Caroline Medical Adult Day Care celebrates 30 years

From left, Nina Lewis, Kathy Wooters, Lacey Phillips, Kathy Geisel, Scott LeRoy, Edna Garlic, Diane Listman, Caroline Layden, Rhonda Martin, America McKinney and Carole Friend stand in front of the Caroline Medical Adult Day Care 30th anniversary banner inside the HAPS Building in Denton.

DENTON — Caroline Medical Adult Day Care in Denton celebrates its 30th anniversary in September, and will host an open house from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 18.

The care center, located on the first floor of the Health and Public Services Building in Denton, provides respite care — assisting people 16 years old in above with physical, psychological and emotional needs to remain in their homes and in the community as independently as possible.

Clients, who are under the direction of a primary physician, are supervised by a registered nurse at center, and the services include medication administration, medical treatments, personal care, transportation to and from the center and to local medical appointments, recreational and therapeutic activities, family-style breakfast and lunch, social work assistance and socialization.

Caroline Medical Adult Day Care is sponsored by the Caroline County Health Department, and is one of two adult day care centers in Maryland to be sponsored by the Maryland Department of Health.

“I became a nurse because I enjoy people and love people,” said Caroline Medical Adult Day Care Director Edna Garlic who began at the center seven years ago and has been a nurse for 36 years. “I want to help them with their care. I know that I’m helping the families and the clients. A lot of them are by themselves and have no one to talk to. Us talking with them makes their day.

“The clients get to feel like family,” she said. “We have a great staff. We are one big, happy family.”

The center is open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. Family members or caregivers drop off clients. Drivers from the center will pick clients up to bring them to the center for the day.

There are about 25 clients a day at the center, which is licensed for 67. Clients could have Alzheimer’s, dementia, special needs or other conditions or illnesses.

The center has had up to 54 clients on the roster. The longest-running client has been coming to the center for about 20 years.

“We help clients remain in the community instead of being institutionalized too soon,” said Physical Accounts Clerk Diane Listman who began at the center in 1989. “We keep them out of nursing homes and in and out of hospitals. We are medical so we can monitor everything through their physicians orders.”

Clients do two activities a day — one in the morning and one in the afternoon. The activities include music therapy, exercise, horseshoes, bowling, trips outside around Denton and going out to lunch once a month.

“I have always loved the Adult Medical Daycare program,” Listman said. “I’ve seen over the years the people come in and be so down or so ill, but with the care of the day care, we get them feeling good. We socialize. They get to go on trips. They get to play games. It is a great program that people don’t really know we offer.”

The center has four bus drivers, four aides, activity director, fill-time nurse, relief nurse, physical counts clerk and a social worker.

The staff works with a client’s primary physician and monitors the medical levels such as weight, blood sugar and blood pressure.

“Every month we send a medical report to their doctors so that gives the doctors an update on a client’s blood pressures, their blood sugar levels and how their diabetes are doing,” Garlic said. “We track their weight, which can be an indicators to a more serious development.”

Caroline Medical Adult Day Care also partners with the Maryland Veterans Affairs, the Delaware VA, Alzheimer’s Association and Caroline Foundation.

Social Worker Carole Friend writers grants and helps bring clients to the center.

“Carole has really been beneficial to this program because she writes many grants,” Listman said.

Caroline Medical Adult Day Care also offers a Caregivers Support Group from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. the first Monday of each month.

In 1989, Caroline County Health Officer Dr. John Grant sponsored and began the Caroline Medical Adult Day Care. The first location was at the Caroline Nursing Home. The next location was at Homestead Manor Assisted Living. The last 19 years, the center has been located at the HAPS Building in Denton.

For more information on Caroline Medical Adult Day Care, visit www.carolinehd.org/medical-adult-day-services or call 410-479-8065.

Follow Caroline/Dorchester Editor Dustin Holt on Twitter @Dustin_StarDem.

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