KIPDA's Flourishing Intern

The profession of social work has broadened its focus from the norm of keeping children out of unsafe homes and placing them into the foster care system and providing eligible citizens with the proper means of accessing different government benefits, to wanting to understand how these systems can better help people. It is because of the realization of transferable social work skills that I was led to KIPDA.

As a practicum student, or intern, in the social work master’s program, it was my duty to find a placement that not only challenged what was being learned in class, but find a placement that also taught me ways to handle problems happening in the real world to real people. Although I completed my undergrad work at the University of Louisville, and later, as member of the Kent School of Social Work, I never heard of KIPDA nor did I know of the many wonderful services they provide for seniors, persons with disability and others falling within a category of their own.

After being introduced to the world of KIPDA and it service providers, the program I would like to recognize is Flourish. Flourish is a program meant to spark a conversation between the different professions working with a client/patient throughout the treatment process. A great deal of the Flourish model is within the medical arena because many of the patients have multiple chronic diseases and use a number of medications.

We all have a parent, an older uncle or aunt, or maybe older grandparents taking a number of medications for different minor to severe illnesses or pains. Depending on their illnesses, they might have two or more physicians, so these medications are often being prescribed by separate physicians. As clients, caregivers, or services providers, we are often neither nurses nor pharmacists and may not know how one medication interacts with another or when certain drug dosages are too high to take or expensive to buy. Well, this is where the Flourish team comes in to assist with this problem, along with others, for its clients. Clients are educated about their conditions, and they are connected to community resources.

Though not the most important service or program offered at KIPDA, Flourish, in my opinion, is most valuable. Elders and those with disabilities need their medications to survive. If there are ways to better manage the quantity and quality of their medications, think of how positive such addition could also affect their health outcomes.  

For more details about this program, contact one of KIPDA’s case managers.

                                               —Dolly Nyemah