Caregiver Series


Each individual’s circumstance differs, but most share a common thread—no one is prepared to take on the role on caregiver. This annual series is meant to address concerns and issues faced by caregivers of all ages and circumstances.

Every spring,  the Geriatric Medicine Department offers its annual Caregivers' Series at the Athens Public Library with support from Case Western Reserve Geriatric Education Center.

Click on the links below for additional information and resources.











"There are four kinds of people
   in this world:

Those who have been caregivers,

Those who currently are caregivers,

Those who will be caregivers, and

Those who will need caregivers."

~Rosalynn Carter

2014 Caregiver Series

Caregiving for Yourself and Others as You Age

 Every Tuesday in May, 2014 from 6:00 to 7:30 PM.  Free and open to the public.

Weekly Program Schedule

6:00 – 6:15 pm – Refreshments and Socializing

6:15 – 7:15 pm – Presentation

7:15 – 7:30 pm – Refreshments and Socializing


May 6, 2014

Just Getting Old... or Medication and Side Effects

  • Sarah Adkins, Pharm.D., BCACP


May 13, 2014

Restoring Nutrition in the Elderly: Open Discussion

  • Jen-Tzer Gau, MD, Associate Professor, OU-HCOM, Department of Geriatric Medicine

  • Jill Garland, MFN, RD, LD, Master of Food and Nutrition, Registered Dietitian, Licensed Dietitian


May 20, 2014

Care to Make Time for Your “Self”

  • Stacia Davis Moore, BFA, Artist and Entrepreneur


May 27, 2014

Matter of Balance: Managing Concerns about Falls

  • Joyce Lewis, Community Services Director, United Seniors of Athens County

  • Susan Pitts, Day Living Director, United Seniors of Athens County

  • Sandy Shirey, Corporation for Ohio Appalachian Development (COAD), Assistant for Athens County and COAD-RSVP Vinton County Director


Sponsored by:

  • Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine, Department of Geriatric Medicine

  • Athens Public Library

  • College of Health Sciences and Professions

Respite care (in-home coverage) is available on a limited basis.

For more information contact

Brooke Hallowell, Ph.D., 740-593-1356


For more information contact Deborah Meyer, Ph.D., RN:


Annual Caregiver Series 2013

  • Getting Your Ducks in Order: Planning for the future
    Mindy Cayton, Planner, Buckeye Hills Area Agency on Aging 8
    Joan L. Stroh, M.Ed., PCC, LSW Counselor/Social Worker

  • End of Life Decisions: When death nears, pain control, involving children/grandchildren, home vs. residential care.
    Cynthia Kuttner, M.D., OU-HCOM, Department of Geriatric Medicine

  • Managing Medications: Organizing, safety, disposal, use of herbal and OTC medications.
    Sarah Adkins, Pharm.D., BCACP

  • Music, Memory and Mood: Music’s influence on memory and dementia, anxiety and agitation.
    Celia Hollander Lewis, MT-BC, Activity Therapist, Senior Psychiatric Center, Marietta Memorial Hospital and
    Gay Dalzell, RMT, Music Therapist Arcadia Valley Skilled Nursing & Rehab and Kimes Convalescent Center
    Both presenters are musicians for Appalachian Community VNA Hospice and Health Services, Inc. Hospice Music Program.

Annual Caregiver Series 2012

  • Making Transfers Easier and Safer & Assistive Devices
    James Odenthal, Dr. P.H., P.T, OU College of Health Sciences and Professions School of Rehabilitation and Communication Sciences

  • Advance Directives, Guardianship and Other Legal Issues
    William Walker, Attorney at Law

  • Selecting Residential Care and Understanding Code Status
    Cynthia Kuttner, M.D., OU-HCOM, Department of Geriatric Medicine

  • How to Talk to Doctors
    Penny Shelton, MD, Holzer Health Systems, Athens

  • Preventing Boredom: Activities to Keep You Going
    Deena Webster, Activity Director, Kimes Nursing and Rehab Center

Annual Caregiver Series 2011

  • Ergonomics and Independent Living: In-Home Tools & Tips

    Diana Schwerha, Ph.D., Russ College of Engineering and Technology

  • How to Deal with Disruptive Behavior: Cues and Clues

    Joan Stroh, L.P.C.C., L.S.W., private practice

  • Staying  in Motion: Preventing Falls

    David Russ, Ph.D.., P.T, OU School of Physical Therapy

  • Prevention of Complications: Yes, You Can

    Maureen Clother, D.O., OU-HCOM Dept. of Geriatric Medicine

  • Palliative Care: Myths & Benefits

    Tracy Marx, D.O., OU-HCOM Dept. of Family Medicine

Annual Caregiver Series 2010

  • Keeping Your Own Brain Working Its Best
    Find out how to optimize your memory as you age.

    Julie Suhr, Ph.D., Associate Professor, OU-Dept. of Psychology

  • Making Transfers Easier and Safer
    Practice transferring individuals who cannot stand or move unaided.

    Averell  (Tootie) Overby, Dr. P.H., P.T, Director, OU School of Physical Therapy

  • Medications and Memory
    Learn how medications can impact memory positively & negatively.

    Wayne Carlsen, D.O., Chair, OU-HCOM Dept. of Geriatric Medicine

  • Vitamin D’s Vital Role in Health: What You Need to Know
    Discuss effects of Vitamin D and what is considered an adequate level.

    Jen-Tzer Gau, M.D., Ph.D., Assistant Professor, OU-HCOM  Dept. of Geriatric Medicine


Annual Caregiver Series 2009

  • Where’s My Keys: Normal vs. Abnormal Memory Lapses

    Julie Suhr, Ph.D.

  • Dealing with Challenging Behaviors

    Joan Stroh, M.Ed., L.P.C.C., L.S.W., private practice

  • Medicare & Medicaid: Clearing the Confusion “Blueprint for Lifelong Planning”

    Mindy Cayton Area Agency on Aging

  • Nursing Home Placement: When & How

    Wayne Carlsen, D.O., OU-HCOM Dept. of Geriatric Medicine/Gerontology

  • Taking Care of Yourself : Physically, Emotionally & Spiritually

    Kim Valentour, M.S.


Annual Caregiver Series 2008

  • Resources for the Caregiver

  • Joan Stroh, M.Ed., L.P.C.C., L.S.W., private practice

    Cathy Ash, L.S.W., Area Agency on Aging

  • Legal Issues

  • William Walker, Attorney-at-Law

  • Making Tough Decisions

Wayne Carlsen, D.O., OU-HCOM Dept. of Geriatric Medicine/Gerontology Joan Stroh, M.Ed., L.P.C.C., L.S.W., private practice

  • Physical Activity

  • Edward Potkanowicz, Ph.D., Ohio University College of Health Sciences and Professions

  • Dealing with the Health Care System

  • Tina McClelland, R.N., University Medical Associates, Geriatric Clinic and Joan Stroh, M.Ed., L.P.C.C., L.S.W., private practice

Return to the Top of the Page


OU Respite Volunteer Program

The Ohio University Respite Volunteer Program includes a network of trained volunteers who will provide in-home relief to caregivers of adults in Athens.

During volunteer visits to the home, the caregiver has the option of leaving or remaining at home with the volunteer. Respite services are also available for caregivers who do not necessarily live with the person receiving care.

"We respect caregivers and realize they know tremendously more about the patient than (students) with an academic base," said Brooke Hallowell, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Ohio University School of Hearing, Speech and Language Sciences.

All volunteers must complete a training session with program coordinators and are restricted to graduate and some undergraduate students from the School of Hearing and Speech Sciences.

The program benefits caregivers and their loved ones in direct and meaningful ways, and provides students a wonderful way to contribute meaningfully to people in our community," said Brooke Hallowell, Ph.D., Director, Ohio University School of Hearing, Speech and Language Sciences. Respite activities are tailored to each individual family's needs.

 For more information, contact Dr. Brooke Hallowell at (740) 593-1356.

Return to the Top of the Page


Caregiver Organizations



Advanced Directives Materials

For more information about Advance Directives, you may contact: Kate Oches, Social Worker for VNA and Tammy Hawk, Social Worker for Hospice at (740) 594-8226 or (800) 837-1112 if you are outside of Athens County.



Return to the Top of the Page



o    Medicare covered skilled care;

o    your rights and protections; and

o    where you can get help with your questions.


Nursing Homes

Assistive Devices

Alzheimer’s Disease/Dementia (online version)

Alzheimer's Disease Education and Referral Center, National Institute on Aging (This Web site includes information about ongoing studies.)

Return to the Top of the Page

Booklets and Other Publications Available Online


  • Fall of Freddie the Leaf: A Story of Life for All Ages, by Leo Buscaglia.
  • Begley, Sharon, Train Your Mind Change the Brain, Ballantine Books, 2007
  • Cohen, Donna, Ph.D and Eisdorfer,Carl,Ph.D., M.D., Caring for Your aging Parents, A Planning and Action Guide, New York, Penguin Putnam,1995.
  • Denholm Diana B. The Caregiving Wife's Handbook. Alameda, CA: Hunter House Inc., 2012.
  • Levine, Carol, Always on Call, When Illness Turns Families into Caregivers, New York, United Hospital Fund, 2000.
  • Mace, Nancy L., M.A., and Rabins, Peterv.,M.D., The 36 Hour Day: A Family Guide to Caring for Persons with Alxheimer's Disease, Related Dementing Illnesses and Memory Loss Later in Life. Baltimore, MD, The Johns Hopkins University Press.
  • Morris, Virginia, How to Care for Aging Parents, New York, Workman, 1996.
  • Visiting Nurse Association of America, Caregivers Handbook: a Complete Guide to Home Health Care, New York, DK Publishing, 1998.

Return to the Top of the Page








Ohio University
Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine
Grosvenor Hall, Athens, Ohio 45701

Last updated: 02/11/2015