ABUSE / NEGLECT/ FRAUD
If you suspect abuse or neglect of a senior citizen, or need more information, call the relevant organization in the state where the senior lives. Click to find local organizations. Or call the national Eldercare Locator at (800) 677-1116. If the situation is serious, threatening, or dangerous, call 911 or the local police for immediate help.
National Center on Elder Abuse
A Federally funded national resource for information and materials on abuse and neglect.
National Committee for the Prevention of Elder Abuse
One of six partners that make up the National Center on Elder Abuse.
U.S. Postal Inspection Service
Tips on protecting seniors from telemarketing and mail fraud schemes, including sweepstakes. Also a resource for reporting fraud.
ALZHEIMER’S AND DEMENTIA
ADEAR Center (Alzheimer’s Disease Education and Referral Center)
Comprehensive source of information about Alzheimer’s Disease.
Multi-lingual 24/7 Helpline: (800) 272-3900
TDD: (866) 403-3073
A national organization with local chapters that provides education and support to all who are affected by the disease, funds Alzheimer’s research, and works to reduce the risk of dementia by promoting brain health.
A company that offers a number of products to assist those with dementia and their caretakers. Products address safety, wandering, activities of daily living, falls, incontinence, forgetfulness, entertainment, etc.
Palliative Dementia Care Resources
Provides information for family and professional caregivers about end-of-life care for individuals with advanced dementia.
BENEFITS AND ENTITLEMENTS
Government Benefits Search Tool
The official U.S. Government benefits website is a free, confidential tool that helps individuals find government benefits they may be eligible to receive.
Comprehensive web-based service that determines eligibility of benefits programs for seniors with limited income and resources. Developed and maintained by The National Council on Aging (NCOA).
(800) MEDICARE / (800) 633-4227
The official U.S. government website on Medicare. Phone assistance is available 24/7 in English and Spanish.
Medicare Rights Center
(212) 869-3850, (877) 794-3570
An independent source of information for people with Medicare. Services include interactive web tool; hotline; help comparing plans, enrollment, claims, and appeals; prescription drug benefits; professional education and advocacy.
Each state administers its own Medicaid program and sets its own eligibility requirements and application procedures. For information about Medicaid in your state, click on Medicaid under “Benefits Quick Search,” or download a Medicaid application for your state and learn about other benefits.
USDA Food and Nutrition Service
Information about the Food Stamp Program, including application and eligibility.
Social Security, Disability Issues, or Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
www.socialsecurity.gov or www.ssa.gov
(800) 772-1213, Monday-Friday, 7 a.m.7 p.m. Eastern Time; recorded information available 24 hours
TTY: (800) 325-0778
U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs
1 (800) 827-1000
Administers programs for veterans and their families, including health care, educational assistance, survivors’ benefits, and burial assistance.
U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs, Office of Geriatrics and Extended Care
Improves the quality of care for aging and chronically ill veterans by advocating for geriatrics and long-term care clinical programs.
(888) OUR-AARP / (800) 424-3410
Offers access to an array of resources and information on loss, grief, and end-of-life issues. Categories include financial and legal issues, claiming benefits, funeral arrangements, bereavement publications, widowed persons, traumatic loss, advanced directives, and estate planning.
The Compassionate Friends
(877) 969-0010 or (630) 990-0010
Offers supportive services to bereaved parents, grandparents, and siblings after the death of a child of any age. Also manages an online support community.
Geriatric Mental Health Foundation
Increases access to quality mental health care for the elderly. Website includes a search tool to find a geriatric psychiatrists. GMHF was established by the American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry, which provides information for professionals about education, research, and advocacy regarding geriatric mental health.
Mental Health America
Offers searchable information for a variety of mental health topics, including aging, and provides links to local mental health providers. Formerly National Mental Health Association
(877) 819-9147 or (212) 769-2850
Telephone conference call programs that bring informal workshops and support groups to those caring for an aging loved one. Caregivers share mutual concerns, exchange ideas and receive answers to important questions without having to leave their home or workplace. Caregivers’ Connections is a program of DOROT.
Caring from a Distance
Provides support to those taking care of an older loved one from a distance. Services include information about legal, financial, health care, and emotional issues; Caregiving Conferencing, in which a facilitator assists during a family conference call; and secure storage of medical and other information about your loved one for access by anyone you allow.
Free, personalized websites that support and connect loved ones during critical illness, treatment, and recovery. Create a patient care journal to update family and friends, and a guestbook for messages of support.
National Family Caregivers Association
www.nfcacares.org or www.thefamilycaregiver.org
Offers information, education, support, networking, public awareness, and advocacy, which empowers caregivers to act on behalf of themselves and their loved ones.
Well Spouse Association
A nonprofit membership organization which gives support to wives, husbands, and partners of the chronically ill and/or disabled. Connect to or start a local support group, use the online forum, or search the online resource list.
Bikur Cholim Coordinating Council
Bikur cholim means "visiting the sick" in Hebrew and is the act of individuals or groups providing support to people who are ill, homebound, isolated and/or otherwise in distress. BCCC offers a directory of local Bikur Cholim programs, as well as consultation, training, print and audio-visual resource materials, and an annual conference.
(800) 677-1116, Monday-Friday, 9:00 a.m.-8:00 p.m. (EST), English and Spanish
Links those who need assistance with state and local area agencies on aging and community-based organizations that serve older adults and their caregivers. A service of the U.S. Administration on Aging.
National Association of Professional Geriatric Care Managers
Professional practitioners who develop, advance, and promote humane and dignified social and psychological health care for the elderly and their families through counseling, treatment, and the delivery of concrete services by certified providers.
END OF LIFE
(888) OUR-AARP / (800) 424-3410
A program of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization, providing many useful free publications about hospice, palliative care, long term planning, caregiving, bereavement, advanced directives, and work place issues. Offers free download of state-specific forms for living will and healthcare power of attorney. Bi-lingual staff and materials in Spanish available.
Funeral Consumers Alliance
Consumer-oriented education, referrals, and advocacy about funeral options.
Hospice Education Institute
(800) 331-1620 or (207) 255-8800
Maintains a comprehensive database and directory of hospice and palliative care programs. Offers referrals to hospice and palliative care programs, and provides general information about the philosophy and practice of hospice and palliative care.
Hospice Foundation of America
Educates and supports professionals and individuals regarding issues relating to caregiving, terminal illness, and bereavement. Site links to HFA’s hospice locator, newsletters, publications, videos, and media library of educational articles.
Palliative Dementia Care Resources
AARP Money Management Program
Supervised volunteers help low-income older adults or people with disabilities who have difficulty budgeting, paying bills, and keeping track of their finances. This program is currently available in just a few locations throughout the U.S. “Smart Money: Tools for Personal Money Management,” is offered in addition to a series of downloadable brochures on topics like budgeting, managing debt, and guarding against identity theft.
American Association of Daily Money Managers
Provides daily money management services directly to clients. A money manager can perform tasks such as paying bills, balancing checkbooks, making bank deposits and organizing financial paperwork. Site provides a Code of Ethics, the role of DMM’s, and questions to ask when choosing a DMM. Fees are generally hourly, plus travel and expenses.
FOOD AND MEALS
Feeding America (formerly America's Second Harvest)
Find a local food bank, soup kitchen, or food pantry through the nation's largest charitable hunger-relief organization.
Meals on Wheels Association of America
The oldest and largest member organization in the U.S. representing those who provide meal services to people in need, primarily seniors.
(Meals on Wheels and Senior Meal Programs)
A volunteer-run website that helps people find local senior meal programs (either home-delivered or provided for pick-up) and recruits volunteers.
PHYSICAL AND EMOTIONAL HEALTH
NIH Senior Health
Easily accessible aging-related health information for adults aged 60 and over.
FDA for Older People
(888) INFO-FDA / (888) 463-6332
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has numerous articles, brochures, and other publications with information for older people on a wide range of health issues, including arthritis, cancer, health fraud, nutrition, and proper use of medication.
Links to selected online publications, databases, websites, support systems and self-help groups, as well as government agencies and nonprofit organizations for seniors and others.
Alzheimer’s Disease: See Alzheimer's and Dementia section.
American Diabetes Association
(800) DIABETES / (800) 342-2383)
Provides diabetes research, information, and advocacy. Website includes education about all kinds of diabetes as well as information on nutrition, exercise/weight loss, a risk test, and information for those recently diagnosed.
American Foundation for the Blind—Senior Site
Designed to encourage aging adults with eye diseases to live independently and productively. Connects seniors, family members, and caregivers to local services and showcases a wide range of assisted living products available to people with vision loss. It also contains information on the resources and tools needed to continue to read, shop, cook, manage finances, and go out with friends.
American Heart Association
(800) AHA-USA1 / (800) 242-8721
National health agency aimed at preventing, detecting, and treating cardiovascular diseases and strokes. Website offers education about heart disease and health, information on learning CPR and links to local chapters and events.
American Parkinson Disease Association
Aims to "ease the burden and find a cure" for Parkinson's disease, focusing on research, patient support, education, and raising public awareness of the disease. Website includes links to local resources.
American Stroke Association
(888) 4STROKE / (888) 478-7653
The division of the American Heart Association that's solely focused on reducing disability and death from stroke through research, education, fundraising, and advocacy.
Supports the more than 100 types of arthritis and related conditions with advocacy, programs, services, and research. Website provides information on disease and treatment, as well as tools for better functioning and referrals to local chapters.
National Kidney Foundation
A voluntary health organization which seeks to prevent kidney and urinary tract diseases, improve the health and well-being of individuals and families affected by these diseases, and increase the availability of all organs for transplant.
National Osteoporosis Foundation
A voluntary health organization whose mission is to prevent osteoporosis, to promote lifelong bone health, to help improve the lives of those affected by osteoporosis and related fractures, and to find a cure through programs of awareness, education and training, advocacy, and research.
National Parkinson Foundation
Supports Parkinson-related research, patient care, education, training, and outreach. Website includes information about treatment, maintaining wellness, finding a physician, clinical trials, and caregiver resources.
American Cancer Society
Fights cancer through programs of research, education, patient service, advocacy, and rehabilitation. Local services educate the public about cancer prevention, early detection, treatment, survival, and quality of life.
(800) 813-HOPE or (212) 712-8400
Provides free, professional support services, including counseling, education, financial assistance, and practical support for anyone affected by cancer.
National Cancer Institute: Cancer Information Service
Provides the latest and most accurate cancer information.
Geriatric Mental Health Foundation
Raises awareness of psychiatric and mental health disorders affecting the elderly, eliminates the stigma of mental illness and treatment, promotes healthy aging strategies, and increases access to quality mental health care for the elderly.
American Psychological Association
Advances psychology as both a science and a profession and in an effort to promote health, education, and human welfare. The APA Office on Aging coordinates information and activities on aging and geropsychology.
Mental Health America
Promotes mental wellness for everyone, both day to day and in times of crisis, through education, advocacy, and support.
National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)
(800) 950-NAMI, (800) 950-6264
America's largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to improving the lives of persons living with severe mental illness and their families.
Medicare Rights Center: Home Care Channel
Educates consumers, their families, caregivers, professional counselors, and clinicians about Medicare hospice and home health benefits for those with advanced illnesses.
Medicare and Home Health Care
Official government booklet from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid.
National Resource Center on Supportive Housing and Home Modification
Promotes aging in place and independent living for persons of all ages and abilities.
EMERGENCY RESPONSE SYSTEMS
A Personal Emergency Response System (PERS) is an electronic device designed to let you call for help in case of emergency while at home, even if you are unable to reach the telephone. The Federal Trade Commission, the government’s consumer protection arm, has published Facts for Consumers about PERS, in cooperation with the AARP. This fact sheet explains how a PERS works and suggests information to ask before you purchase, rent or lease a unit.
University Without Walls
(877) 819-9147 or (212) 769-2850
Classes offered over the phone. This telephone conference call program brings learning, laughter, friendship, and support to individuals in their own homes.
HOUSING and LONG-TERM CARE FACILITIES
Long Term Care Community Coalition
Works to improve the lives of long term care consumers by strengthening regulation, surveillance, and enforcement. Their projects include Assisted Living 411 and Nursing Home 411, listed below.
Assisted Living 411
Provides information and advocacy for assisted living facilities geared toward the following four groups: potential residents, current residents, direct care staff, and administrative staff.
Nursing Home 411
Provides information and advocacy about nursing homes and specialized nursing facilities.
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
Information and resources to stay in your home, find an apartment, find other housing options, protect yourself from fraud, and stay active.
Nursing Home Compare
Provides detailed information about the past performance of every Medicare and Medicaid certified nursing home in the country.
Elder Law Answers
Provides legal information regarding issues facing seniors and provides referrals to elder law attorneys.
Assists people living with low incomes by providing referrals to local legal aid and public interest law offices, basic information about legal rights, self-help information, court information, links to social service agencies, and more.
National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys
Assists lawyers, bar organizations and others who work with older clients and their families. Provides information, education, networking and assistance to those who deal with the many specialized issues involved with legal services to the elderly and people with special needs.
National Center on Elder Abuse
Proves information and materials on abuse and neglect.
National Guardianship Association
Membership organization that establishes and promotes a nationally recognized standard of excellence in guardianship in the event that an institution or agency has court-appointed a guardian for an adult who has demonstrated that s/he is not capable of making his or her own decisions regarding personal or financial matters.
National Health Law Program
Improves health care for America's working and unemployed poor, minorities, the elderly and people with disabilities. NHeLP provides information about legal services programs, community-based organizations, the private bar, and other legal providers.
National Senior Citizens Law Center (NSCLC)
Promotes the independence and well-being of low-income elderly and disabled individuals by providing attorneys and policy makers with litigation assistance, research and consulting support, national policy representation, training and manuals, and periodicals.
National Accessible Travelers Database
A searchable database, provided by Easter Seals Project ACTION, of accessible transportation options across the U.S.; search by city or zip code.
American Public Transportation Association
Provides state and local links for all modes of public transportation.
AARP Internet Resources
An extensive list of aging and wellness-related resources, searchable by subject and location, etc.
National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped
National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (NLS), Library of Congress, is a free library program of braille and audio materials circulated to enrolled patrons. People may be eligible for the program if they are blind, have a visual disability that prevents them from reading regular print, or have a physical disability that keeps them from being able to hold a book.
USA.gov for Seniors
Helps users access all government sites that provide services for senior citizens.