My mom recently had hip surgery after a nasty fall. She is currently in a skilled nursing facility and may be released to go home soon. She lives alone in an unassisted living apartment complex. She cannot afford to live in an assisted living facility, so that is not an option. We would like her to be able to live on her own back in her own apartment. What can we do to ensure her safety in her place when we are not there? She is on Medicare. I have POA for both her financial and medical. Thanks

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There's a lot left out of this question, such as how far away family members are, and what your mother's abilities/disabilities are and were apart from the recent surgery, and what kinds of help she usually requires. One thing I can suggest is, if you haven't already done so, get her an alert system so that she can contact family members or 911 if she should fall or if she becomes ill and can't get to the phone. By mother has had an alert pendant and has used it quite a few times, because she has a problem with falling.
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Need WAY more info to give a good answer.
What floor does she live on?
Is there an elevator if it is more than 1 floor?
Are the bathrooms large enough to handle a walker and or a wheelchair?
Can she shower or bathe safely?
Are there grab bars place in the bathroom by the toilet and shower/bathtub?
Can carpet be removed if she has carpeting? Moving a walker or a wheelchair over carpet is difficult and may pose a trip hazard.
How and or why did she fall?
Is she loosing balance? If so for what reason.

As you can see there is a lot of information that is necessary to answer this question.
You can contact the Social Worker where she is now and ask if there is someone that can come to the apartment and make an assessment to determine what needs to be done to make it safe or I should say safer. While these companies charge a fee for the assessment if you can do the work yourself the cost will be less.
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Get the medical alert device that lets you know when she has fallen. Get dorm sized fridge, freezer, and microwave for her bedroom if she is a night eater and tends to wander around at night. Walk from her bed to the toilet and see anything she could grab as she is falling that would break and allow her to fall (like towel bars). Remove all sharp edged furniture. Get the raised toilet seat with arms! That's a start. I will think of more later
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Raylin is incorrect. Assisted Living charges the same amount regardless of income. Unless you live in another country. There are sometimes financial assistance available through veteran's programs or (depending on the state) Medicaid assistance, but it is still expensive. However, I would ask the social worker at the nursing home if they can do an assessment of your mother's apartment. Generally, they will not charge you for that. You will then know what is important to do for your mother's safety.
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Medicare should pay for some Home Health visits from an RN and a PT. They can assess her needs. Call the social worker at the facility for a recommendation. Meanwhile, visit during the therapy session to get a better idea of her mobility.
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She may need a shower chair with arm rests as well as an over the toilet commode with arm rests. My 94 year old mom fractured her hip 2 years ago. She still uses the commode instead of hand rails plus it sits high in order to stand up. After rehab she needed several weeks more of PT.
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In home cameras can also help with keeping an eye on her. I assume there is no dementia involved.
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I worked for a Visiting Nurse assoc. that leased medical equipment. Here r some ideas.

A shower chair and a hand held skower head. You can get an extra long tubing for these and a holder that can be put down on the wall so a person sitting has easy excess. If soap dishes are too high some stores will have suction cup ones. I found one that was to hold a cup and toothbrushes. My friend used it for her shavers and bottle of shampoo.

I would not recommend a high riser for some who needs rails which ur Mom may need. You can use a commode for this purpose. The back bar can be taken of and the lid and seat can be lifted up or taken off since the commode has these. There is a splashguard that is put in place of the bucket. The commode legs cab be adjusted for height. This way the person has the handles to help push up and the cmmode legs make for good support

Bars should be put in the tub. I know people won't agree but the suction ones are a good alternative till u can have bars installed.

For her bed there is a bar you can get to help her pull herself up. It goes under the mattress for support. It also helps with not falling out of bed. It is only 18 in wide so doesn't hinder them from getting out of bed. You may want to consider a hospital bed but if u don't want to go this way then get a six in boxspring. That way if Mom does fall out of bed, she has a shorter distance to fall.

If she is wheelchair bound, make as much as you can excessable to her. My girlfriend used her bottom cabinets for dishes and such and used her top ones for things she didn't use on a daily basis.

Hope these help
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You can get an occupational therapist to evaluate home setting and suggest adaptations for safety and easier living environment.(Facility where she is now should offer this service) Additionally, don't know where Raylin got info about assisted living being based on income. Most are expensive and not for fixed income clients. Some have a limited number of spaces for people with lower income. State homecare services ARE based upon income and charge on sliding scale. Contact your local AOA for a needs assessment. She can receive help to stay in her home.
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If you get an alarm for falls etc make sure if it is a pendant that they will sleep with it on - a lady I know took hers off for a nap then woke needing to go to bathroom - tripped & fell - 2 to 3 days on floor with broken arm etc - we found that there is a wrist band for these devices [bought hers at Walmart jewelry counter & staff switched it for us] - but again must sleep with it on - at least she will have a choice

Having her pick which items [like above] after YOU narrow choices may make her more friendly to changes - say 'mom, I have done research & here's your best options ... which would you like?' - no person likes things thrust upon them so this will help her adjust -

Also if a rental, can you do much change? - however the landlord may put up shower bars etc. as they can write it off as business expense then when she moves out her place will be a 'senior friendly' rental - see if they will help because you never get a 'yes' to a question you don't ask!

There is a relatively inexpensive device that goes under a toilet to raise it up - the toilet is removed - this unit is bolted in & toilet bolted on top - also have seen a unit that goes between toilet & toilet seat that raises height - it is amazing how much difference 2 to 3 inches makes - ask occupational therapist for suggestions - here's another place for her to choose from options like the height as what might be good for you may not be for her

If she has a double bed or bigger that takes lots of room in her bedroom think about switching to a single bed against the wall to give more manouvering room there - rent a hospital bed for her if you can find a good price - here Red Cross rents them - this might be temporary while she heals - place a small TV where she can watch it comfortably as she will be used to this while in rehab
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