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COA will add some programs

February 19, 2010 by WLKM 

The St. Joseph County Commission on Aging (COA) is adding two new programs to the array of services it offers to senior citizens.

In action during its February meeting on Wednesday (February 17th), the COA Board voted to enter into an agreement with the Area Agency on Aging for additional grant dollars to implement Personal Action Toward Health (PATH), a chronic disease self-management program designed to help adults learn to better manage their chronic conditions.

Through PATH, trained leaders meet with their groups for two-and-a-half hours each week for six consecutive weeks. The program, developed at Stanford University, does not replace traditional patient education with the doctor or health profession, but is complementary to and reinforces such education.

According to COA Executive Director Lynn Coursey, the grant is for $26,680 over a two-year period to serve a minimum of 33 clients.

The COA Board also voted to enter into an agreement with Veterans Home Care of Michigan, LLC to participate in a program that provides in-home services to veterans and their spouses.

In other business, the board authorized the expenditure of up to $45,000 from the COA’s contingency fund to purchase a new, six-passenger van, outfitted to accommodate wheel-chairs. The van will replace a medical escort vehicle that was declared a total loss after it was struck by another vehicle that failed to make a complete stop. Coursey indicated that loss of the van has created inefficiency in the transportation services offered by the COA. Use of the agency’s funds is a way to expedite replacement of the vehicle which otherwise might take nearly a year to accomplish.

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