Assisted Living Saved My Mom in Oregon

A couple weeks ago I had the pleasure of traveling to Oregon to speak at three assisted living communities across the state.  I posted some pictures of the event on the Inside Elder Care Facebook page at  Brookdale brought me up from California to visit three communities—all from distinct areas within Oregon.  They were:

  • Albany – small towns set in an agricultural area just southeast of Portland
  • McMinnville – right in the center of Oregon wine country
  • Gresham – at the base of Mount Hood (yes, I was cold)

At each community, I gave a talk entitled Assisted Living Saved My Mom—a presentation communities ask me to give that provides an insider’s view about how to determine which assisted living community is best for your family.  Assisted Living Saved My Mom shares many techniques that uncover information you would never get from just speaking to an admissions director.  Brookdale provided a copy of my book to each who attended—something appreciated by the attendees.  Based on the large amount of feedback I received from attending families and people in the industry, the message really hit home and benefited many people.

Despite the obvious differences in the locations of each of these communities, I found a few things in common:

  • Warm and friendly: nearly every person I met—from the staff to the residents—were very welcoming and warm.
  • Pride: there is a strong sense of pride in the residents that carried over to their feeling that it was their responsibility to make new residents comfortable.
  • Camaraderie: I got the feeling that the residents genuinely enjoyed each other’s company. You could tell because they all knew each other’s little quirks and habits—something they found amusing.

One thing that came up repeatedly was the concern over “How do I pay for this stuff?” Many people were surprised there were other payment options beside just selling their house and paying cash.

When I wrote the By Families, For Families Guide to Assisted Living, I interviewed nearly 200 families to ask them about the concerns related to assisted living and elder care.  The issue of paying for elder care came up as a primary concern from almost three-quarters of those families.

The financial issues are the elephant in the room.  Most people don’t know how to solve them or even where to start, because there is no holistic guide for families on how to navigate these issues.  I am a month or two away from releasing my second book that gets into these answers—the feedback from those that have seen it has been really positive.  Stay tuned.

Orange County Speaking Dates for “Assisted Living Saved My Mom”

Happy New Year everyone!  I hope everyone had a great holiday and is excited for a fun and positive 2010.

Just a quick note to let you know that I will be presenting “Assisted Living Saved My Mom” at Brookdale Senior Living in Irvine, California.  Irvine is in the middle of Orange County, about 35 minutes south of Los Angeles.

A Unique Presentation

Designed for families and industry professionals, “Assisted Living Saved My Mom” is a unique and interactive presentation that shares how families can make a positive experience out of assisted living.  I share  tips for families that you will not hear in other places and can only be said because my family lived it.  In fact, there are a few parts that make the assisted living provider a bit uncomfortable.  Why? Because you’ll learn the tough questions to ask!

Peace of Mind

You’ll leave this presentation confident in your ability to (a) decide whether assisted living is right for your family, and (b) if it is, how you can take the bull by the horns and make it a good thing.

Brookdale will be providing at no cost autographed copies of my book series “The By Families, For Families Guide to Assisted Living” to all who attend.

Here’s the info – I really hope to see you there:

Wednesday, January 13th @ 6pm
Brookdale – Inn at the Park
10 Marquette
Irvine, CA
(located across from the UC Irvine Campus)

(949) 854-3766

For RSVPs, please email Beth Otterbein –

Dr. Kevin O’Neil Helps Keep Your Brain in Shape

In this Leaders in Elder Care interview, I had the privilege to speak to Dr. Kevin O’Neil.  I first met Dr. O’Neil at Brookdale’s Brain Symposium a few months ago at UCLA, where I left quite impressed with the his approach to brain fitness and brain health.  Dr. O’Neil combines a deep understanding of both the science behind brain health and the practical advise that non-doctors require to do something about.  Congratulations, Dr. O’Neil, for being a Leader in Elder Care.

I hope you all enjoy the interview.

About Dr. Kevin O’Neil

Dr. Kevin O’Neil is the Medical Director for Brookdale Senior Living (BSL), the largest senior housing provided in the United States. Dr. O’Neil practiced and taught geriatric medicine for over 27 years (seven years in Massachusetts and 20 years in Sarasota, FL).  A graduate of Boston College and Georgetown University School of Medicine, he completed his internship in Internal Medicine at the Washington Hospital Center and his residency at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center.  He was formerly an assistant professor of medicine at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center and is currently a Clinical Professor in the Department of Aging at the University of South Florida.

He is certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine and holds a Certificate of Added Qualifications in Geriatric Medicine. He is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians and is a member of the American Geriatrics Society and the American Medical Directors Association.

Dr. O’Neil is co-editor and a contributing writer to Optimal Aging Manual, which Art Linkletter has called “the great master book for the boomers.”

Inside Elder Care to Appear at Brookdale’s Brain Symposium

Brookdale Senior Living has invited me to be one of only a handful of resources at their groundbreaking “Cross-Train Your Brain” Conference.

The conference will take plan on May 12, 2009 at UCLA and will focus on elder memory issues and how to keep the mind strong and sharp.  They event will open with a keynote address by Dr. Gary Small, MD, memory expert and author of several books including his latest, “iBrain: Surviving the Technological Alteration of the Modern Mind.”

Brookdale has put together what I expect to be a VERY informative set of breakout sessions, including:

  • Nutrition and Brain Fitness
  • Tai Chi
  • Making Music for Brain Health
  • Yoga for the Brain
  • Stress Management and Brain Health
  • Brain Fitness
  • Jogging for the Brain

The event will close with an address from Dr. Kevin O’Neil, MD entitled “Cross-Train Your Brain.”

I am obviously pleased to be one of the handful of elder care resources on display at the event.  Brookdale will be raffling off a number of copies of the “By Families, For Families Guide to Assisted Living.”

I’ll be donated a portion of all book purchases to the Alzheimer’s Association.