We were referred to this 81-year-old woman by a local skilled nursing facility. She had spent two months there rehabilitating after surgery to repair a hip she fractured during a fall. Since she is basically estranged from her son, her only family member, we helped her transition home to her second floor apartment in Hillcrest.

Prior to her accident she was entirely independent and everything she needed was within walking distance, so needing to climb stairs and requiring a walker to get home made life much more challenging. We helped her with grocery shopping and follow-up medical appointments for a couple of months until she was able to safely negotiate stairs and walk securely with a cane. At that point, she resumed her independent lifestyle and didn’t need our assistance any longer.

She resumed her independent lifestyle.

About a year later she was diagnosed with esophageal cancer and since all of her medical tests and appointments have been in the La Jolla area, we have served as her primary mode of transportation. Her social security income is less than $1,000 a month so she has taken a side job cleaning bathrooms at a small bar near where she lives to provide her with a little more money. She’s also very fortunate to have lived in her apartment for 16 years since her landlord has hardly raised her rent.

We were able to get her on the waiting list at a sudsidized senior residence with elevators in her area which would be much more affordable and enable her to discontinue her cleaning job. A unit is expected to become available within the next six months.