Peter Blanchard, executive director of Brookdale Muskogee, talks about how his parents impacted his career.
WHAT DREW YOU TO THE FIELD OF HEALTH CARE?
"Growing up, I watched my father provide care for my quadriplegic mother, who had Multiple Sclerosis. My father had no background in medicine or caregiving; he just had an immense love for my mother. That experience has impacted both my career and my life in many wonderful ways."
WHAT CHALLENGES DO YOU FACE IN YOUR FIELD?
"Families are struggling with the same issues my father had caring for my mother, especially when it comes to caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s or dementia. I watched my father struggle caring for my mother, watched him feel inadequate about not knowing everything and become frustrated and feeling guilty with wanting time to himself. Families need to know all that is natural and that there are resources available to assist them."
WHAT’S THE NUMBER ONE THING YOU WANT PATIENTS TO KNOW?
"Even though people may not be experts on aging or health care for their aging parents, there are many resources available to people here locally to help inform, educate and provide assistance here in the Muskogee area. A couple of great resources here in town are the Area Agency on Aging and the Alzheimer’s Association. Brookdale Muskogee is sponsoring a local Alzheimer’s Association support group for families with a loved one with Alzheimer’s or Dementia that’s free to the public. Don’t be shy about asking for info or help."
Know somebody who is making a difference in the area through their volunteer efforts? Let us know so we can feature them in a spotlight. Send email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call (918) 684-2929 and speak to Executive Editor Elizabeth Ridenour.