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OCCK has joined with KU Alzheimer’s Disease Center
OCCK has joined KU Alzheimer’s Disease Center (The University of Kansas Medical Center) to participate in and offer to North Central Kansas counties the Reducing Disability in Alzheimer’s Dementia or RDAD. RDAD is an in-home program supporting caregivers and providing mobility techniques to improve the overall health of the person cared for.
According to the Alzheimer’s Association there is an estimated 5.2 million Americans that have Alzheimer’s and there is currently no proven treatment to prevent, cure or slow the disease. By 2025 it is expected that 7.1 million people will be affected by the disease. The likelihood of developing Alzheimer’s disease for adults with Down syndrome is 50% or more.
There is hope; in 2011 the KU Alzheimer’s Disease Center was launched with an initial grant from the National Institute on Aging and this grant was renewed in 2016. Over 100 investigators are working on new ways to fight the disease.
As part of the RDAD grant collaborative with KU, funded in part by a grant from the US Department of Health and Human Services Administration on Community Living; OCCK is able to provide the RDAD in home support program to North Central Kansans as part of OCCK’s ongoing commitment to all people with disabilities and the communities they live in.
Who can participate?
- People with significant memory problems due to dementia or anyone with an intellectual/developmental disability who has or may be at risk for dementia and their caregivers.
What does participation include?
- Having a trained professional come to your home for 5 or more visits and 2-3 phone calls depending on caregiver needs. The home visits last about an hour and the phone call 5-10 minutes.
- The trained professional will work with the caregiver and the person they care for to improve challenging situations. Caregivers may be informal family supports, spouses or paid supports.
- Participants will be loaned a computer tablet with instruction videos that lead them through light mobility activities.
- Caregivers will be asked to complete 3 surveys about the sessions.
How do I get more information, or ask to participate?
- You can call OCCK Inc. directly at 800-526-9731 and ask for Susan Sprague. Or you can email a request on our website at occk.com.
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It is always fun to hear first-hand what participants in RDAD have to say…. Jane shared that the exercises helped to make her legs stronger; Joleen agreed with this statement and added that she has enjoyed doing the exercise and feels better.
The caregiver and participants are encouraged to complete exercises 3 days per week, skipping a day in between. Exercises include strengthening, balance, endurance and flexibility.
Cynthia Ortman is part of OCCK’s residential care staff and was the primary caregiver working with both Joleen and Jane. When asked about her experience as a participant in RDAD and challenges faced by caregivers of individuals with Alzheimer’s, she said that the information and encouragement provided through the RDAD intervention was helpful. In response to the possibility of reducing disability in Alzheimer’s disease, Cynthia states, “When they tell you something is possible…. Go for it and help to make it happen!”