By Executive Vice-President, Diana Delgado
What is housing plus services? According to LeadingAge.org, housing plus services is an exciting component of affordable senior housing, offering low-income seniors more opportunity to remain independent and in their own homes. Housing plus services is a model of housing that Eaton has provided since its opening in 1980. At the time, Eaton partnered with a local nursing home to provide a nurse for an onsite wellness clinic and the services component has grown exponentially ever since.
The partnership between Eaton’s Resident Services Coordinator and Director of Wellness is the key to success for housing plus services at Eaton. This partnership enables residents to access community services, such as applying for Medicaid or arranging transportation services, to connecting residents to onsite community partnerships. These onsite partnerships include primary care, dermatology, audiology, optometry, dental hygiene, physical and occupational therapy, wellness coaching, massage, and more.
Housing plus services has been shown to improve the health and wellness of seniors. The LeadingAge Long Term Services and Supports (LTSS) Center at UMASS Boston has been studying this model for years. According to their study “Affordable Senior Housing Plus Services: What’s The Value?” supported by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, a key study finding shows that the presence of a service coordinator significantly decreased residents’ odds of having a hospital stay.
Supportive services in senior housing is improving the quality of life of our residents in all our celebrated dimensions of wellness – physical, emotional, social, spiritual, nutritional, intellectual, environmental and community. We have partnered with the University of Denver and Metropolitan State University of Denver over the past few years to collect data on Eaton’s housing plus services model and we are excited that we will soon be able to share the impact with measurable data, proving that housing plus services truly improves the health and wellness of seniors. Stay tuned!