In-Home and Other Supporting Services

 

If you wish to stay in your own home, but need assistance with certain tasks, this section will help you identify the types of services available to seniors.  Service prices vary, so be sure to check with several providers to compare prices.  Ask providers if they offer a senior discount or a sliding fee scale.

Support services for "aging in place" in East King County can be located by referring to the East King County Senior Resource Guide.  There are local social service agencies that can direct you to services that may best fit your needs.  Refer to page 1-2 of the Senior Resource Guide. 

Homemaker Services

These services offer light housekeeping, laundry, meal preparation, and shopping.  Fees vary depending on the services provided, usually charging a hourly rate.  Refer to page 29-30 of the Senior Resource Guide.

Delivery Services

These services deliver a variety of items, including groceries, prescription drugs, and library books.  Some local grocery stores also offer home delivery for a small fee.  Services available will vary depending on your location.  Refer to pages 5, and 29-30 of the Senior Resource Guide. 

Meals

  • Meals on Wheels - Volunteers deliver a hot meal to home-bound people who are unable to prepare their own meals.  Refer to page 4 of the Senior Resource Guide.
  • Senior Dining Programs - Senior dining programs (also called "congregate dining") offer nutritious, low-cost meals in a group setting.  These meals are usually provided five days a week by a variety of organizations, such as senior centers, religious organizations, and social service agencies.  Refer to page 5 of the Senior Resource Guide.

Home / Yard Maintenance

  • Chore Services - These programs provide help with lawn mowing, cleaning gutters, minor home repairs, interior painting, and other routine chores.  Refer to pages 33-34 of the Senior Resource Guide.
  • Commercial Lawn Care - These businesses offer a range of services, including lawn mowing, planting, and pruning.  Fees vary based on the type and frequency of service.
  • Volunteer or Neighborhood Help - Some teen programs and volunteer groups offer free or low-cost yard maintenance to seniors.  Also keep in mind that neighborhood teens may be available to help with lawn mowing for a reasonable fee.  (it's important to agree on a price before the work begins to avoid later misunderstandings.)

Home Health Care

The following types of home health care services are available to seniors through home health care agencies. Fees vary with the type of service, frequency of visits, length of visit, and income level. Refer to pages 30-31 of the Senior Resource Guide.

  • Home health aides provide assistance with bathing, dressing, using the toilet, and other personal care tasks.  They are supervised by a registered nurse.
  • Home nursing care can include administration of medication, wound care, health education, and monitoring of health situations.
  • Personal care assistance includes help with eating, dressing, bathing, toileting, transfer and mobility, grooming, meal planning and preparation, managing finances, errands, getting around in the community, or assistance with medications.  These services are available to people through licensed and non-licensed agencies, or from individuals who contract for this work.  Fees vary with the type and length of service.
  • Therapeutic care can include physical, speech, and occupational therapy, and is available from certified home health care agencies.

Caregiver Support Services

Assistance for family or informal caregivers of older persons is available from a variety of places within the local community including faith-based organizations, health and social services providers, counties, disease organizations, etc. Assistance may include information, assistance connecting to services and support, in and out-of-home respite, counseling, education and special equipment. These services are typically low-cost and affordable services. They help the caregiver provide good care while maintaining a balanced lifestyle. Refer to pages 31 of the Senior Resource Guide.

Adult Day Services (Day Care)

Facilities offering adult day services provide health, nutritional, and social services for persons with physical or cognitive needs. Some of these facilities provide specialized care (e.g., for memory loss), and some also provide health monitoring and medication administration. Refer to page 32 of the Senior Resource Guide.

Transportation

There are many types of transportation services available for seniors from METRO/public transit to private volunteer ride services. Some service organizations provide escorts to accompany older adults and help with transportation, shopping, carrying packages, etc. A fee is generally charged for this service. Refer to pages 47-48 of the Senior Resource Guide.

  • Hospital / Clinic / Health Insurance Transportation Services - Some hospitals, clinics, and health insurance providers offer rides to and from their facilities for seniors who are not able to arrange other transportation.  An advance appointment is usually required.
  • Senior Center / Social Service Agency Transportation Services - Some senior or community centers offer van or bus transportation to the center and to varies other locations, including shopping and field trips.
  • Many social service agencies also provide rides to seniors for medical appointments, personal business, visits to senior centers, etc.  These agencies sometimes use volunteers who drive their own cars, or staff who drive handicapped-accessible vans or buses.
  • Private Transportation Services - A number of for-profit companies offer transportation services using cars, taxis, or vans.  Some vehicles are equipped to handle wheelchairs.

Safety

Refer to pages 33 of the Senior Resource Guide for personal identification and emergency response services. Consult family and friends, or use an internet search engine to find home security systems.

  • Personal Emergency Response Services - These services allow seniors to call for help in a medical or other emergency using a signaling device that is worn around the neck or wrist.
  • Home Security Systems / Police or Fire Alert - These systems are installed by private companies.  For an additional monthly fee, the system will automatically alert the police or fire department in case of an attempted break-in or a fire.
  • Telephone Reassurance - Some hospitals, faith communities, and nonprofit agencies offer a service in which volunteers call seniors at home daily to check on their well-being, or seniors call at a specified time each day to let a volunteer know that they are okay.

Other Types of Assistance

  • Case Management - This service helps seniors and their families identify and obtain appropriate services to meet their needs.  It is usually provided by social workers or public health nurses.  Fees may vary.  Refer to pages 31 of the Senior Resource Guide.
  • Bill-paying Services - Many banks, social service agencies, money-management services, and accounting firms will contract to pay a senior's regular monthly bills for a fee.  Automatic withdrawals are also an option, as is electronic bill-paying for those who have a home computer and access to the Internet.
  • Paperwork - Some social service agencies will arrange to have someone manage a senior's insurance applications, Medicare claims, and income tax fillings.  Other services may include setting up and maintaining a filing system, creating a budget, letter writing and troubleshooting with service providers.  Refer to page 35 and page 48 of the Senior Resource Guide.
  • Insurance Appeals - Some social service and legal agencies assist seniors who have been denied coverage or who are having other difficulties with insurance carriers.
  • Legal Assistance - Referrals to attorneys who specialize in senior legal issues and who charge regular rates for their services.  Refer to pages 36 - 38 of the Senior Resource Guide.

Click here to download the East King County Senior Resource Guide (Prepared by Overlake Hospital Medical Center and Evergreen Hospital Medical Center)