One of our most significant decisions in life is how we’ll be cared for when we can no longer care for ourselves. This guide introduces you to some of the excellent care available within our region.
Aging is a natural part of life, and it eventually comes with day-to-day challenges. So why do we often feel unprepared to tackle the challenges and necessary choices in our later years?
Many families work together to carefully select what’s best for their loved ones well in advance, but it’s not something most are eager to discuss or even think about.
Some people plan ahead to create a smooth transition into their retirement years; others may be forced into quick decisions after an unexpected hospital stay or diagnosis.
With careful research and consideration, it’s possible to find the highest level of comfort and care, whether we face health complications or just need a little help with our daily living.
This region offers many excellent options that meet the housing and health care needs of seniors. These senior residences and health care professionals provide state-of-the-art amenities and individualized plans to cater to your specific needs.
In every corner of the region, our senior communities are creating safe and inviting homes where our seniors can age comfortably with access to quality care. And, today’s health care professionals are combatting the effects of aging with some of the latest technologies and treatments, thus speeding up recovery time and improving daily living.
This guide will assist you and your loved ones in navigating the many options available in senior health care and housing. Our area’s experts describe the most common age-related challenges facing their patients and customers, and some of the solutions available. If someone in your family is looking for a senior community, medical advice or support with daily living, our Northwest Quarterly Senior Health & Living Guide is here to help.
Highview in the Woodlands
1000 Falcon Point Place, Rockton, Ill., (815) 624-6700, Highviewseniorliving.com
If you’re looking for a senior living facility with plenty of longevity and experience, look no further than Highview in the Woodlands.
For over a century now, this nonprofit in Rockton has cared for our region’s elderly, and the commitment continues, in a safe, friendly and caring environment.
“We are the only assisted living and Alzheimer’s care facility that has been open since 1904,” says Carol Cox, chief executive officer. “You can go down the list and you’re not going to find anyone else in this area with that kind of experience. That’s one of the things that makes us unique.”
Highview in the Woodlands’ staff has 88 years of combined experience in geriatric, long-term care.
“The experience and education of the staff at Highview certainly sets us apart,” Cox says.
Both the assisted living apartments and the Alzheimer’s/dementia unit have round-the-clock care, with licensed nurses, certified nurse aids, and support from social services, food service and activities staff.
Highview opened its doors in Rockford in 1904, before opening its current residence in 1999. The facility includes 36 assisted living apartments and 26 private memory care rooms, which are bright, spacious and equipped with call lights. In addition, the entire facility has alarmed exits.
It’s also unique because of its park-like setting in a residential area. Residents can see others coming and going and children playing, just as if they were living in a home of their own. An antique-filled lobby with a fireplace welcomes residents and guests.
The residents do more than spend their time at the facility. They participate in activities and attend events in the area, such as Simple Spring: The Butterfly Exhibit at Nicholas Conservatory & Gardens in Rockford.
Within the Alzheimer’s unit, residents receive additional support in a secure environment. The residents are also under the direction of leadership staff with more than 70 years of combined experience in dementia care.
Residents keep their minds active with a Montessori-approach directed and developed by two certified Montessori teachers, designed to stimulate residents’ memories through practical life activities.
“We have them plant boxes of vegetables and fruit and a garden of flowers,” Cox says. “They remember the flowers, but they might not remember how to grow them. They’ll remember the vegetables, but they might not remember what they tasted like. This approach is therapeutic, and makes them realize they can still do these activities and feel successful.”
Residents in the Alzheimer’s unit have also traveled to the Discovery Center Museum in Rockford.
“They loved it,” Cox says.
Cox also understands that families of Highview’s residents value this kind of support and care, because it’s one less worry for them. It makes it easy for families to get involved, through things like an Alzheimer’s support group for families and residents.
“It’s not about being conveniently close to where your loved ones are, but rather what services are offered,” Cox says. “We may be a little farther away from your home, but they’re getting the care that they need and that’s the most important part.”
Medical Pain Management
The Only Full-Time, American Board of Anesthesiology/Pain Medicine Certified Group of Interventional Pain Management Physicians in the Rockford Area. Discuss a Referral to MPMS With Your Healthcare Provider.
Living with pain is a reality for millions of people today, and it interferes with the ability to enjoy even the simplest of pleasures. At Medical Pain Management Services Ltd. (MPMS), thorough assessment is provided for a variety of acute, chronic and cancer pain diagnoses. Treatment is provided through interventional therapies by physicians specializing in the treatment of pain syndromes.
MPMS nurses are some of the most experienced in the field and understand the unique medical and emotional needs of patients with pain. Acute pain is often your body’s way of telling you that something is wrong; the perception of pain is highly individualized. When pain is not resolved after medical treatment lasting a duration of six months or more, the pain then is considered to be chronic in nature.
Chronic pain often causes dramatic changes in a person’s ability to function and lead a normal life. The providers and staff at Medical Pain Management Services utilize the latest in treatment modalities to address the complexity of all acute, chronic and cancer-related pain conditions.
Early intervention in evaluation and treatment can reduce the impact of pain and restore a patient’s quality of life.
Fairhaven Christian Retirement Center
3470 N. Alpine Road, Rockford, (815) 877-1441, fairhaven.cc
Fairhaven’s mission statement is “to provide a comfortable lifestyle and exceptional care which enhances quality of life in a manner that glorifies God.”
More than Fairhaven 375 residents enjoy a comfortable lifestyle that provides many opportunities. The property includes more than 100 duplexes, nearly 100 independent living apartments, a supportive care center and a health center.
“We’re very committed and never lose sight of why we’re here and who we’re here for,” says Chris Hintzsche, director of marketing and resident services at Fairhaven.
“When people ask me what sets Fairhaven apart, I tell them our Christian focus, continuum of care, wonderful views from large windows letting in lots of natural light, and our dining experience.”
Affiliated with the Evangelical Free Church denomination, Fairhaven offers a lifetime of care to people of all faiths age 62 and up. First Evangelical Free of Rockford now provides a worship service at Fairhaven on Sunday mornings in the Sjostrom Center Chapel. “When people talk about why they’ve chosen to live at Fairhaven, our spiritual focus is among the reasons why they are here,” Hintzsche says.
Fairhaven is in the midst of an extensive common area renewal in the main independent building and in the health center building, with an anticipated completion of Thanksgiving 2017. It will also celebrate 50 years of service to residents and their families in 2018.
“We will be excited to share opportunities to highlight this wonderful anniversary,” says Hintzsche.
A hallmark of Fairhaven’s dining experience is its quality comfort foods, good chefs, and helpful wait staff. “The home-style cooking is what our residents were used to in their own homes, and so we want them to enjoy home-cooked meals here, too,” Hintzsche says.
Inside the main building, where the dining hall is located, residents enjoy an engaging atmosphere that includes a family room with computers, a video chat unit, a library, restaurant-style dining, a gift shop and a fitness center with classes guided by a fitness coordinator.
Residents are invited to participate in special activities such as choirs, bell choirs and educational sessions, and to attend picnics, musical performances and other events. Pets are welcome to visit and may live with duplex residents.
Hintzsche counsels people to visit the retirement communities they are considering, enjoy a meal there, talk to residents and ask them about their experiences.
“Fairhaven residents enjoy a loving, supportive and active community,” says Hintzsche. “They’re genuinely excited when someone new is moving here. They love to share their personal stories and to listen to the stories of others.”
Northern Illinois Retina
Recognized as One of 2017-2018 Best Doctors in America in the Field of Ophthalmology
Susan Fowell, M.D., is a leading ophthalmologist who specializes in the diagnosis and surgery of diseases of the vitreous and the retina. Dr. Fowell graduated college from Northwestern University, in Evanston, Ill., with summa cum laude honors and was elected into Phi Beta Kappa honor society. She then graduated from Northwestern University’s McGaw Medical School in Chicago and was elected into the Alpha Omega Alpha medical honor society. She completed an internship in internal medicine, a residency in ophthalmology and a fellowship in vitreoretinal disease – all at Northwestern University in Chicago. She began her practice in Rockford in 1990.
She is certified by the American Board of Ophthalmolgy and is a member of the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) and the American Society of Retinal Surgeons (ASRS). She has published several articles in peer-reviewed journals, attends two major CME meetings per year, and offers state-of-the-art, university-level care on a full-time basis to Rockford and surrounding communities.
Practice at Northern Illinois Retina is limited to the diagnosis and treatment of diseases affecting the back portion of the eye, the retina, macula and vitreous.
These include but are not limited to macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, ocular trauma, retinal detachment, macular hole, epiretinal membrane and uveitis.
Diagnostic procedures performed in the office include Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT), OCT angiography and fluorescein angiography. In-office surgical treatment includes laser photocoagulation, cryopexy of retinal tears and pneumatic retinopexy for retinal detachment, and intravitreal injections of Avastin, Lucentis 0.3 and 0.5, Eylea, Ozurdex and Iluvien. Intraocular surgeries are performed in the hospital and include scleral buckling surgery, pars plana vitrectomy and membrane peeling.
Our patients are usually referred by other ophthalmic and optometric colleagues, but if you have concerns or questions, please feel free to visit our website (niretina.net) and click on the education tab to learn more about specific eye conditions affecting the retina and its treatment.
414 S. Wesley Ave., Mt. Morris, Ill., (815) 734-4103, pinecrestcommunity.org
The cozy community of Mount Morris, Ill., is home to one of Ogle County’s highest-rated retirement communities, founded by the Church of the Brethren in 1893.
Pinecrest Community has been recognized as one of the best nursing homes in Northwest Illinois by U.S. News & World Report. In addition, Pinecrest has consistently garnered national accolades in recent years by being named a five-star community with the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Most recently, in April 2017, Pinecrest received a deficiency-free rating by federal surveyors.
Residents at the 40-acre continuing care retirement community are able to move through its four residential settings as their needs evolve.
Living in one of the Pinecrest Grove maintenance-free duplex homes affords adults ages 62 and older freedom from lawn care, appliance upkeep and replacement, snow shoveling and more. Residents enjoy their spacious homes without the time burden of maintaining them.
Independent-living apartments at Pinecrest Village offers residents full kitchens, delicious meals, optional activities including exercise classes, travel opportunities, shopping shuttles, a fully equipped woodworking shop, an emergency call system, and general housekeeping.
Pinecrest Manor, intermediate and skilled nursing, offers all private rooms with private bathrooms. Expert care provided by physicians and student doctors from the University of Illinois College of Medicine, KSB hospital and our own staff offers care and assistance 24 hours a day. Residents enjoy the beautiful solarium, lounges, outdoor gardens, organized activities, restaurant style dining, onsite beauty shop, daily chapel services and more.
Specialized memory care is offered in Pinecrest Terrace, a spacious, sunny area that incorporates the latest amenities and resources for those coping with memory loss disorders. Staff receives specialized orientation and training in dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease patient care.
Pinecrest’s in-patient therapy program has repeatedly won Best in Class customer satisfaction rankings from Pinnacle. The awards reflect consistently high praise from therapy clients in both in- and outpatient care in services such as physical, occupational and speech therapy. Residents recuperate in a wing with all private rooms and a private dining room.
Pinecrest is also home to the Grove Community Center. This center is open to the public and houses a wellness center, café, chiropractor, hair salon and auditorium in which the local performing arts guild performs two shows annually. The auditorium is the perfect venue for both elegant and casual weddings, reunions and family gatherings. The fully equipped wellness center is open for public use for a low monthly membership fee.
A nonprofit that is independently owned and operated, Pinecrest supports its residents even in the event of financial hardship. Many residents who have outlived their financial resources benefit from Pinecrest’s Good Samaritan Fund, which was established in 1988 to help cover residents’ cost of care.
Caring. Committed. Christian. We are eager to meet you. Contact us today to arrange a tour and find your next home with us.
Lymphedema Clinic at Brynwood Myofascial Therapy
Lymphedema is a serious condition in which excessive lymphatic fluid collects in the interstitial tissues of the body, due to protein situations in the body that have chemical attraction to water molecules. This abnormal buildup of fluid can cause swelling, pain, discomfort, and feelings of tightness in specific areas of the body or, more generally, throughout the body itself.
Symptoms of lymphedema may include any or all of the following:
• Swelling in the arms, hands, fingers, legs, feet, toes, face/neck, shoulders and abdomen
• Skin indentations that may stay after being pressed (early onset)
• Weakness or heaviness of legs and arms
• Tightness or stiffness of the skin, pain/heat and/or redness of affected areas
• Aching in the neck, shoulders, spine, or hips
• Decreased range of motion in upper and/or lower extremities
• Difficulty fitting into clothing, tight fitting rings, shoes, or watches.
What is Lympathic System?
The lymphatic system plays an integral part in the body’s immune system. It consists of specialized vessels and nodes which help to transport lymph fluid back towards the heart after helping to cleanse the body of metabolic and cellular debris.
There are two types of Lymphedema, Primary and Secondary, with Secondary being more prevalent in society than Primary.
Lymphedema can be caused by multiple attributing sequelae in the body including:
• Cancer that causes a blockage in the lymphatic drain system
• Surgery (removal of lymph nodes) and/or radiation that affect nodes or vessels
• Infection or physical damage to lymph system or nodes
• Scarring in and around vessels/nodes
• Blockage of a vein by clotting, trauma, or other diseases
Typical cancers that bring on an increased incidence of Lymphedema include, but are not limited to, breast cancer, prostate cancer, melanoma, gynecological cancers, lymphoma’s, blood cancers, and sarcoma’s. If left untreated, the accumulation of fluid eventually results in fibrosis (hardening) of the extremity tissues.
How Does Decongestive Therapy Help?
The overall goal of treating lymphedema is to allow the lymphatic system to flow freely once again and this approach is called Decongestive Therapy. The Brynwood Myofascial Therapy clinic focuses on treating the entire person with lymphedema from a Complete Decongestive Therapy model that includes: education, exercise, manual lymphatic techniques, compression/garments, counseling in regards to nutrition/wellness and skin care/hygiene, as well as assist with activities of daily living through compensatory means, if needed.
The overall goals of Brynwood Myofascial Therapy for their patients include: reduction in fluid in a safe manner, improve skin pliability, improve pain, improve range-of-motion, improve self-confidence, and a return to a normal lifestyle. The use of up-to-date evidence-based research and on-going education for the providers at Brynwood Myofascial Therapy allows us to improve the treatments that our patients receive.
Integrated HomeCare Services
5027 Harrison Ave., Rockford, (815) 965-9454, integratedhc.com
For nearly 30 years, Integrated HomeCare Services has been serving the respiratory, sleep therapy and home medical equipment needs of customers in northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin.
The on-site CPAP clinic teaches new and returning sleep apnea patients about their CPAP machines and accessories. Trained respiratory therapists can assist customers in finding the most appropriate oxygen and sleep therapy equipment and make sure you know how to use it properly.
Integrated HomeCare Services also carries walkers, power mobility scooters, wheelchair ramps and other mobility equipment. Integrated’s caring and knowledgeable staff is here to help you will all of your equipment needs.
The power mobility division can assist you with all of your power wheelchair and power mobility scooter needs. Integrated also provides in-home evaluations, assessments and insurance billing.
Thanks to a new office, which will open in Beloit by Dec. 1, Integrated HomeCare Services will reach more people than ever before.
The retail store, which will be located at 2020 Sutler Ave., Beloit, will have a wide range of the products that are available in the Rockford store.
“Customers can purchase supplies like walkers, wheelchairs, sleep therapy equipment, lift chairs, stairlifts, and bath safety equipment,” says Mark Hatch, owner. “We really want to serve the Beloit and Janesville markets with our products and services.”
For your home medical equipment needs, call (815) 227-0202 for referrals; (815) 965-9454 for the retail store; or toll-free at (800) 747-6994.
Crimson Pointe Senior Living
7130 Crimson Ridge Drive, Rockford, (815) 398-7792, lifeatcrimsonpointe.com
The decision to enter assisted living is rarely easy, so the folks at Crimson Pointe Senior Living, in Rockford, hope it’s the last time a family decides where a loved one will live.
“The phrase that is used is ‘aging in place,’” Sales Director Mike Barr says. “It refers to this being such an emotional and difficult decision that you don’t want to make another move.”
With studio and one-bedroom apartments, Crimson Pointe offers many ways to keep its residents in a comfortable environment that includes delicious and nutritional meals and numerous and varied activities. Nursing staff is on site around-the-clock and can assist with simple daily reminders or provide significant personal care. An outside provider offers additional services, such as physical and speech therapy, and in-home care.
“The residents don’t have to go out for rehab, they can participate here with our partners,” says Barr.
Crimson Pointe also helps its veterans, and surviving spouses of veterans, to age comfortably by connecting them with financial support through the Federal Aid-in-Attendance program. Depending on the resident’s situation, assistance can range from $1,100 to $2,100 per month, and can help to make the cost of assisted living more affordable.
Staff members often meet with local community groups to share the importance of planning ahead for retirement living. They offer suggestions about how to narrow your options, how to plan with a relative and when it’s the right time to move.
“None of us have a set idea or guide to plan this process,” says Barr. “It’s such an emotional process for the potential resident and for families that everyone handles it differently.”
Rockford Gastroenterology Associates
Rockford Gastroenterology Associates is one of the largest single-specialty, independent gastroenterology groups in Illinois. For nearly 40 years, RGA has been dedicated to providing the highest level of patient care, and our Center of Excellence delivers a comprehensive, patient-focused approach to meet all of your digestive health needs.
Our board-certified gastroenterologists have trained at renowned international centers, including Cleveland Clinic, Harvard, Mayo Clinic and Stanford. Many have extensive experience in treating specific diseases, received additional training in advanced endoscopic procedures, and have developed special interests. This allows us to deliver the comprehensive care you would expect from a large university center, with the convenience of being close to home.
Through our Center of Excellence, you can be assured that the care you receive is tailored to your specific symptoms or condition. These include colon cancer prevention, the region’s only specialized liver center, swallowing and esophageal diseases, GERD, inflammatory bowel disorders and interventional endoscopy.
Our dedicated staff includes advanced nurse practitioners who utilize their specialized training and extensive clinical experience to help us to provide the best possible patient care.
To learn more about how RGA provides exceptional care to our community, visit rockfordgi.com and like us on Facebook.
111 W. State St., Rockford, (815) 965-0055
Located in the heart of downtown Rockford and overlooking the beautiful Rock River, Luther Center, an income-based Housing and Urban Development (HUD) subsidized building, offers residents apartment-style living options as well as an assisted living program.
“We’re in the center of the quickly growing and developing downtown Rockford area, which is a huge plus,” says Rose Layne, property manager of Luther Center. “The views that we have from the building are beautiful.”
Luther Center has 16 floors with 200 apartments. One-and two-bedroom apartments are available and 29 of the apartments are for assisted living residents.
“Rent is based on 30 percent of your adjusted gross income and applicants must meet income limits set for the building,” Layne says.
The facility also has a laundry room and a bus that takes residents to their doctor’s appointments on designated days. Assisted living staff is available around-the-clock for residents in the program.
Residents can also enjoy a homemade meal in the facility’s dining room.
The Luther Center kitchen staff prepares fresh meals onsite, which are served in the dining room.
One of the best parts about living in the Luther Center is the residents are close to everything.
“They love being part of the community,” she says. “Downtown is just booming with business and new development right now, so it’s a hot spot. There are plenty of things the residents can participate in because our building is right in the center of it all.”
Freeport Home Medical Equipment
307 W. Main St., Freeport, (815) 297-0504, freeporthomemedical.com
Freeport Home Medical Equipment (FHME) takes the stress and hassle out of purchasing your medical necessities.
This retail store specializes in medical supplies and equipment, from accessories such as wheelchair cushions and CPAP masks to equipment such as oxygen concentrators and commodes. At FHME, it’s easy and convenient to make purchases through health savings accounts, insurance or out-of-pocket.
FHME provides a large selection of products designed to improve comfort and safety. From stair lifts, lift chairs and other mobility aids to mastectomy, urological and respiratory supplies and more, all products are carefully researched and selected for their quality. Customers can receive product fittings and trainings before they they make a purchase.
Just a few years ago, FHME became the area’s first provider of products by Inogen, a producer of supplemental oxygen therapy equipment. These cutting-edge respiratory machines replaced the traditional, bulky oxygen tanks and home concentrators with smaller units that create oxygen on the go. They’ve changed the way people live by giving them independence.
FHME also provides home modifications and accessibility services, especially for those who want to age in place.
The professionals at FHME can install entrance ramps, build stair lifts and remodel a bathroom to install accessibility-focused bathroom fixtures such as walk-in bathtubs and showers.
Many items are covered by Medicare, Medicaid and most insurance plans, and FHME will do the paperwork for you.
At Freeport Home Medical Equipment, the primary mission is to bring comfort and safety into your life. Call or visit today.
Oak Street Health
301 E. State St., Rockford, (815) 668-7810, oakstreethealth.com
Oak Street Health, located in downtown Rockford, is not your typical doctor’s office. We do things differently in order to offer our patients a better primary healthcare experience. What sets us apart is our focus on providing the highest quality healthcare tailored to the needs of older adults with Medicare.
When looking to meet the unique needs of our clients with Medicare, our doctors see fewer patients than most doctors, so they spend more time with you. This allows us to take the time to understand our clients’ individual circumstances and develop a comprehensive care plan for you. We offer quick appointment scheduling, reduced wait times, more time spent with your doctor, and transportation to and from your appointment.
With so many plans available, we believe in helping our clients get the benefits that are right for them at a price that fits within their budget. We take time to help our clients fully understand the coverage options available. Our healthcare coordinators are here to help you learn about all that Medicare offers. Many seniors are eligible for certain Medicare benefits but do not know it. We’ll help you access the coverage you need.
With a commitment to serve the community, Oak Street Health is more than a doctor’s office. We are a community center. We’re proud to offer free daily classes and activities, including: movie screenings, bingo, computer training, fitness classes, Medicare education classes, and health education events.
Call Oak Street Health today to get the Medicare benefits you deserve.