All posts by Integral Senior Living

March Is National Nutrition Month

This year’s theme is “Put Your Best Fork Forward”

National Nutrition Month is a nutrition education and information campaign held every March by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. The campaign focuses on the importance of making informed food choices, developing sound eating practices, and committing to physical activity habits.

The theme for 2017 is “Put Your Best Fork Forward,” which reminds us that each bite counts. Small shifts in our food choices can reap benefits over time. The 2015–2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans suggest starting with gradual changes—one forkful at a time—to create healthier, lasting habits for years to come. Whether you are preparing meals at home or making selections when dining out, Put Your Best Fork Forward helps develop the healthy eating style that’s best for you and your family.

“How much we eat is as important as what we eat, which is why this year’s National Nutrition Month theme inspires us to start with small changes in our eating habits,” says registered dietitian nutritionist and Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Spokesperson Kristi King.

Key Messages of this Year’s Campaign

  • Create an eating style that includes a variety of your favorite, healthful foods.
  • Practice cooking more at home and experiment with healthier ingredients.
  • How much we eat is as important as what we eat. Eat and drink the right amount for you.
  • Find activities that you enjoy and be physically active most days of the week.
  • Manage your weight or lower your health risks by consulting a registered dietitian nutritionist. RDNs can provide sound, easy-to-follow personalized nutrition advice to meet your lifestyle, preferences, and health-related needs.

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is the world’s largest organization of food and nutrition professionals. The Academy is committed to improving the nation’s health and advancing the profession of dietetics through research, education, and advocacy. Visit the Academy at eatright.org.

Who Qualifies for Senior-Care Tax Deductions?

Tax season can be especially stressful for seniors on a fixed income and for family caregivers of elderly loved ones—groups that include millions of budget-conscious Americans looking to keep expenses down.

The good news is that seniors and caregivers may be eligible for tax deductions for medical and dental expenses. Another bright spot in 2017 is that final tax returns are due Tuesday, April 18, three days later than the standard April 15 date. This year the 15th falls on a weekend and Monday, April 17, is Emancipation Day, a federal holiday, giving tax filers until April 18 to complete their returns.

Seniors receiving medical care in assisted living may qualify for tax deductions. This includes residents with Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia who require substantial supervision to protect their health and safety.

Taxpayers married to or related to seniors requiring care may be eligible for deductions if the senior qualifies as the taxpayer’s dependent according to IRS requirements. Detailed information on dependency can be found at http://www.irs.gov/publications/p554/ch05.html. Additionally, the caregiver must provide more than half of the support for the senior during the year.

Which Senior Living Expenses Can Be Deductible?

For certain assisted living expenses to be tax deductible, the resident must be considered “chronically ill.” A doctor or nurse needs to have certified that the resident either:

  • Cannot perform at least two activities of daily living, such as eating, toileting, transferring, bath, dressing, or continence; or
  • Requires supervision due to a cognitive impairment (such as Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia). 

To qualify for the deduction, the senior’s personal care services need to be provided according to a plan of care prescribed by a licensed health care provider. This means a doctor, nurse or social worker must prepare a plan that outlines the specific daily services the resident receives.

Typically, only the medical components of assisted living costs are deductible and ordinary living costs like room and board are not. But if the resident is chronically ill and the facility is acting primarily for medical care and the care is being performed according to a certified plan of care, then the room and board may be considered part of the medical care and the cost may be deductible.

Residents who are not chronically ill may still be able to deduct the portion of their expenses that are attributable to medical care, including entrance or initiation fees.

Which Medical Expenses Can Be Deducted?

  • Premiums for insurance policies that cover medical care are deductible, unless the premiums are paid with pretax dollars. Generally, the payroll tax paid for Medicare Part A is not deductible, but Medicare Part B premiums are deductible.
  • Payments made for nursing services.
  • Medical fees from doctors, laboratories, assisted living residences, home health care, and hospitals
  • The cost of long-term care, including housing, food, and other personal costs, if the person is chronically ill.
  • The cost of meals and lodging at a hospital or similar institution if a principal reason for being there is to receive medical care.
  • Home modifications costs such as wheelchair ramps, grab bars, and handrails.
  • The cost of dental treatment.
  • The cost of travel to and from medical appointments.
  • Personal care items, such as disposable briefs and foods for a special diet.
  • Cost of prescription drugs.
  • Entrance fees for assisted living.
  • Room and board for assisted living if the resident is certified chronically ill by a healthcare professional and follows a prescribed plan of care. Typically this means that they are unable to perform two activities of daily living (ADLs) or require close supervision due to dementia or other conditions.

To claim the deduction, the medical expenses have to be more than 10 percent of the resident’s adjusted gross income. (For taxpayers 65 and older, this threshold will be 7.5 percent through 2016.) In addition, only medical expenses paid during the year can be deducted, regardless of when the services were provided, and medical expenses are not deductible if they are reimbursable by insurance.

For more information on what can and cannot be deducted for medical expenses see Publication 502 on the IRS Web site at http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p502.pdf.

Free Tax Preparation Help for Seniors and Caregivers

Preparing tax returns for seniors and caregivers can be complex, and tax rules may change from year to year. Need help? Consult a tax adviser, or get expert advice at an IRS-sponsored tax center free of charge. To find out what services these tax help centers offer, how to find one near you, and what you’ll need to bring when you visit, go to the IRS Web site at https://www.irs.gov/Individuals/Free-Tax-Return-Preparation-for-You-by-Volunteers

 

The Ridge Senior Living Celebrates Grand Opening

The Ridge Senior Living, a new assisted living and memory care community managed by Integral Senior Living (ISL) is pleased to announce it recently celebrated its official grand opening with an event for the entire community. At the Roaring 20’s event, guests were encouraged to come in their best Gatsby dress while food, drink, tours, door prizes, and entertainment were in abundance.

“We are so pleased to open our doors to the Salt Lake City community. Our goal of providing outstanding senior living care in a beautiful and unique environment is now a reality,” said Gabby Money, director of sales and marketing for The Ridge. “We welcome everyone to come by and see what makes The Ridge so unique and special.”

Defined by a distinctive atmosphere, lavish amenities, exceptional hospitality, and innovative technologies, The Ridge is in a league all of its own. Continuous connection with caring staff and healthcare professionals allows residents and families to enjoy the highest quality senior living experience. The community’s commitment to excellence brings sophistication and elegance to the heart of Salt Lake City

The Ridge is a three-story building offering 148 assisted living and memory care apartments and underground parking. The design is modern utilizing many windows in the design to take advantage of the amazing views. In addition, the building features all the latest in technology to enhance residents’ lives. Two local companies worked on the project; Sahara Construction as the building contractor and AJC Architects as the designer. The project is owned by Dave Farrell, an independent developer of assisted living and memory care communities in California and Utah.

Key highlights of the community include:

  • Spacious apartments with designer finishes
  • Unparalleled views throughout the community apartments
  • Restaurant & bistro featuring choices of local, organic fresh and gluten-free options to savor
  • Environmentally conscious, solar powered community
  • State-of-the-Art wellness center to engage in a healthy lifestyle
  • Concierge services available
  • Housekeeping for a hassle-free lifestyle
  • Apartment pre-installed with Voice over IP Phone system, Basic Cable and Wi-Fi
  • Resident parking and storage areas available
  • Vibrant Life calendar to offer a variety of daily experiences and adventures
  • Personalized care plans based on individual preferences
  • Exceptionally trained, compassionate staff available day and night
  • Cutting edge emergency response systems & keyless entry

The Ridge is located at 2363 S. Foothill Dr., Salt Lake City, UT 84109. For more information visit http://www.TheRidgeSeniorLiving.com

About The Ridge

Located in Salt Lake City, Utah, The Ridge Senior Living provides the finest in assisted living and memory care options for residents. It is operated by Integral Senior Living, which manages senior living communities. ISL is founded on a care philosophy that fosters dignity and respect for residents and promotes their independence and individuality. For more information visit http://www.theridgeseniorliving.com.

Integral Senior Living to Manage Revel Senior Living Community

Integral Senior Living (ISL), a premier senior living management company, is pleased to announce it has been chosen to manage Revel, a refined senior community located in Henderson, Nevada. The community is being developed by The Wolff Company and is located at 1505 Wigwam Parkway, Henderson NV 89074. It is anticipated to open for preleasing in early 2017.

“We are pleased to have been selected to manage this community and look forward to providing the highest standards of senior services to make this the choice community in Henderson,” said Collette Valentine CEO/COO of Integral Senior Living.

When open, Revel, will offer 146 one- and two-bedroom independent living residences. Services and amenities will be of the utmost importance at this new community. Revel will offer unique dining options by partnering Sodexo and acclaimed chef and Food Network star, Beau MacMillan, in the development of two farm-to-table restaurant experiences. Revel will also offer an active lifestyle for seniors through ISL’s award-winning Vibrant Life program.

About The Wolff Company

Wolff has invested in, acquired and developed high-quality multifamily assets for more than six decades. The Company is headquartered in Scottsdale, Arizona and maintains offices in Washington, Massachusetts and California. Contact us at 480.315.9595 or visit us online at www.awolff.com.

About ISL

Integral Senior Living headquartered in Carlsbad, CA, manages a progressive selection of senior residences to meet the growing needs of today’s aging population. It currently manages 58 independent, assisted living and memory care properties throughout California, Arizona, Utah, Idaho, Texas, Colorado, Oregon, Washington, Illinois, Michigan, Missouri, Alabama, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Florida and Indiana. It is ranked the 20th largest senior living provider in the U.S. according to Senior Living Executive. ISL is founded on a care philosophy that fosters dignity and respect for residents and promotes their independence and individuality. The dedicated staff at each community is trained to maintain the highest standards of senior care services.

ISL Inspires: Helping Louisiana Flood Victims

Integral Senior Living (ISL), a premier senior living management company, is always looking at new ways to innovate. Staying true to its mission, it created ISL Inspires, a program designed to give back to local communities in a variety of ways. Most recently, ISL Inspires took on the mission to engage corporate and community staff, residents, and family members to help raise money for Louisiana flood victims. In all the campaign raised $16,551.00 which was given to the non-profit organization Samaritans Purse to distribute the funds to victims.

“As part of ISL Inspires, we challenged all our communities to take part and raise funds for the flood victims in Louisiana. Working together for a common cause and goal, we were humbled by not only the monetary support we received, but the enthusiasm from everyone involved in this wonderful effort,” said Collette Valentine, CEO/COO of ISL.

ISL Inspires chose to assist residents of Louisiana who were victims of the devastating flood, which took place in August 2016. It was the worst US disaster since Hurricane Sandy. Thousands of people in Louisiana lost everything and help is needed, many did not imagine nor think they could become victims of a flood of this magnitude.

The check for $16,551.00 was presented to a representative of Samaritans Purse at ISL’s Executive Director meeting recently held in New Orleans.

About ISL

Integral Senior Living headquartered in Carlsbad, CA, manages a progressive selection of senior residences to meet the growing needs of today’s aging population. It currently manages 59 independent, assisted living and memory care properties throughout Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Michigan, Missouri, Nevada, Oklahoma, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, and Washington.  It is ranked the 17th largest senior living provider in the U.S. according to Senior Housing News. ISL is founded on a care philosophy that fosters dignity and respect for residents and promotes their independence and individuality. The dedicated staff at each community is trained to maintain the highest standards of senior care services.

Wardman Group Acquires Summers Landing Polo Road

Senior living community embarks on major renovation and is managed by ISL

The Wardman Group, based in Washington, D.C., announced today that its affiliate has acquired Summers Landing Polo Road, a 92-unit senior housing property in Columbia, SC. Wardman hired senior housing management company Integral Senior Living (ISL) to manage the property.

The property was re-named “Amara Place at Columbia” shortly after closing and Wardman has embarked on a $1.4 million renovation of the property featuring:

  • Interior renovations of the common areas, including new furniture, carpeting, and artwork;
  • Exterior upgrades to the landscaping, drive aisles, and exterior painting;
  • Expansion to the dining area to allow for a more vibrant dining experience for its residents; and
  • Increase the size of the memory care wing from 14 units to 22 units.

“In addition to upgrading the property’s physical plant, our main goals are to improve the quality of the property’s resident care, food service, and overall staffing,” said Wardman CEO Thad Paul. “As The Wardman Group’s first investment, this acquisition fits our core competencies given its attractive location in the Southeastern United States, the positive supply and demand fundamentals of Columbia’s senior housing market, and the opportunity to add value in the near term by improving the property.”

“We’re off to a quick start at the property with several new management hires that will help improve operations immediately,” said Collette Valentine, CEO/COO of ISL “We look forward to bringing our management and operating experience along with ISL best practices to Amara Place.”

Amara Place is ISL’s first senior living community in South Carolina and the company’s 59th location overall.

Post-renovation, Amara Place at Columbia will feature 38 independent living, 32 assisted living, and 22 memory care apartments. Amara Place offers comprehensive assisted living services for those who choose or require assistance with their daily needs, but who wish to remain as independent as possible. A wide range of services and activities for residents that provide social, educational, and recreational opportunities is offered. Residents will also enjoy ISL’s award-winning Dining by Design program, which provides a personalized restaurant dining experience and Vibrant Life, a program designed to enrich resident’s lives

Amara Place at Columbia is located at 651 Polo Road in Columbia, south of Two Notch Road, east of Sesquicentennial Park, and north of Interstate 20.

About The Wardman Group

The Wardman Group is a boutique real estate investment and asset management firm founded in 2016. The Wardman Group focuses on opportunities in the hospitality and senior housing sectors, where it targets under-valued assets, whether due to property condition, management capabilities, capital flows, or cycle timing.  The firm also asset manages properties on behalf of third parties in areas that align with its core competencies.

About ISL

Integral Senior Living headquartered in Carlsbad, CA, manages a progressive selection of senior residences to meet the growing needs of today’s aging population. It currently manages 59 independent, assisted living and memory care properties throughout Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Michigan, Missouri, Nevada, Oklahoma, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, and Washington.  It is ranked the 17th largest senior living provider in the U.S. according to Senior Housing News. ISL is founded on a care philosophy that fosters dignity and respect for residents and promotes their independence and individuality. The dedicated staff at each community is trained to maintain the highest standards of senior care services.

Support and Recognition for Caregivers’ Contributions

Caregiver’s “Bill of Rights” stresses self-care and dignity

The concept of a Caregiver Bill of Rights is not new. Its origins are sometimes disputed, but many agree that it arose more than 30 years ago after the publication of a book called CareGiving: Helping an Aging Loved One by Jo Horne (AARP Books, 2015). A landmark work that is still relevant to caregivers today, the book addresses all aspects of day-to-day caregiving, and emphasizes the vital relationship between the care provider and recipient.

Caregivers handling the stresses, challenges, and emotional toll of caring for an aging family member—especially caregivers who often feel undervalued, abandoned, overburdened, and overwhelmed—should familiarize themselves with these basic tenets that champion all caregivers’ rights to practice self-care, preserve their own individuality, seek help from others, take pride in their contributions, and to expect acknowledgement and respect for what they do.

Caregiver’s Bill of Rights by Jo Horne 

I have the right:

  • To take care of myself. This is not an act of selfishness. It will give me the capability of taking better care of my loved one.
  • To seek help from others even though my loved ones may object. I recognize the limits of my own endurance and strength.
  • To maintain facets of my own life that do not include the person I care for, just as I would if he or she were healthy. I know that I do everything that I reasonably can for this person, and I have the right to do some things just for myself.
  • To get angry, be depressed, and express other difficult feelings occasionally.
  • To reject any attempts by my loved one (either conscious or unconscious) to manipulate me through guilt, and/or depression.
  • To receive consideration, affection, forgiveness, and acceptance for what I do, from my loved ones, for as long as I offer these qualities in return.
  • To take pride in what I am accomplishing and to applaud the courage it has sometimes taken to meet the needs of my loved one.
  • To protect my individuality and my right to make a life for myself that will sustain me in the time when my loved one no longer needs my full-time help.
  • To expect and demand that as new strides are made in finding resources to aid physically and mentally impaired persons in our country, similar strides will be made toward aiding and supporting caregivers.

Free Caption Phone Helps People with Hearing Loss Stay in Touch

Phone conversation is displayed in text on a large screen

Because using the telephone can become difficult (if not impossible) for people with hearing difficulties, many tend to avoid phone conversations. Not only does this diminish their social and business interactions, but it also robs them of a valuable lifeline if they need help.

The CaptionCall® captioned telephone works like a regular telephone—just dial and answer calls as usual. Speak and listen using the phone handset. The caption phone displays the live phone conversation in easy-to-read text on a large screen.

Provided by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for those who have professionally certified hearing loss, the phone and caption service are free of charge for those who qualify. Simply complete a form on the CaptionCall website and have a doctor in one of the approved areas of practice sign the form.

If you’re unable to get a doctor’s signature, you can pay a one-time $75 fee to self-certify the phone user’s medically recognized hearing loss. There are no extra charges for delivery, installation, or customer support.

 Before you order, make sure the phone user has the following:

  • Medically recognized hearing loss
  • High-speed Internet connection
  • Standard home phone connection
  • Standard electrical outlet

 For hearing-impaired iPad users, a free mobile app enables CaptionCall customers to make and receive calls directly on their iPad.

After you order the phone, a local trainer helps install the device in the house. The trainer then shows the user (and his or her family) how it works. The trainer also helps complete the paperwork required by the FCC.

Five Habits of Successful, Loving Older Couples

This Valentines Day, remind yourself how stay in love for years

Everyone knows couples who’ve been together for decades—perhaps you’re among them—and whose relationships still seem genuinely happy and harmonious. Our communities are filled with couples and those who understand how love lasts. What behaviors, traits, and tactics might be key to their long-term relationship success? Relationship experts- and many seniors often cite these five habits.

Notice and stay open to changes. Don’t assume your partner is the same person he or she was decades ago—although, of course, there will be similarities. Learn your partner’s goals, dreams, and future plans. Keep in tune with who your partner is in the moment and open yourself to who he or she might become.

Accept the challenges of aging. Vulnerabilities arise over the years. Support each other as you deal with physical, cognitive, and emotional challenges and feelings about aging and death. Share thoughts on what lies ahead and face the future as collaborators who will be there for each other throughout the difficulties.

Don’t be afraid to fight fairly. All couples, including the most successful ones, have arguments and conflicts. Happy couples don’t hide from fights. They listen, speak their mind, negotiate, and tell the truth while trying not to be hurtful. After “good fights,” the smoke clears—and issues and complaints tend to get resolved.

Apologize and bounce back. Connected couples don’t shy away from hashing it out, but they also tend to bounce back quickly. They’d rather forego drawn-out grudge holding, pouting, silent punishing, lasting resentments, and late-night “rebound fighting.” These couples get bored with continuous bickering; they’d just as soon get on with being a contented twosome. But apologies are not skipped over. Sincere apologies build respect, empathy, and belief that the other person was truly listening.

Take care of yourself. People in lasting partnerships know their own shortcomings and emotional issues, and take responsibility for seeking counseling and practicing self-help. Strong partners also know that they cannot be “everything” to each other. They create relationships, pursuits, and hobbies that thrive outside of the twosome—and often make the relationship stronger.

February Is American Heart Month

This month is also marks the “Go Red for Women” campaign

Ever since President Lyndon B. Johnson declared the first American Heart Month in 1964, the month of February has been dedicated to cardiovascular health awareness. Cardiovascular disease is the nation’s No. 1 cause of death for both men and women, killing an estimated 630,000 Americans each year. At our communities we make sure that a healthy diet and exercise are part of everyday living.

In the U.S., the most common type of heart disease is coronary artery disease (CAD), which can lead to a heart attack or stroke. Men and women can greatly reduce their risk for CAD through lifestyle changes and, in some cases, medication. The American Heart Association conducts research and raises awareness to improve the cardiovascular health of all Americans. Throughout February awareness about heart health is evident everywhere- from grocery stores to sporting events.

Since 2004, February also has been the signature month for the American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women campaign to spread the message that heart disease is not only a man’s problem.

National Wear Red Day

On Friday, February 3, the American Heart Association and Go Red For Women celebrate American Heart Month and raise heart disease awareness by encouraging participating in National Wear Red Day. Every 80 seconds, one woman is killed by heart disease and stroke. That’s 1 in 3 deaths among women each year. Eighty percent of these deaths can be prevented with education and action. By wearing red and using the social-media hashtag #GoRedWearRed, you can help raise women’s awareness and support education on cardiovascular health.