NWPF

News ArchivesRead News

Season for Caring: Man with Parkinson's disease needs more nursing assistance

Tuesday December 22, 2009

Corrie MacLaggan

Statesman.com - Recently, when Martin Morales was shifting himself from his scooter to his bed, he fell to the floor. Morales, 78, who lives alone and is unable to walk or talk because of Parkinson's disease, was at his apartment by himself.

A woman who provides attendant care services to him through a state program later found him, and he was fine. But his caseworker at Family Eldercare, Susan Hernandez, said she worries about what might happen next time.

That's why, she says, Morales needs attendant care in the evenings in addition to the mornings.

Morales is part of the Austin American-Statesman's Season for Caring. The charitable campaign highlights 12 families and the nonprofit agencies that help them. Donations also help more than 1,000 of the agencies' other families each year.

Some of Morales' numerous family members — he's the great-grandfather of 32 — say they want to help him but that they can't afford some of the things that would improve his life: speech and physical therapy and a modified bed system that he can easily get into and out of.

Some of Morales' needs have been met. Home Therapy of Austin is doing a safety evaluation of his home. Speech pathologist Ginny Bader and assistive technology specialist Anne Buchta have evaluated him for an electronic communication device. He also will be receiving a scooter designed for people with Parkinson's.

Morales, a Weir native who never learned to read or write, once ran a South Congress Avenue restaurant called El Sombrero. To family members, he's an inspiration.

"He's the reason I'm proud to be a Morales," granddaughter Victoria Morales said.

Recent News

May 30 - Smell tests, biomarkers and colon biopsies: New approaches to early identification of Parkinson’s disease
May 29 - Woman battling Parkinson's disease to try out for 'American Ninja Warrior'
May 20 - Book Review: Aging in the Key of Humor
May 19 - Press Release: The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research Joins Multinational Critical Path for Parkinson's Consortium
May 19 - Congress reaches deal to overhaul chemical regulation
May 16 - Lifestyle: Why Parkinson's disease won't stop me rowing across the Pacific
May 16 - Many biomarkers for PD fail to inform on progression
May 10 - Parkinson's Cell Transplant Shows Good Reinnervation at 24 Years
May 9 - Parkinson's causes his body to freeze up. Only one thing gets him moving again.
May 7 - Growing art installation gathers stories of living with Parkinson's
May 5 - New technique can provide better cell transplants against Parkinson's disease
May 2 - What's Good For The Heart Is Good For The Brain
Apr 29 - Press Release: FDA approves first drug to treat hallucinations and delusions associated with Parkinson’s disease
Apr 28 - Dopamine-making neurons can be chemically controlled in animal model of Parkinson's
Apr 25 - Lifestyle: Dating with Disease
Apr 25 - Scientific breakthrough in fight against Parkinson's and Alzheimer's
Apr 20 - Breakthrough Parkinson's disease blood test
Apr 15 - Living with Parkinson's
Apr 12 - Tissue biomarker for dementia with Lewy bodies and Parkinson’s disease
Apr 11 - Yoga for Every Body: Experts say yoga can ease pain and improve mobility for people with neurologic conditions