FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Director of Development & Community Outreach
Familylinks Brings Awareness to National Older Americans Month
COVID-19 restrictions create additional difficulties for seniors
Pittsburgh, PA, May 14, 2020 … During National Older Americans Month in May, Familylinks is highlighting the added difficulties for seniors related to COVID-19 by reminding everyone to connect with older relatives, friends and neighbors to identify those in need. Familylinks serves more than 4,000 seniors through the Allegheny County OPTIONS Program and the agency’s Vintage Senior Services. Through telehealth and dedicated volunteers, Familylinks continues to provide essential care management and meal delivery services within Pennsylvania’s COVID-19 guidelines.
Dr. Marianne DiMatteo, Chief Operations Officer at Familylinks, commented, “At Familylinks, we are always focused on the needs of seniors as an important element of our family-centered roster of services. They are more likely to be isolated during COVID-19, even as our region moves to the yellow designation. To maintain our commitment to seniors, our OPTIONS care managers are using telemedicine and phone conversations to identify and respond to seniors who may be experiencing anxiety and depression along with day-to-day concerns for food, medicine, utility payments and other practical issues.”
She continued, “In addition, our dedicated staff and volunteers at Vintage Senior Services have provided food and 1,650 meals to seniors in just two months, and made 2,767 wellness calls which continue on a regular basis. After the Governor’s directive on March 16 required Vintage to suspend onsite group activities for seniors, the staff still found a way to support seniors in the community by implementing proactive outreach activities. Anyone seeking information on these and other essential support programs can call Familylinks at 1-866-583-6003 or visit our website at www.familylinks.org. Our compassionate staff is ready to help.”
The Allegheny County OPTIONS program allows individuals to receive services and supports in their homes and communities. Through OPTIONS, Familylinks care managers serve more than 1,800 seniors by providing customized support to help older adults remain in their homes and communities. Those supports may include coordination of services, in-home meals, family caregiver support, home health services, in-home household assistance, and personal care services. They also respond to seniors who have immediate needs for assistance and intervention.
Familylinks is a nonprofit organization committed to building healthy communities by strengthening individuals and families through the provision of comprehensive, quality services. By believing in the worth of those served, Familylinks assures that all children, families and seniors in western Pennsylvania have the tools they need to be healthy, happy and strong for life. Last year alone, the agency served nearly 10,000 people. These individuals range from children to seniors, in a variety of neighborhoods,
income groups and beliefs. They all have one thing in common - when they turn to Familylinks in their time of need, we are here for them. To learn more, visit www.familylinks.org.