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Good Samaritan Society - Home Care celebrates 20 years of service


By Mitchell Walbridge

Fri, Jul 11th, 2014
Posted in Preston Features

While some retirees venture off to the warm, dryer climates of Arizona and other parts of the south and west for their golden years, many find that they can only feel right at home here in the Midwest, specifically southern Minnesota and northern Iowa.

However, no matter where one goes, there’s no question that as our wisdom continues grow as we age, so can our dependability on others. Dependability on others comes in different arrangements, whether moving to a care facility, assisted living center and today many even include having the option of staying right at home.

Good Samaritan Society - Home Care located in Preston, Minn. is celebrating 20 years of making at-home life possible for many of the area’s residents. Good Samaritan began providing assistance in 1994 when home care services weren’t widely established.

“In those days there was not a lot of support for home care,” said Vickie Lynch, Director of Home Health for Good Samaritan.

Even so, Lynch and others at Good Samaritan knew that the need was there for home health services. Good Samaritan Society Administrator Doug Aretz helped pioneer home care services beginning with a man who had been placed in the nursing home but wanted to return home.

“He [Aretz] was the one who started the agency and had the vision to provide care for people going home from our facility,” Lynch said.

The Good Samaritan Society - Home Care is a Medicare- and Medicaid-certified agency that also accepts many forms of insurance and private payment. The Good Samaritan Society extends its service area far beyond Fillmore County, serving Olmsted, Winona, Freeborn, Mower, and Houston counties in Minnesota and Worth and Mitchell counties in Iowa. Lynch stated that clients range in number from between 80 to 100.

The Good Samaritan Society is part of one of the largest not-for-profit providers of senior care and services. It owns and operates more than 240 care centers, senior living communities and home care agencies.

While Preston’s home care program began in 1994, the Evangelical Lutheran Good Samaritan Society was founded in 1922.

A wide array of services are available through the Good Samaritan Society:

Telehealth. The Good Samaritan Society allows for health care delivery from a distance, allowing patrons to see, hear and talk to nursing staff though various telecommunications devices -- an important part of sustaining home-care.

Personal Emergency Response Systems. According to a statistic provided by the Good Samaritan Society, on average in any given year one in three adults age 65 and older experiences a fall, meaning that falls are one of the most common causes of injury or death among seniors. Good Samaritan Society - Home Care offers a line of low-cost personal emergency response systems that allow an individual to instantly notify help that emergency aid is needed immediately. Some of these systems are in the forms of pendants or cordless phone communicators.

Automated Medication Dispensers. Good Samaritan Society - Home Care provides automated medication dispensers to make keeping track of prescribed medication dosage and frequency as easy as it should be.

Outpatient Therapy. Outpatient therapy provided by Good Samaritan Home Care provides recovery aid to anyone of any age following a surgery, illness, or injury. Services include initial assessments, follow-up treatments, physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and more specialized services on a case-by-case basis.

More help and services are available from Good Samaritan Society - Home Care and are provided by registered nurses, certified nursing assistants and rehabilitation therapists.

Lynch stresses that the services provided in Preston are focused on the community, noting that local residents and families provide the supported needed for Good Samaritan Society - Home Care’s mission to provide service.

And if Good Samaritan Society - Home Care doesn’t provide the service that an individual is seeking, they are more than practiced in providing guidance to the right source. “Sometimes it’s not us they need, and we can direct them. Our focus is to find a way to provide what they need,” said Lynch.

The staff at Good Samaritan Society Home - Home Care will continue to provide clients with the care and services they need and desire in order to help them maintain their well-being while also helping them to live independently as possible, just as they have for the past 20 years.

“We’ll continue to serve our community and do what we’ve always done,” said Lynch.

In order to celebrate and commemorate their accomplishments since 1994, Good Samaritan Society - Home Care will be hosting an open house on Wednesday, July 16 from 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. in Preston. The community is invited to the open house to help celebrate 20 years of outstanding progress and service provided by Good Samaritan Society - Home Care.

Home Care for southern Minnesota and Northern Iowa is located at 200 St. Paul Street in Preston, Minn. For more information on the Good Samaritan Home Society - Home Care program and services visit www.good-sam.com or call (507)-765-2700.

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