Most Ohioans would prefer to stay in their own homes and communities for as long as possible. With meaningful opportunities to engage with their communities, older Ohioans can live happier, healthier lives and contribute in meaningful ways. A safe home is crucial to give our elders these opportunities.
However, as we age, our physical and social needs can change, and our homes that have kept us safe for so long may no longer be appropriate for our current situation. Sometimes, only minor changes are needed to make your home safe again.
On this page, you'll find a variety of resources and different types of information to help you or your older loved one remain "safe at home." Your area agency on aging is a great source of information for local services and resources.
Home Maintenance, Repair and Modification
Home maintenance, repair and modification services help older Ohioans preserve existing property values and make structural modifications or repairs necessary to help them live safely.
Funding for these services comes from a combination of public and private funding and local resources. Work is provided by licensed contractors and others. Contact your area agency on aging for more information about the services available in your community.
Home energy costs particularly affects Ohioans on fixed or low incomes. The Department of Aging partners with the Ohio Development Services Agency, the Office of the Ohio Consumers' Counsel and the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio to provide programs and information to help eligible older Ohioans meet the rising cost of energy.
Energy Assistance Programs sponsored by the Ohio Development Services Agency help low-income Ohioans of all ages deal with the high costs of heating or cooling their homes.
For more information on these programs, call toll-free 1-800-282-0880, visit the HEAP page at the Ohio Development Services Agency, or contact your area agency on aging.
The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio can answer consumer's questions and help resolve issues with providers of electric, natural gas, telephone, water, or household moving services. They offer the Lifeline Telephone Assistance Program to help make basic local telephone service more affordable for income-eligible Ohioans, as well as the Apples to Apples comparison tool to get the most out of energy choice programs, and much more. Call the consumer help line at 1-800-686-7826.
For a variety of reasons, older friends and relatives may have a harder time adjusting during emergencies and extreme conditions than younger people do. Be prepared with an emergency plan and kit and check in on older loved ones and neighbors during severe weather and other emergencies.
Have a plan that will allow you to remain in place for at least three days should you be unable to leave your home due to weather conditions or other emergencies:
(Adapted from "Emergency Management Be-Prepared Kit," available from the Red Cross)
If severe weather is forecasted or has just occurred, or if another type of emergency has occurred, check in on older friends and family members to ensure that they are okay and that they have the resources they need to stay safe and healthy.
Do a risk assessment:
Check vital supplies:
Determine his or her access to help:
Occasionally, during extreme situations, an older adult may appear confused or disoriented. Don't assume this is a normal reaction or due to dementia. Conditions such as dehydration, stress and fatigue can have the same symptoms. When assisting someone who appears confused or disoriented:
Older adults are at increased risk for injury or death from home fires. Some simple preventive steps can reduce the risk of a blaze and increase the chances that you or your loved ones will be able to safely escape if a home fire does occur.
Have a plan
Be smart with appliances and cords
If you or a loved one needs help to plan for a fire or assistance with smoke alarms, contact your local fire department or area agency on aging, or call the American Red Cross at 1-844-207-4509.
Winter Weather Safety:
Elder abuse refers to any knowing, intentional or negligent act by a caregiver or any other person that causes harm or a serious risk of harm to a vulnerable adult, according to the U.S. Administration for Community Living. It also includes the failure, through action or inaction of the individual of another person, to meet the individual's basic needs fore safety and well-being. Learn more...
Use these easy-to-print tip and fact sheets to educate yourself or others about topics related to elder safety.
Home Health and Safety
Assistive Technology of Ohio is a federally funded nonprofit organization that is part of the College of Engineering at The Ohio State University. AT Ohio helps Ohioans of all ages remain independent as their physical abilities change. Their services include device lending and rental, computer refurbishing, training and more. Devices that can help older adults remain safely and independent in their homes include: Low hearing and vision aides, medication reminder systems, communication devices, dining assistance devices, home automation equipment and more. Call 1-800-784-3425 to learn more.
Older Americans Act Programs
STEADY U Ohio Falls Prevention
Ohio Committee for
Severe Weather Awareness
Flu in Ohio
Ohio Emergency Management Agency
Emergency Management Be Prepared Kit
Missing Adult Alerts
(Ohio Attorney General)
Emergency Contact Information
Next of Kin Program
Assistive Technology of Ohio
Public Utilities Commission of Ohio
Ohio Department of Taxation
Save The Dream Ohio
National Council on Aging
Tweets by OhioMissing
Learn more about Missing Adult Alerts
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