Personalities

Caring for Our Elders  

Pam Goodman, along with her fellow registered nurse Becky Peters, presciently founded her organization back in 1983. This was decades before the tidal wave of Baby Boomers began going grey. If it’s true that “demography is destiny,” then senior care is set for steady growth as America’s population inexorably ages.

The Lifespan Team | Pictured Above: (Front row) Saundie Isaak, Becky Peters, Pam Goodman, and Nicole Sultana. (back row) Stacy Ybarra, Vanessa Magee, Francie Newfield, Jen Lee, Denise Mickel, Alicia Cortez, and Ashley Min.

Goodman, a self-described “California girl born and bred,” earned a bachelor’s degree in nursing from Humboldt State University. She tells Gentry, “A couple of years into my career, I started getting so many calls from people asking, ‘Where do we begin the process of finding elder care for our loved ones?’” Both natural problem solvers, she and the now-retired Peters bounced assorted business ideas off one another before Lifespan began blazing a trail in the industry.

The organization, consisting of approximately 80 employees, celebrates its 35th anniversary in fine fettle. Lifespan’s experienced array of nurses, social workers, and homecare aides are accessible around the clock. Its employees provide crucial help scheduling medications, doctor appointments, and facilities placement, among many other services. Goodman points out, “We know all of the area’s assisted living facilities and work with clients to find them the best match. Lifespan also has great relationships with hospices in Santa Clara County.” Additionally, it arranges in-home care for select veterans in Monterey, and has a contract to help the county’s HIV/ AIDS patients.

An innovative recent addition to Life-span’s wide array of offerings is its pioneering Well-Being plan. Helping seniors live more independent lives, this unique program centers around the four key pillars of intellectual, emotional, spiritual, and physical support. Goodman adds, “It’s important to have someone who does not just take care of you, but also helps you actualize activities that can improve your quality of life.” To this end, nurses or social workers will make an initial assessment, after which a personal assistant is matched with the individual for carefully curated activities that might include attending the theater, museums, or concerts. Lifespan even has an on-board art therapist. “Making new social connections and engaging in stimulating pastimes can reduce depression rates among the elderly,” Goodman says.

Lifespan is actively involved in philanthropic activities and community outreach. On September 22, it will sponsor and send a team to the Walk to End Alzheimer’s fundraiser, an event it has participated in for several years.

Goodman’s good heart extends to friends of the four-legged variety. She is the proud owner of two rescue dogs that can often be found accompanying her to work. Lifespan has also helped canine-loving clients who are unable to take their pets to assisted living facilities by working with local animal shelters in finding them new homes.

Summing up, she says, “I truly love my job, and the many unique and special people I’ve met through it.” Thanks to Goodman, many Golden State residents are able to more fully enjoy their golden years.


www.lifespancare.com

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