Making an Impact – Senior Isolation and Depression

In the Making an Impact series, clients and services are featured to expand awareness of the wide array of help available at JFS and to ensure donors understand the lives they touch and the difference they make throughout the community. Client names have been changed to protect their confidentiality.

Heun is a 73-year-old Cantonese-speaking client. She lives with her daughter, son-in-law and two grandchildren. She only speaks and understands Cantonese. An interpreter must be used when interacting with her.

During Heun’s annual assessment, the JFS case manager learned that she felt lonely because she is home alone most of the day. She expressed an interest in a friendly visitor for socializing, shopping, going to the pharmacy, and other activities. The case manager contacted an agency that could provide professional companion services.

Loneliness, isolation and the resulting depression are serious challenges that many seniors like Heun face. They contribute to overall physical and cognitive decline. But with a little extra effort, the JFS case manager was able to secure three hours of companion services each week to help combat Heun’s loneliness.

The case manager was also able to secure a Lifeline device for Heun to keep her safe while she is home alone.

JFS provides exceptional case management and care coordination for more than 1,100 low-income older adults and adults with disabilities. JFS case managers have earned a combined 96 percent compliance score for care plan protocols and praise from independent program evaluations for attentiveness to clients’ social, emotional and spiritual goals in ways that truly captured what was most important to the client.