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Have you broached the subject of her moving closer to you or other family? Sometimes it becomes embarassing for independent seniors to ask for help, so they mask their inability to live alone.
If she refuses, she really does need a safe environment. Assisted living is a good start if she is mobile and has few medical issues. A nursing home provides more medical care, etc. There are also more socializing opportunities at these facilities. I think that we sometimes forget the "holisitic" approach to caregiving: body, mind, spirit.
Good luck...I tried long-distance caregiving for awhile...very difficult...your grandma really does need someone who can advocate for her locally.
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KC - Contact the Area Agency on Aging in the county where your grandmother lives. Tell them of your concerns and that you need someone to help evaluate her ability to live alone. They should be aware of the services and facilities available nearby. You might also contact any assisted living centers to understand what sort of "move-in" services they can provide to her. If she's private pay, you'll be surprised at the length they'll go to help her.
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KC:

Besides your mom -- or dad -- does she have any other children that can help? You don't say much about grandma except that she's depressed.

Whenever you get a few days off, drop by and find out exactly what her needs are before taking on such a huge responsibility all by your lonesome. Instead of thinking rationally, you seem to be following your heart and acting on impulse. So get informed first. For starters, browse every link on this website; then go to nationalresourcedirectory.gov.

The best way to help your grandma is to help her learn or re-learn how to care for herself from the comfort of her own home.

Good luck.

-- ED
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