Essential Services

These resources can help you find assistance

When setting up aging services, you may have a cloud of questions and concerns. Fortunately, many Chicago-area organizations provide helpful resources for a range of situations.

Start your search for assistance by reviewing these service categories to see what type of resources you might need to consider.

Review lists of specific Chicago-area organizations online at Seniors Blue Book, and Elderwerks Educational Services. An excellent primer to have around is Who Will Take Care of Me When I’m Old? by local writer Joy Loverde.

As always, quality is important in choosing service providers. Consider whether a provider is an active member of a local healthcare group such as the Illinois Continuity of Care Association (il-coc.org). Or check a provider’s star rating from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (cms.gov).

These umbrella agencies connect older adults and caregivers to community services: AgeOptions in suburban Cook County (ageoptions.org), AgeGuide in the collar counties (ageguide.org), and Chicago Department of Family & Support Services in the city of Chicago (cityofchicago.org/aging).

Community resources

  • Advocacy for seniors
  • Area agencies on aging
  • Home-delivered meals
  • LGBTQ+ resources
  • Nutrition and food services
  • Pet-care and services
  • Transportation
  • Travel
  • Veteran centers and services

End-of-life resources

  • Funeral, cremation and mortuary services
  • Hospice services
  • Palliative care

Financial

  • Financial assistance and services
  • Reverse mortgages
  • Social Security consulting
  • Veterans benefits

Health and care insurance

  • Health insurance information and counseling
  • Long-term care insurance
  • Medicare and Medicaid information and counseling

Home transitions

  • Bathroom conversions
  • Community placement specialists
  • Downsizing and relocation services
  • Estate cleanout
  • Home improvements and modifications
  • Home safety evaluations
  • Move management and organizers
  • Moving services
  • Real estate services
  • Stairlifts

Housing and care referrals

  • Affordable housing
  • Assisted living
  • Homecare
  • Home health care
  • Independent living
  • Long-term skilled nursing resources
  • Respite care
  • Sheltered care
  • Short-term rehabilitation
  • Supportive living

Legal

  • Crime prevention
  • Elder abuse
  • Elder law
  • Estate planning
  • Guardianship/conservatorship
  • Long-term-care ombudsmen

Physical and mental health

  • Associations for specific illnesses
  • County health departments
  • Dental resources
  • Hearing resources
  • Home medical equipment and supplies
  • Incontinence care
  • Lending closets
  • Memory assessment programs
  • Mental health and counseling
  • Oxygen services
  • Prescription assistance and discounts
  • Vision services

Programs and support

  • Adult daycare programs
  • Community centers with senior activities
  • Continuing education opportunities
  • Pet resources
  • Programs for those with disabilities
  • Senior centers
  • Senior organizations and services
  • Support groups