Florida Gulf Coast Chapter

Sarasota Update 

December 2012

In This Issue
Support Groups
Care for the Caregiver: Diabetes
Spotlighting Alzheimer's
Access to Rehab
Caregiver Jewels: Use Written Reminders


All programs are free to attend unless otherwise specified.

December 4, Caregiver TrainingBetter Communication. Windsor of Venice, 1600 Center Road, Venice. 2:00 p.m.- 4:00 p.m.    


December 7, Caregiver Training, Basics of Alzheimer's Disease. Senior Friendship Center, 1888 Brother Geenen Way, Sarasota, 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.    


December 20, Caregiver Training, Basics of Alzheimer's Disease. Comfort Keepers, 3667 Webber Street, Sarasota, 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.


Upcoming in January 

January 8, Memory Mobile, Jacaranda Library, 4143 Woodmere Park Boulevard, Venice, 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.


January 9, Memory Mobile, North Port Library, 13800 Tamiami Trail, North Port, 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.


January 10, Memory Mobile, Elsie Quirk Library, 100 W. Dearborn Street, Englewood, 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Support Groups

Alzheimer's Association-Florida Gulf Coast Chapter affiliated support groups are for family members, caregivers, and others interested in learning more about Alzheimer's disease. Meetings are open to everyone and free of charge. Support group facilitators have received training as required by Chapter and National Alzheimer's Association standards. For program information and to verify meeting dates, times, and locations, please use the telephone contacts listed below. For other questions or for respite care information so you can attend a group, call our [county] Office at [local phone number] or 1- 800-272-3900.


Message Boards: The Alzheimer's Association message boards and chat rooms are your online communication forum. Our message boards have over 9,000 registered members from around the United States, and many more people who simply browse the stories and information that is offered 24 hours a day. Join the Alzheimer's Association online community.



Arden Courts
5509 Swift Road (34231)
1st Wednesday @ 5:30 p.m.
Erin Killian, 941-365-8883
Nikki Rodney, 941-925-3900

Clare Bridge
8450 McIntosh Road (34238)
2nd Tuesday @ 4:00 p.m.
Jerri Andree, 941-928-4753

Senior Friendship Center
Caregiver Resource Center
1820 Brother Geenen Way (34236)
Every Thursday @ 10:00 a.m.
Paula Falk, 941-556-3268

SMH Memory Disorder Clinic
Senior Friendship Center for Healthy Aging
1888 Brother Geenen Way (34236)
3rd Thursday @ 9:30 a.m.
Kathleen Houseweart, 941-917-7197
(Dual support group for Mild Cognitive Imparement & Early Stage patients and families)

Heron Club at Prestancia
3749 Sarasota Square Boulevard (34238)
3rd Tuesday, @ 6:00 p.m. (light dinner available)
Judy Dunn, 941-922-1669

Palmer Ranch Healthcare 

5111 Palmer Ranch (34238) 

3rd Wednesday @ 10:00 a.m. 

Susan Garbett, 941-358-1209 


Springwood Nursing and Rehab 

4602 Northgate Court 

3rd Tuesday @ 4:00 p.m. 

Amy Paine, 941-355-2913 

Pines of Sarasota 

1501 N. Orange Ave.  

3rd Tuesday @ 2:00 p.m. 

Ann Modercin, 941-365-0250

Emeritus of Colonial Park Club 

4730 Bee Ridge Road (34233) 

1st Thursday @ 6:00 p.m. 

Maggie DiFranco & Julie Schecter, 941-378-4414

Horizon Bay 

730 South Osprey Avenue (34236)

3rd Wednesday @ 3:00 p.m. 

Jerri Andree, 941-928-4753 


Aston Gardens @ Pelican Point
9000 Ibis Way (34292)
4th Wednesday @ 3:00 p.m.
Pat Quigley, 941-484-9494

Pinebrook Nursing Center
1240 Pinebrook Road (34285)
3rd Monday @ 2:30 p.m. 

(Family Social and Support Group) 

Connie Gens, 941-488-6733

Senior Friendship Center Venice 

2350 Scenis Drive (34293) 

Every Tuesday @ 2:00 p.m.

Phyllis Balliett, 941-584-0050

Christ United Methodist Church 

1475 Center Road 

2nd Wednesday @ 1:00 p.m. 

Janet Harrod, 404-641-2276



Emeritus at River Oaks
925 South River Road (34223) 

3rd Wednesday @ 10:00 a.m. 

Sherri Blanchard, 941-474-8600 


Elsie Quirk Library

100 W. Dearborn Street

Last Wednesday @ 6:30 p.m.

Phyllis Balliett, 941-584-0050

Care for the Caregiver
Stefanie Thompson, Sr. Prog. Specialist, AAFGCC

Caregivers may find that with so many responsibilities self care is placed as a lesser priority than care of a loved one.  Yet, staying physically and emotionally strong is key to healthier caregiving. To this end, this column is dedicated to health promotion and personal care for the caregiver.


Diabetes, Are You At Risk?
National Institute of Health


If you have wondered or possibly been told that you are at risk for developing diabetes or that you have prediabetes, you should know that diabetes prevention is proven, possible, and powerful. Studies show that people at high risk for diabetes can prevent or delay the onset of the disease by losing 5 to 7 percent of their weight, if they are overweight-that's 10 to 14 pounds for a 200-pound person. Two keys to success:

  • Get at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity five days a week.
  • Eat a variety of foods that are low in fat and reduce the number of calories you eat per day.

In other words, you don't have to knock yourself out to prevent diabetes. The key is: small steps that lead to big rewards. Learn more about your risk for developing type 2 diabetes and the small steps you can take to delay or prevent the disease and live a long, healthy life: Diabetes Is Preventable.

Quick Links


Like us on Facebook

Spotlighting Alzheimer's
Former Miss Universe Alicia Machando as Celebrity Contestant on Univision's Dance Competition

Today, more than 5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer's disease and while whites make up the great majority of the individuals with the disease, available research suggests that Hispanics are one and one-half times more likely than whites to develop Alzheimer's and other dementias.

"The Alzheimer's Association is committed to increasing awareness about Alzheimer's and other dementias among all Americans," said Gloria Smith, Alzheimer's Association Florida Gulf Coast Chapter Executive Director/President. "But given the disproportionate impact of Alzheimer's on the Hispanic community, we believe it especially important to elevate concern in this community and we applaud Alicia Machado in her effort to shine a light on the disease."

The Alzheimer's Association was chosen as the charity of choice by former Miss Universe, Alicia Machado, who competed in this season of Univision's reality show/dance competition ¡Mira Quién Baila! 3 (Look Who's Dancing).  
Photo by A. Mateo/Univision.com
The former Miss Universe and telenovela star joined nine other celebrities and 10 professional dancers as they competed on one of Univision's highest rated reality-competition shows, "¡Mira Quién Baila!" The program which aired Sunday evenings at 8pm ET/PT and 7pm CT chronicled the celebrity contestants' journey from workouts to rehearsals to dance performances. Winners were determined through a strict elimination process. Alicia Machado made it to the finals placing third.

The need for education, information and supportive services for families living with Alzheimer's and other dementias in diverse communities is paramount. The Association has an expansive portfolio of tools, information and culturally and linguistically appropriate resources in Spanish and English for families affected by Alzheimer's and other dementias at every stage of the disease.
Access to Rehab Services
National Alzheimer's Association

As one of the plaintiffs in the federal class action lawsuit Jimmo v. Sebelius, which challenged the Medicare Improvement Standard, the Alzheimer's Association applauds the recently announced proposed settlement. Under the settlement agreement, Medicare will pay for rehabilitative services, such as physical, speech and occupational therapy, if they maintain an individual's current condition or prevent or slow further deterioration and require the skills of a professional.
The holidays are a time when family and friends often come together. For families living with Alzheimer's and other dementias, the holidays can be challenging. With some planning and adjusted expectations, celebrations can still be happy, memorable occasions.

It is not uncommon for a loved one with a dementia to become overstimulated, agitated, or confused.  Holiday festivities often create changes in the environment and daily routine. It is important to keep your regular routine. Trying to maintain a pleasant, meaningful and calm holiday while caring for your loved one can lead to feelings of anxiety, loneliness, and frustration.


Hints for coping with the holidays:

  1. Keep your regular routine. It is important for you and your family member with dementia.
  2. Try to maintain a positive attitude. Keep in mind that the holidays are also a time for memories and reflection as well as a time for joy.
  3. Give yourself permission to say no to obligation or invitation.
  4. Give yourself permission to ask for and say yes to offers of assistance from family, friends, and neighbors.
  5. Encourage friends and family to visit, but keep the number of visitors at a time to a minimum.
  6. Prepare activities or tasks to divert your loved one's attention to prevent them from becoming overstimulated or agitated.
  7. Accept invitations and enjoy the chance to be with friends and family, even if your loved one cannot attend. 
  8. Talk of past good times - special memories.
  9. Plan a smaller gathering.
  10. Celebrate earlier in the day.
  11. Reduce post-holiday stress. Arrange for respite care so you can enjoy a movie or lunch with a friend

The holidays can be stressful. Stress can be minimized with adjusted perspectives and expectations.  Read more about the holidays and dementia. 

Caregiver Jewels
Emily Reese, Program. Specialist, AAFGCC

Welcome to Caregiver Jewels, a column featuring caregiving tips by family and professional caregivers throughout our 17 county service area.  These "golden nuggets" represent caregiving strategies and tricks of the trade. 


For the column to be a success we need your input!

It may be a "golden nugget" you say to get your loved one to attend a program or an activity to redirect their attention. Whether your tip is a diamond, emerald or ruby - all are valuable! So, please share the wealth!


Send your tip to reesee@alzflgulf.org or contact your local office.


December Tip

Redirection:  the Simple Way


Redirection is a tool or technique used to solve a behavioral problem. Redirecting an individual may delay or prevent outbursts and inappropriate behaviors.  Gentle distractions with food, drink or activity can be effective.  


A family caregiver from Collier County submitted the following nugget:  


My sweet husband loves M&Ms. It's amazing that he doesn't know where he sleeps; he doesn't know where the bathroom is, and doesn't even really know what to do with the toilet or the bed. But he hasn't forgotten where we keep the M&Ms. If he's getting agitated or wanting to wander, we can put some M&Ms in a bowl and show it to him, and he'll almost always get distracted and focus on his treat. 


The above illustrates how small and simple a solution can be. It reminds to not overlook the obvious and to keep redirection person centered.   


Remember redirection should be offered in a reassuring tone. Never focus your redirection on reprimand or by saying "no" or "don't do that".  The most important thing to remember is that each person is unique. Activities and conversations that successfully redirect one person may not work with someone else.


Note: The information in this column is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional or medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

If you have questions, concerns or just wish to talk to someone please feel free to contact us.  Our 24-hour HELPLINE number is 1-800-272-3900.

Erin Killian
Program Specialist
Alzheimer's Association Florida Gulf Coast Chapter
Sarasota Office Located at:
3277-A Fruitville Road
Sarasota, FL 34237
Telephone: 941-365-8883 Facsimile: 941-365-8885

Email: killiane@alzflgulf.org  

Website: www.alz.org/flgulfcoast

Sarasota County  

The Sarasota Update is made possible through support of 

Sarasota County Government. Visit them at www.scgov.net.

Alzheimer's Association - Florida Gulf Coast Chapter
Chapter Headquarters, 14010 Roosevelt Blvd., Suite 709, Clearwater, FL 33762 Telephone: 727.578.2558

National Headquarters-Alzheimer's Association National Office, 225 N. Michigan Ave., Fl. 17, Chicago, IL 60601

Alzheimer's Association is a not-for-profit  501(c)(3) organization © 2010 Alzheimer's Association. All rights reserved. 

24/7 Helpline: 1.800.272.3900