Many free and low-cost services and benefits are available to seniors in Arkansas, but they are not always easy to find, combine, or apply for. For this very reason, the Arkansas Association of Area Agencies on Aging (5A) incorporates all of that information and assistance together in one, accessible place. We consist of eight regional Area Agencies on Aging, each of which offers its own combination of services and assistance for seniors in their area.
We are proud of serving the aging Arkansas population, their families, and their caregivers for over forty years. What does the Arkansas Association of Area Agencies on Aging do? As much as possible to make sure Arkansans age on their own terms and their caregivers have the resources they need.
Information on Aging
If you are part of the aging Arkansas population (60+), or you are caring for an aging loved one, your local Area Agency on Aging can help you find the information on aging you need. Connect with an Information and Assistance Case Manager by contacting your local Agency about the programs available in your region. They will discuss your particular circumstances and needs with you and help you make an appointment with a personal Case Manager.
Case Managers are permanently assigned to a client’s case. They will contact you to schedule a time to assess your health and care needs as well as determine which of the many services and programs available in your area are the best fit for you. The same Case Manager will remain with you throughout the entire care program process. They may also refer you to other resources and services outside of the Agency as the need arises.
Case management and information services are always free of charge. We enjoy putting you in touch with the resources you need and walking you step-by-step through the application process for each program or benefits package.
What Does the Arkansas Association of Area Agencies on Aging Do?
5A offers a variety of resources and programs for seniors all over Arkansas. Services are provided by region and depend on availability. Many of our local Agencies offer:
- Care Coordination,
- Home Care Services,
- Family Caregiver Support,
- In-Home Respite Care,
- Ombudsmen Programs,
- Senior Centers,
- Non-Emergency Medical Transportation,
- Meals on Wheels,
- Personal Care Services, and
- Veteran Assistance.
Our Care Managers are trained to provide all the information you need about the benefits and services available in your area for which you are eligible. The main goal of care coordination is helping the aging Arkansas population remain healthy, independent, and in their own homes for as long as possible.
Your Care Manager acts as a single point of contact for the evaluation, monitoring, and meeting of your physical, medical, mental, and emotional needs. They are also qualified to help walk you through the benefits application process and answer any questions you may have about your eligibility.
Home Care Services
The goal of all our Agencies’ home care services is to help seniors stay in their homes for as long as possible. All of our in-home care plans are created by a licensed registered nurse (RN) who works with you, your family, and your physicians to assess and attend to your specific needs.
Once your home care plan has been created and approved, you will receive care from a Certified Home Care Assistant working under the direct supervision of an RN.
Services will vary depending on each senior’s needs but may include help with:
|Personal hygiene||Housework||Shopping||Transportation||Meal preparation|
|Pet assistance or care||Medication assistance||Dressing||Laundry||Socialization|
We offer programs designed to help fill the gap for seniors who did not qualify for services through Medicaid, the VA, or private insurance programs. Some services are available for free or a reduced cost; others may operate on a fee-for-service basis. The initial evaluation is free. We will always inform you of any costs upfront, so you have an opportunity to consider and ask any questions you may have.
Family Caregiver Support
Most Agencies offer caregiver support groups for individuals caring for an aging loved one. Taking time for yourself to prevent burn out is vital — not practicing self-care does your loved one and yourself a disservice. Pre-registration is not required for support groups unless you need someone to watch your loved one while you attend.
We also offer the Family Caregiver Grant Program. These grants provide financial help for family members caring for an elderly loved one. Grants are also available to help pay for respite care, allowing caregivers to take a break and tend their own lives.
In-Home Respite Care
We developed dedicated, in-home respite care services to give caregivers a much-needed break to care for themselves, their own homes, and their families. In-home respite care can allow a caregiver anywhere from a few hours to a few days a week to rest and recuperate.
Our in-home caregivers are all highly-trained in-home aides and supervised by an RN. You can feel confident your loved one is in good hands, and take care of yourself. Remember, you cannot care for others if you do not care for yourself first.
Ombudsmen are volunteers who advocate for the safety, health, wellbeing, and rights of the residents who reside in residential care, assisted living, nursing homes, or long-term care facilities.
Ombudsmen meet with the residents, ask them questions, and listen to complaints. If there are any serious infractions or matters, a regional Ombudsman is informed and helps decide on the appropriate next steps.
The Senior Centers provided by our agencies offer a variety of programs — from sewing circles and book clubs to workout classes — designed to keep senior citizens active. Free, hot lunches are provided, and most senior centers offer transportation services to and from the centers.
These centers also provide home-delivered meals to aging Arkansas who are homebound or cannot prepare their own food.
Personal care includes assistance with ADLs such as:
In addition, our in-home care aides can help with light housework, meal prep, transportation, socialization, and more. Personal care services can keep an elderly person independent in their own home for much longer.
This program is designed to assist veterans with their personal care and health needs. We can walk you through the application process for veteran benefits and assistance and provide legal aid if needed.
For More Information About Services for Aging Arkansans
Have questions about what the Arkansas Association of Area Agencies on Aging does or how we provide for the aging Arkansas population? Contact your local Area Agency on Aging, and they will connect you with the resources you need for information on aging!