(Polls run approximately 4 months) Comments by Michael True, Publisher of Independent Life Resources.
1. (Apr. - July '03) If you could recieve care/support in your home would you rather live there than in a group setting?
Response: Yes, definitely ! 88%, Not sure 5%, Definitely NOT ! 6%, Total Responses: 60
A resounding 88% liked the idea of maintaining a home for personal residence. No big surprises here.
2. (Aug. - Nov. '03) Your priorities for spending state and federal tax monies -
Response: Military and National/ Homeland Security 33%, Health and Personal Care, Medicade, Medicare, Related Social Services 33%, Public Education and General Research funding 16%, Infastructure: roads, bridges, transportation programs, etc. 0%, Farms , food production, FDA services, etc. 16%, Total Responses: 6
Interestingly enough after 4 months of being posted only 6 people responded! Few seem to want to think about this one...hmmm.
3. (Dec. '03 - Mar. '04) How important is accessibility to you? Examples: sidewalks, buildings, restrooms, theaters, parks -
Response: Very Important 75%, Somewhat Important 11%, Not Too Important 13%, Not Sure 0%, Total Responses: 61
The standards of access provided for in the Adults with Disabilities Act, (ADA), continue to be an important factor in everyday life for many American citizens. Future planning in the construction of buildings, sidewalks, parks, and other public places must reflect this need.
4. (Apr. - Aug. '04) Do the Direct Care Staff/Personal Attendents in your area have good training? -
Response: Seem very well trained 25%, Seem adequately trained 8%, Seem poorly trained 42%, Seem to have no training 10%, Not Sure 12% Total Responses: 47
With a combined negative slant of 52%, we undoubtedly need to do more to improve training procedures or at least to demonstrate that the existing training is adequate to meet the needs of those served. With one of the highest employee turnovers, the direct care staff development process must continue to be improved. Perhaps pre-vocational classes should be offered at the high school level to increase our preparedness in this fast-growing career area.
5. (Sept. - Dec. '04) Who would better manage support programs and services for citizens with long-term care needs? -
Response: Private for-profit companies 7%, Government agencies 12%, Combined Private and Government groups 60%, Not Sure 19% Total Responses: 56As has been the case for many years now, it would seem the general public wants to allow private companies to continue to operate provider services, but not without a great deal of government control and oversight. But are we prepared to fund the agencies who will be developing or monitoring these ever-expanding programs and services?
6. (Jan. - June '05)Food, clothing, housing, medical treatment, transportation, and personal assistance costs continue to dominate most personal budgets. Despite the best efforts at planning for the present or the future, many individuals find themselves falling short of the financial resources necessary to meet even their most basic needs. Is this an issue with you or someone you know? Where does the money crunch hit the hardest? - Do you or someone you know need additional financial resources to provide for:
Response: Food/Utilities/Clothing 11%, Housing 36%, Transportation 15%, Medical Care/Perscriptions 15%, Personal Assistance 21% Total Responses: 155
Because of the increase in responses I let this poll go on for 6 months. Throughout the Housing needs stayed at or near the top. Personal Assistance ranked second, overall. If I were to speculate I would say that most of the people responding are focused on paying the other expenses first and then trying to juggle what little is left over to keep up with the rent or house payments.
7. (July - Dec. 05)It is difficult to say whether or not our ability to move about is getting better or worse. New restrictions and procedures for those flying on private air carriers, increases in the cost of gasolene, constant changes, often reductions, in public transportation services, all have had their effect on the travelor. What do you find to be the best way to travel these days? For making long trips, (100 miles or more), I prefer to travel by:
Responses: Car or Van (private) 66%, Bus 2%, Airplane 14%, Train 5%, Seldom/Never travel long distances 11%, Total Answers: 92
2/3 of the responses to this poll occured following the Katrina/Rita hurricane evacuations. Prioer to that time the majority of resposes were falling into the seldom/never category. The auto (van) manufactures should take note that adapted vehicles are the wave of the future... if only they were converted to alternative energy power sources!