A Respite for Caregivers and Opportunities for Seniors

Warrenton Adult Day Healthcare Center

Photos by Kara Thorpe

When the day comes that an elderly loved one requires additional care or supervision, it can be overwhelming to weigh all of the different options. The senior’s family members have likely planned for this time in advance but when the time comes, there is so much more to consider than they had previously anticipated. Many caregivers will move to working part-time or retire from their job in order to care for their senior full-time. 

Rappahannock Rapidan Community Services (RRCS) is here to say: you’re not alone and you have options. “Our mission is to provide support services to the community and support family members and caregivers as well as the seniors,” said Susan Walters, who is the Health and Caregiver Support Services Manager at RRCS. Susan oversees the Warrenton Adult Day Healthcare Center, along with many other healthcare support programs. An entity since 1990, the Adult Day Healthcare Center (WADHC) moved into its new location in Warrenton in 2003. “Our presence is there in Warrenton,” Walters said. “But we serve the surrounding communities as well. It’s a very safe, secure environment.”

The center, which is regulated and licensed by the Department of Social Services, is housed in the Warrenton Community Center along with the Fauquier Senior Center and Fauquier County Parks & Recreation Department. The Warrenton ADHC provides a nurturing, safe environment for adults who need assistance with daily health and personal care activities. “It’s so vitally important as a respite entity because most caregivers in the home don’t have any personal time,” Walters said. “They have someone at home with a functional or cognitive issue that they can’t leave at home alone. They’re having to care for their loved one 24/7 so they don’t have to resort to a more permanent solution like assisted living.”

RRCS offers many resources and assistance to caregivers because they understand how important respite is for those who are caring for their loved ones full-time. “Even having as little as four hours, two days a week of free time can make the caregiving process so much easier,” Walters said. “They know they have a safe place to take their loved ones while they do things like go grocery shopping or attend their own regular doctor appointments.” Since the WADHC is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m., caregivers can even continue to work if they choose to do that. 

“Some people come all day, every day,” Walters said. “Some people come two days a week. It’s whatever fits their lifestyle and schedule. Our seniors can interact and socialize and be part of the programs that the Senior Center, which is held next door, has available.” The list of activities that the Senior Center offers is varied and extensive; members of the WADHC can participate in board games, puzzles, Jeopardy, and — everyone’s favorite — Bingo. More dynamic activities include volleyball, kickball, and the bean bag toss. 

It’s important to note that there is an application and approval process required to participate in the WADHC program. “The rate is reasonable in relation to having in-home care services, and it is on a sliding scale,” Walters said. “A support coordinator for the county will go into the home and do an assessment and will assist the caregiver in determining a plan of action. I encourage people to come in even before that to come take a tour and check it out.”

The Warrenton ADHC serves adults 18 and older who meet admission requirements: Reside in Culpeper, Madison, Orange, Rappahannock, Fauquier, or other nearby counties; have an identified need for ADHC services; be at risk for institutional placement without ADHC supportive services; and do not have current needs deemed to be a danger to self or others.

The program offers care and supervision provided by certified aides and nurses, social and recreational programs based on individual interests, health monitoring with medication administration and/or medication supervision, a person-centered plan of care developed with the participant and family, a nutritious lunch and two snacks per day, and access to care coordinators and other aging services. “We tailor the plan of care and activities to what each person’s needs and interests are,” Walters said. They can participate if they want and we encourage it, but it’s what they want to do. Among other things, the participants are able to get socialization and even develop camaraderie. They can really get into participating in the activities.”

WADHC encourages caregivers and seniors to come in and see all the benefits they offer. “We are very interested in having folks come in and take a tour through the building, and ask any questions,” Walters said. 

The Warrenton ADHC accepts CCC+ (Medicaid managed care), private pay on a sliding scale and some private insurances. Transportation is available in some areas. For more information about the Warrenton ADHC, contact them today at 540-825-3100, ext. 3464.

Hannah Samlall
About Hannah Samlall 27 Articles
Hannah Samlall is a graduate of Virginia Tech. In 2017, she moved home from The Big Apple to partner with her sister to launch Waterloo Street, a digital marketing agency that offers social media management and content writing for small businesses and entrepreneurs. When she's not working, you can find her exploring outdoors, whipping up a delicious meal or snuggling with her kitten, Dunks.

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