Mississippi has a senior problem. Of the 400,000 people over the age of 65 who live in the state, 13.5% of them are living below the poverty line. That is the highest rate in the entire country. The Mississippi Division of Aging and Adult Services thus has to take care of these people who, if left on their own, might not be able to make it. The department recognizes this and is ?dedicated to keeping pace with the needs of the state's older citizens and to improving their quality of life.?
-- Adult Day Care: Daily programs for functionally impaired elder adults.
-- Alzheimer’s and Related Disorders Support Groups: Monthly meetings for people suffering with dementia-related issues.
-- Homestead Exemption: Waiving property taxes for some senior homeowners.
-- In-Home Services: Helping frail seniors who still live in their own home with such activities as meal preparation, cleaning, bathing and grooming.
-- Legal Assistance: Legal advice, consultation and representation for seniors.
-- Mississippi Medicare Assistance Patrol Project: Information and outreach to seniors on Medicare issues.
-- Older Adult Nutrition Program: Home delivered and group meals.
-- Ombudsman Program: An advocate for residents of long-term care facilities.
-- Recreation: The state encourages seniors to enjoy the mild climate and take part in all of the recreation activities Mississippi offers.
-- Senior Community Service Employment Program: Training and job placement for low-income seniors who need to work.
-- Transportation: Some 300 vehicles available to take seniors to medical appointments, shopping trips, senior centers, etc.
-- Valley Pak Meals: For those not eligible for home delivered meals, a monthly fee for frozen meals that can be reheated.
If there is one thing that medical experts and advocates for seniors can agree upon is that a medical alert system is a necessity for seniors living alone. Such a system can save your life in the event of a medical emergency.
Let’s say you fall down and can’t get up; not to be cliché, but that happens to seniors every day. In fact, a third of all seniors will suffer a serious fall every year. If you are alone and do not have a medical alert system, you could lay there for hours or days, and the results could be tragic. With a medical alert system, you just have to press your emergency button and help will be at your doorstep in minutes. It has been shown that the sooner you get help, the more likely you are to make a full recovery from your injuries.
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