Live Vibrantly - October 23, 2019
According to a 2018 study conducted by AARP, only 46% of adults age 50 and better think it’s possible to age in their own home and stay there as long as they’d like. What’s interesting is that more than 3 in 4 of those same people want to stay at home as they age.
With more than 75% wanting to stay home and only 46% believing they can, Goodwin House Incorporated would like to increase that second statistic considerably with our innovative age in place program, Goodwin House at Home.
One of the best kept secrets in Northern Virginia, Goodwin House at Home (GHAH) combines long-term care benefits with coordination of care and services. Internally, we sometimes say “It’s like long-term care insurance, on steroids!” Members pay an initial fee to join, then a monthly fee to maintain their membership. Not only does GHAH help cover costs of care, it’s there to help members select, schedule and manage the care when it’s needed. GHAH staff are available 24/7/365 should a member need anything—and we mean anything!
When GHAH Member Olivia Brickey broke her arm, GHAH staff managed all her needs—from transportation to medical appointments to dog walking services for her beloved poodle mix, Baby. Brickey fully recovered in the comforts of home and continued living in her house.
“I had been living in a townhouse some 50 years,” Brickey shared. “I loved my neighborhood and decided to age in place. After hearing so many positive things about GHAH, I joined. It wasn’t long until I took a nasty fall and the care I got from GHAH was nothing short of extraordinary. It was amazing!”
Brickey eventually decided to move to Goodwin House Alexandria and bring her GHAH membership with her. While her address may have changed, Brickey knew she could keep her membership and continue to enjoy the peace of mind that comes from a knowable financial future. She also knows Goodwin House, both through the at Home program as well as our Life Plan Community in Alexandria, would be there with her, every step of the way.
This is an example of the incredible flexibility one has with GHAH—you can stick with your plan to stay in your house, or you can move to another location, including a senior living community. Wherever you choose to live, you can take Goodwin House at Home with you.
Olivia Brickey is one of nearly 140 individuals who’ve joined Goodwin House at Home since 2014. GHAH recently celebrated its fifth anniversary by bringing together members, staff and former staff. Everyone enjoyed a luau with Hawaiian dancers, specialty foods and beverages.
During remarks shared with guests, GHAH Executive Director Karen Skeens said, “Goodwin House at Home was approved by the Commonwealth of Virginia, State Corporation Commission, Bureau of Insurance for operation on February 20, 2014. We launched the program on June 19, 2014 and our first members joined on October 3, 2014.”
In the five years that have followed, Skeens has spent her days growing the program, both in terms of the number of members served and the number of benefits and options offered. With fewer than 40 continuing care at home programs like GHAH around the country, establishing the program takes some pioneering efforts.
“It has been so rewarding to see what began as a plan for Goodwin House at Home become a reality,” said Skeens. “For me, it is particularly rewarding to know that with one call, members have been able to rely on the Member Services Facilitators to coordinate whatever type of care is needed whether short-term, ongoing or end of life care.”
With Skeens’ pioneering spirit and dedication, GHAH continues to grow. “We are not limited by bricks and mortar,” continues Skeens. “We want to expand our care coordination by offering the service to more individuals who may have a pre-existing condition as well as individuals who are already needing care. The care coordination that is provided by the Member Services Facilitators is at the heart of this program.” And if Skeens has anything to do with it, that heart will go out to more people in more ways than we currently imagine.