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Dear Friends and Neighbors,

CentraCare care givers have been working around the clock for more than 20 months to care for you, your families and friends during COVID. We are committed to caring for every Minnesotan who needs us, and nothing will prevent us from doing so – even during these never-seen-before times.

The challenge of providing this level of care is that our hospital beds are often full. ERs in all of our hospitals are packed. And our clinical teams are exhausted. Early in the pandemic, our community stepped up in amazing ways to help us. We ask that you again join us in fighting this pandemic together.

How can you help?

  • Please get your COVID vaccines and booster shots. They are proven safe and effective in reducing COVID illness, keeping people out of the hospital, and preventing death.
  • If your situation is not an emergency, please use other care options, including:
  • If this is a medical emergency, call 9-1-1, or visit the ER.

Together, we can do this. Thank you for your support.

Ken Holmen, MD
President and CEO

Resources to improve safety for people with dementia

Published in Rehabilitation Services, For the Health of It Author: Katrina V. Sand, OTR/L

How do you know if someone you suspect has dementia can safely live alone? St Cloud Hospital’s Adult Rehabilitation department, located at the CentraCare Health Plaza, does comprehensive Functional Cognitive Safety Evaluations to help answer this question.

Symptoms of dementia can vary greatly, but at least two out of five core mental functions must be significantly impaired to classify as dementia:

  1. Memory
  2. Communication and language
  3. Ability to focus and pay attention
  4. Reasoning and judgment
  5. Visual perception

Once a physician or health care provider orders the evaluation, the Functional Cognitive Safety Evaluation is conducted by an occupational therapist (OT). It features comprehensive, standardized assessments to identify specific areas of concern. The results provide a fair, objective evaluation of memory and other thinking skills that are necessary to live safely and independently.

If the evaluation results suggest that challenges with memory and thinking skills are present, individualized education, based on findings, will be provided. For instance, the OT will provide education on how these challenges may impact everyday life and give practical recommendations for improved safety and function. This may include topics like medication safety, fall prevention, financial management, home maintenance and driving safety.

If additional assistance is needed, referrals may be made to appropriate care providers for services such as physical therapy, speech therapy, social work and community resources. The goal is to connect people with the appropriate resources to meet their changing needs.

Learn more

  • Assess an older loved one’s health
  • Limit risk for falls
  • Prevent falls in your home
  • Medical alert system
  • Moving to a senior living community