State urges programs for seniors

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - State eldercare leaders are recommending that Oklahoma senior citizens stay out of nursing homes and in their own homes for as long as possible.

Among alternatives are home health care services, adult day care centers and assisted-living centers.

Claire Dowers, programs' supervisor with the Oklahoma Aging Services Division, envisions a new type of counselor working with seniors and their family to offer in-depth evaluations of long-term care options.

The eldercare leaders met today in support of Project 2020, a national initiative that includes both long-term options counseling and nursing home diversions.

Dowers says making sure home health care services are readily available could mean fewer seniors wind up in nursing homes. That would mean expenditures for Medicare and Medicaid would go down.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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