, and taking their medications.
  • Attending medical appointments to facilitate better communication and follow-up, including transportation.
  • Evaluating and managing in-home care support needs.
  • Coordinating and plan for respite, assisted living or permanent care facility placement.
  • Helping to arrange for private hire caregivers in the home.

Within a few days after meeting O’Connor, Sommerer was able to visit her husband for an evaluation, connect him with a social worker and soon helped facilitate his transition to the skilled nursing facility of O’Connor’s choice. Although this was just part of Sommerer’s job, it felt to O’Connor like she had her own personal guide navigating her through a storm.

“Having Deidre was invaluable to me and my husband,” she said. “She was an advocate for us, making sure we were connected every step of the way and she still does, checking in with me regularly. I want everyone to know about this wonderful service. I truly believe that if it wasn’t for Deidre’s professionalism, persistence and diligence my husband would not be in the facility of my choice and close to my home right now. What a great resource in difficult times.”

For more information about Hartford HealthCare’s Geriatric Care Management services, click here.