In 1980, Teresa Shanahan, Ph.D., began Lifeline in an effort to bring the valuable insight she gained through years of working in gerontology, psychology, and recreational therapy together for her community. Dr. Shanahan knew that by helping older adults remain as independent and engaged as possible, she could improve their cognitive function and quality of life.
Dr. Shanahan saw the benefit of having a professional Care Manager at doctor appointments to convey pertinent information from other physicians and to relay physician recommendations back to the family. She solved medication compliance issues by putting a medication system in place and educating families and facilities on administration protocol. Dr. Shanahan gathered a team of, experienced caregivers to provide additional support for clients and trained them on the benefits of using the activity calendars she tailored to each client’s needs. Whether that meant making sure Mrs. Jones is able to attend the garden club meetings or that Mr. Johnson’s bathroom renovation is completed on time, Dr. Shanahan and her team were committed to maintaining independence while providing assistance as needed.
As business grew, Lifeline’s team of Care Managers expanded to include a multitude of strengths that complement each other beautifully. Weekly clinical meetings ensured that all Care Managers had input on a client’s care plan. Such teamwork developed a reputation for personalized service, professionalism, and most importantly, expertise in improving quality of life while managing complex health issues. Care tailored to the individual proved to be especially instrumental for dementia patients. In 1996, the Alzheimer’s Association recognized Lifeline’s success with this patient population and a lasting partnership was born.
As the industry leader in dementia care, Dr. Shanahan developed training programs and seminars for facilities with dementia units. The success of the staff sensitivity training led Dr. Shanahan to develop further training for other professionals who dealt with elderly clients including estate planning attorneys, fiduciaries, hospice staff, church communities, and financial professionals.
Lifeline's goals from inception remain the same as they are today – to provide unparalleled client service and community education that improves the lives of elders and those with special needs.
I just want to take a moment to say thank you for all you have done to be of service and of help to my great-uncle and myself! The service you provide has taken a huge burden from my mind and my shoulders over this past year.
When we began this journey of finding out that my great-uncle has Alzheimer’s disease, you came highly recommended by a social worker from the team that gave us his diagnosis. I told her I needed support since I am the only family here in-state for my great-uncle and his needs were not completely met by his retirement community. She said that she thought you would be a perfect match for us, and that Dr. Shanahan’s skills for helping in companion care and care management needs would suit us well. She was so right!
You have been able to find a fantastic companion for my great-uncle. He really cares and keeps my great-uncle engaged in activities he has always loved—golf, sightseeing, chess and eat out around town. He has also been extremely consistent and reliable. You have also found a care manager who is second-to-none in her ability to help guide us through the friendliness and helpfulness of your office staff, and I am now also very impressed with the flexibility of your companion care hours. As my husband and I are young professionals and are now also becoming first-time parents, this flexibility and attention to quality in the care that you provide is immeasurably important to us. You have helped us to give my great-uncle the freedom of living the life he desires in retirement; and you have given us back the balance of providing care and spending time with him as much as we want, while still have the time to work and live for ourselves.
— Jennifer Mannino —