About Information and Assistance Specialists (I&A)
Information & Assistance Specialists rely on an extensive database that contains up-to-date information on many services and resources, including, but not limited to: Home Health Agencies, Transportation Services, Public Benefits, Housing Options, Personal Care Agencies, Senior Dining Sites, Home Delivered Meal Programs, Support Groups, Prevention Classes, Managed Care, Self-Directed Support Waivers and much, much more!
Who Should Use the Service?
- People age 60 and older
- People age 18 and older with physical and/or developmental/intellectual disabilities
- Caregivers, family, friends and the community of all ages
What can the Information and Assistance Specialists Help with?
I&A can help you in a variety of different ways; whether it be a simple phone number to assisting you in eligibility into programs. Here are just a few ways we can assist you:
Options Counseling is a service provided to people who want information in order to make informed choices about long-term care options. When meeting with individuals and their families, an I&A Specialist will review the individual’s personal history, preferred lifestyle and goals for the future; and they will engage in conversation about the full range of long-term care options available to the individual. This includes information about available services to help people stay at home longer and all of those leading up to and including nursing home placement. In addition, the I&A Specialist will provide people with information about opportunities to maximize independence and self-reliance. This conversation includes ways people can use their private resources or access public funding to meet their needs.
Youth in Transition– If you are a young adult transitioning from the school system and/or children’s programs to adult programs, the Aging & Disability Resource Center is here to help you and your family to make that transition as smooth as possible. Many changes in disability services occur when a student is between the age of 18 and 21. I&A Specialists at the Aging & Disability Resource Center can assist in answering questions you may have.
Long Term Care Services: The ADRC is responsible for helping people access publicly funded long term care services. We do this by determining functional eligibility, facilitating the financial eligibility determination process and assisting with the enrollment process.
After an assessment has been requested, the I&A Specialists use the Wisconsin Long-Term Care Functional Screen to assess the individual’s level of need for services and eligibility for long term care benefits. The functional screen is used to collect information about an individual’s functional status, health and need for assistance for various programs that serve the frail elderly and people with developmental and/or physical disabilities. Individuals who apply for publicly funded long term care must also be eligible for Medicaid. I&A Specialists provide enrollment counseling to people who are found eligible.
Memory Screen: An I&A Specialist can meet with you in your home or at the office to complete a free memory screen. It takes less than 15 minutes.
- Losing things?
- Difficulty understanding?
- Changes in mood?
- Changes in behavior?
If you or someone you know is experiencing these symptoms, it might be time to consider a free memory screening from the ADRC. A memory screening gives you a clearer understanding of whether or not it’s time to talk to your doctor about your concerns. Early referral to your physician is important to determine whether these changes are normal, if they can be treated, and if they are reversible.
How do I Contact the Information & Assistance Specialist?
Information and Assistance Specialists are available by phone and appointment in our office or your home. We listen to you and your unique situation, focusing on identifying needs, preferences and support, both personal and financial. Staff explore and link you to programs and potential funding sources so you can make decisions that are right for you.
What about Confidentiality?
All files and correspondence are kept locked, and your conversations with Information and Assistance Specialists will remain confidential. You may be asked to sign a release of information so we can inquire on your behalf.
What is the Cost?
There is no charge for the services that an Information and Assistance Specialists provides.