Come read Raya’s Paradise blog about assisted living Los Angeles.

A recent Forbes article confirmed what many of us already know, “people often have trouble making plans with their loved ones as they age, which can leave families unprepared to deal with unexpected circumstances.”

Over and over, Raya’s Paradise works with families whose aging parents experience a sudden accident or illness. They then scramble to identify the best option; often failing to thoroughly think through due to time constraints and fears.  “Families must start now to have peace of mind later” the article continues.

Chief Operating Officer and Social Worker of Raya’s Paradise, Monica Westphaln, recommends that the first step is finding a good time to talk to an aging parent. Westphaln advises, “make sure you listen to what they want rather than bringing them a plan.” By taking the time to listen to the needs of an aging parent, Westphaln adds, “you can take preferences into account to help create an individual plan for care.” Involving a loved one in the process ensures that “independence and dignity are simultaneously preserved.” Including a loved one in the conversation assures a loved one they are “important to the family” and enables you to “continue the conversations.” Starting early conversations further reduces stress on families. Westphaln notes, in an event of crisis, families can feel confident that the actions taken are “aligned with the wants and needs of your parent.”

Raya’s Paradise trained team members and clinical professionals are available to provide continuing education to families as needs progress. Those who have joined the Raya’s Paradise family have recognized Raya’s for creating an accessible network of professionals who assist with guidance and direction throughout the aging process.

Published by Staff On January 10, 2019 Author: By Eric Heinz

Raya’s Paradise

With assistance for hospice, dementia, Alzheimer’s disease and independent living care, Raya’s Paradise plans to open its doors by 2020 after years of going through planning processes.

Moti Gamburd, the CEO of Raya’s Paradise, said he acquired the land about five years ago but that it’s been a long process to get the project started. They had to go through San Clemente’s planning process as well as the California Coastal Commission for permitting.

Raya’s was required by the commission to remove trees to make an ocean-view corridor for residents, as well as other mandates. He got the final approvals from the Coastal Commission last year.

Raya’s Paradise will be located on the 100 block of Avenida Calafia, next to the San Clemente Inn. There will be 24-hour care and an assisted-living unit, providing independent living as well as end-of-life care.

Gamburd said he was inspired by his mother, who immigrated to the U.S. from Russia and Israel, to enter the assisted-living industry.

“In 1991, my mom, who is a nurse, came to the United States and took care of an old lady,” Gamburd said. “Because she has experience in the geriatric work, she said if I can take care of one lady, why can’t I take care of six ladies?”

In California, one home can hold up to six people at one time who are not dependents of the title holder.

“At that time, while I was in school, my father got very ill, and I kind of started to help her, and I started to fall in love with this field,” Gamburd said, adding that Raya’s has added six retirement-living facilities in California.

Monica Westphaln, the COO of Raya’s, was working for a competitor in 2011 when Gamburd decided to try to join forces with her.

“She kind of opened my eyes and showed me how much better it would be to build in a larger community,” Gamburd said. “Eventually, we landed on (San Clemente). We hired an architect from San Clemente.”

Read the full article here

 

Hospice is not a place. Hospice is a “concept of care” designed to provide comfort and support to patients and their families when a life-limiting illness no longer responds to cure-oriented treatments.1 The goal of hospice care is to provide patients with comfort and dignity at the end of life with a special emphasis on controlling pain and discomfort and managing symptoms.

The focus is on compassionate caring not curing. Hospice care neither hastens nor prolongs life, but this specialized service has been shown to increase quality of life. Hospice is covered by Medicare and Medicaid and most private insurance companies to eligible patients referred by a physician. Hospice services include care by professionals and volunteers and medication, equipment, and medical supplies. Families have no out-of-pocket expenses other than the cost of room and board.

The patient and family are at the center of hospice care. The hospice team works with the patient and family to develop a personalized plan of care that respects the individual’s end-of-life wishes. A multi-disciplinary team of physicians, nurses, home health aides, social workers, therapists, spiritual counselors, bereavement counselors, and volunteers provides expert and compassionate care that is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Physicians and nurses are specially trained to address pain and manage symptoms. The team works closely with family members to provide feeding, bathing, turning, administering medications, and monitoring changes in a patient’s condition. Some hospice providers provide alternative therapies such as Pet Therapy or Music Therapy. Spiritual counselors, therapists, and social workers help patients and families with emotional and spiritual concerns and provide bereavement support to family members after a loved one has died.

Most people choose hospice care in their own homes, but hospice care is also available in hospitals, nursing homes, and residential care communities for the elderly such as assisted living communities and board and care homes. In 2011, 66.0% of hospice patients received care in the place they call “home,” including private residences (41.5%), skilled nursing facilities (17.2%), and residential communities (7.3%).2 When hospice care is not an option at home, nursing homes, freestanding hospice facilities, and residential care communities like board and care homes are places for families to turn for short-term respite or longer term care at the end of life.

The Board and Care model, which provides residential care for fewer residents in a private home, offers a home-away-from-home in an intimate environment that provides a home-like routine and a place for family to gather. Board and Care homes can offer temporary hospice to residents and families who request it. These homes typically work with a number of hospice organizations to provide families with choice for high quality care. The board and care staff coordinate care with the hospice staff and they may provide bedside comfort tailored to the resident’s needs and preferences, such as soft music, reading, and aromatherapy. “Choosing a hospice to care for yourself or a loved one in the final months or even days of life is an important and stressful process,” said J. Donald Schumacher NHPCO president and CEO. “Each hospice offers unique services and partners with specific community providers – so it’s important to contact the hospices in your area and ask them questions to find the one with the services and support that are right for you.”3

For additional information on hospice and how to select a quality hospice provider, families may turn to online resources found at the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (www.nhpco.org) and the Hospice Foundation of America (www.hospicefoundation.org). References: 1Hospice Foundation of America. www.hospicefoundation.org. 2Facts and Figures: Hospice Care in America. 2013 Edition. National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization. www.nhpco.org. 3Choosing a Quality Hospice. National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization. www.nhpco.org.

 

Trina Duke,

Master of Science in Gerontology Concierge Gerontology Services

Our mother absolutly loved her time at Raya’s Paradise. The facility, staff and management were absolutly excellent in their care of our beloved Margerat .feels at home away from home. Our caring staff provides personalized attention to each resident including bathing, dressing, medication supervision, diabetes control, and incontinence management. W

West Hollywood, California — 04-10-2018 — Raya’s Paradise was certified as a great workplace today by the independent analysts at Great Place to Work®. Raya’s Paradise earned this credential based on extensive ratings provided by its employees in anonymous surveys. A summary of these ratings can be found here.

“We are thrilled to see the results of our efforts to maintain a great company culture,” said CEO Mot Gamburd. “We want our employees to be passionate about their work, represent our core values, and most importantly, feel fulfilled in their work with us and our clients.”

“We applaud Raya’s Paradise for seeking certification and releasing its employees’ feedback,” said Kim Peters, Executive Vice President of Great Place to Work’s Certification Program. “These ratings measure its capacity to earn its own employees’ trust and create a great workplace – critical metrics that anyone considering working for or doing business with Raya’s Paradise should take into account as an indicator of high performance.”

“According to our study, 92 percent of Raya’s Paradise employees say it is a great workplace,” says Sarah Lewis-Kulin, Vice President of Great Place to Work Certification & List Production.

Raya’s Paradise employees completed 64 surveys, resulting in a 90 percent confidence level and a margin of error of ± 2.51.

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About Great Place to Work®

Great Place to Work® is the global authority on high-trust, high-performance workplace cultures. Through proprietary assessment tools, advisory services, and certification programs, including Best Workplaces lists and workplace reviews, Great Place to Work® provides the benchmarks, framework, and expertise needed to create, sustain, and recognize outstanding workplace cultures. In the United States, Great Place to Work® produces the annual Fortune “100 Best Companies to Work For®” list and a series of Great Place to Work® Best Workplaces lists including lists for Millennials, Women, Diversity, Small and Medium Companies and over a half dozen different industry lists.

A study in ‘The Gerontologist’ states that, “approximately one-third of 65-year-olds are single.” That’s a 50% increase since 1980 according to the U.S. Census.

Aging with family and friends has been shown to result in improved health of seniors, including lower chances of cognitive impairment, and hospitalization. Research shows that socialization, companionship and hobby-building has great benefits for seniors: older adults who are surrounded by others are at a decreased risk of both cardiovascular and cognitive decline.

For some seniors, moving into an Assisted Living Community is the first step they can take to help maintain or increase the quality of life as they grow older. In reputable communities, experts in the field of long-term care help coordinate between activities to create communities where older adults are able to create new memories with one another. Residents take on scheduled group hobbies such as yoga, cooking, and artistry while pursing passions both new and old. Assisted Living Communities can act as a hub for seniors to connect and make new friends.

Our advice for making friends in a community? Participate and try out all the opportunities that are available. The goal is to foster an natural feeling of community with residents similar in age and circumstances.

Can the right foods reduce or even reverse Alzheimer’s symptoms? Certified Nutrition Specialist, Amy Berger thinks so. Berger believes that Alzheimer’s is caused by a glucose shortage in the brain, causing brain neurons to degenerate, and leading to the all-too-familiar Alzheimer’s symptoms like memory loss and behavioral changes. In her book, “The Alzheimer’s Antidote: Using a Low-Carb, High-Fat Diet to Fight Alzheimer’s Disease, Memory Loss, and Cognitive Decline”, Berger presents a nutritional and lifestyle intervention approach she claims is designed to combat Alzheimer’s disease. Berger’s research suggests that an effective way to treat Alzheimer’s is through diet and lifestyle changes that improve energy generation in the brain and that a food-based solution to achieve measurable improvements is as simple as a low-carb, high-fat diet.

At Raya’s Paradise, we are always looking to improve and enhance our residents’ lives. Our certified nutritionists design our healthy living menus so as to help minimize the “metabolic dysregulations” that contribute to Alzheimer’s symptoms. We serve three daily meals that are rich in healthy, unprocessed fats and include micronutrient packed vegetables – beneficial for a healthy life and proven through research to help reduce, and even prevent Alzheimer’s and dementia symptoms.

Dementias are degenerative disorders that develop primarily in the nervous system and selectively damage particular areas of the brain. Some dementias, like Alzheimer’s disease affect all areas of the brain simultaneously, while others, such as frontotemporal dementia, affect the parts of the brain involved in controlling one’s communications and emotions. Still others are caused by vascular disease, brain trauma, or chronic alcohol abuse (Korsakoff’s syndrome)

By 2030, 20% of U.S. population will be older than 65 years of age – about 50 million people. Dementia affects 1% to 6% of those older than 65, and between 10% and 20% of those older than 80 years of age. In the next 30 years, estimated 10-20 million seniors in U.S. will have mild to severe forms of dementia.

Seniors with history of moderate traumatic brain injury (TBI) have a 2-3 times greater risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease – those with a severe TBI have a 4-5 times greater risk. Even healthy seniors are at risk for falls and head trauma, so any fall to the head, however minor, should be seen by a medical professional and documented.

Alzheimer’s disease accounts for 65% of all dementias. There is no direct diagnosis of Alzheimer’s – and while PET scans and other imaging techniques are being studied, none have yet been able to show the presence of Alzheimer’s disease.

Alzheimer’s onset often surprises families because vision, movement, and sensation remain untouched while a senior’s memories begin to slowly decrease. Recent memories are affected first, leading to “senior moments” that appear innocent because all other memories, including those from decades ago, remain intact. Eventually those remote memories begin to fade, and lastly the senior’s “crystallized” memories, such as family member’s names and faces, are compromised.

 

By David L. Raffle, PhD
Clinical and Forensic Neuropsychologist

www.RaffleBrainInstitute.com

There are creative and effective ways to help an aging parent, family member or loved one who suffers from Alzheimer’s disease or dementia cope with the loss of their spouse, according to a new survey of aging experts released this week by the National Association of Professional Geriatric Care Managers (NAPGCM).

Remembering that there are different stages and types of dementia, making sure the surviving spouse does not become socially isolated and not rushing other major changes in their lives are among the top expert recommendations.

Americans are increasingly challenged by the need to communicate difficult information to aging family members with dementia. According to the National Institutes of Health as many as 5 million of the 43 million Americans age 65 and older may have Alzheimer’s disease and another 1.8 million people have some other form of dementia. And, according to the the number of Americans with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias will escalate rapidly in coming years as baby boomers age. By 2050, the number of people age 65 and older with Alzheimer’s disease may nearly triple, from 5 million to as many as 16 million, barring the development of medical breakthroughs to prevent, slow or stop the disease.

June is Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month. NAPGCM is releasing the results of its latest survey to help American families facing one of the most difficult of these challenges. NAPGCM polled 288 professional geriatric care managers in Los Angeles, CA and across the country asking them to identify the most effective strategies for helping a loved one with dementia cope with the loss of their spouse. The top six strategies identified by the aging experts are:

1. Remember there are many different stages of dementia. Your loved one’s capacity for understanding, coping and grieving can be very different depending on their stage of dementia. (Identified by 96% of survey respondents)

2. If your loved one’s response to reminiscing about their spouse is positive, share old photos and memories. (88 %)

3. Make sure the surviving spouse is not socially isolated. Schedule visitors on a regular basis and help them keep up with any normal social routines they have. (85%)

4. Reassure them there are people who care about them and will care for them. (84%)

5. Don’t rush big changes. It may make sense for them at some point to move to a facility, or closer to family. But, if possible, give them time to adapt so there aren’t too many major life changes at once. (81%)

6. If they choose to be included in mourning rituals for their spouse, make sure there is someone overseeing this so if the situation becomes too stressful they can leave. (78%)

“With the rising rates of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia in our community, we often see families who face such challenging situations,” said Trina Duke, Gerontologist and Care Manager, Los Angeles, CA. “Our survey findings offer some sound expert advice for families.”

The Alzheimer’s Association is a leading resource for families seeking information on the diagnosis, treatment, and stages of the disease. Their website provides information on living with Alzheimer’s and other dementias, tips for caregivers, and financial and legal planning. Go to www.alz.org. Help is only a phone call away on their 24/7 Helpline at 1-800-272-3900.

Local chapters provide educational programs, community support groups, and creative workshops for persons with dementia and their caregivers. The Alzheimer’s Association California Southland Chapter assists people with Alzheimer’s and their families and educates the public about Alzheimer’s disease. The chapter offers a variety of diverse programs and services. It serves the diverse counties of Los Angeles, Riverside, San Bernardino, Inyo, Kings, Mono and Tulare.

“We’re so lucky.”

I kept saying that to my sisters following my 90-year-old father’s passing in early 2013. I’m not sure they appreciated why I kept saying that. I said it because we were lucky he’d lived a great life. We were lucky to have had him so long, especially given my mother had died in 1988. We were lucky Dad had all his faculties to the end, even as his body disintegrated.

Most of all, though, we were lucky he’d generated and executed a complete estate plan. Thanks to John Heebner’s sense of responsibility, the logistics, legalities and, above all, the grief of his daughters weren’t multiplied needlessly by a lack of foresight on the part of our parent.

I knew where he kept the documents. He’d made sure to show me which file drawer they were in a few years prior to his death. He’d put together a trust to avoid probate. He’d also made it clear, as my mother had many years before, that he did not want extensive measures used to prolong his life. He had his Power of Attorney ready to go. He’d made his attorney the executor of his will so we girls wouldn’t argue over it. (Yes, we would have.)

A friend of mine who’s an excellent Geriatric Care Manager knew a successful doctor who, in his mid-80s, had all his estate planning and paperwork done. It was found in his desk drawer following his death – all unsigned. His estate wound up in probate, of course, and the difficulty and pain were compounded because there had been two marriages, two sets of offspring – but nothing had been updated since the first marriage.

My own estate planning attorney now has to struggle with the fact that there are now only two – count ‘em, two! – probate courts for the whole of Los Angeles County. When he needs to go to trial on behalf of a client, it’s now often an eight to ten month wait for a court date. Talk about prolonging the agony.

My Dad had even cleared much of the superfluous stuff out of the house, something I often do on behalf of other families as a Senior Move Manager. But Dad had taken the time to do a lot of the decluttering so his daughters wouldn’t have to, although there was one thing John Heebner did hoard. Given that my father had been a very successful businessman in Buffalo and that he had an MBA from Harvard, I don’t suppose it’s really so great a surprise that he’d kept all his tax returns back to 1957.

Given all he’d done for us, I couldn’t really begrudge him his collection of 1040s, even as I was lugging 256 pounds worth of them out of the house for shredding. After all, he’d made sure all the vital paper, all the documents we’d really need, were there waiting for us.

If you don’t plan for a grand finale, you – and your family – can easily wind up with a tragic ending.

 

Marty Stevens-Heebner

Happy Earth Day!!!

This afternoon the residents and staff of Raya’s Paradise Board & Care facility at 849 Gardner in West Hollywood will be celebrating Earth Day with the Hollywood Boys and Girls Club.

The kids will be sharing fun stories and treats with the residents. Each of the kids will be taking home a plant from our herb garden to take to their own home to start their own sustainable herb garden.

 

Be sure to check out all of the fun photo’s on our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/rayasparadise!!!