Toluca Lake Manor

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This Is Personal: I want to talk about my friend, colleague and sort of relative by marriage, Sid Melton. He has been a busy character actor for decades and now at the age of 93, thanks to guidance from The Motion Picture and Television Fund’s Community Care Team, he is being cared for in a magical place in Toluca Lake called Toluca Lake Manor. Mariana Romano, administrator of the Manor, is a lovely woman who is like a room mother to a small group of seniors who require assisted living. Located in a lovely neighborhood, Mariana’s home is a comfortable micro senior community. It is a homey residential care facility, and Sid (and the family) find it desirable with its smaller, less institutional setting. Mariana is truly nice and she cares about her people. In Sid’s case she was very accommodating. He needs special care and (and) Mariana welcomed his dog Boo to come live with him. Their goal is to help promote peace of mind for both residents and their families and it certainly worked for ours. Focused on individual specific needs, with outstanding and loving care, they allow residents to live their lives to their fullest. I call it Miracle Manor. Google “Toluca Lake Manor” for more info.

Community Care Team

A few of the life-embellishing members of the Motion Picture and Television Fund’s Community Care Team. From l, Nancy Ramirez, Dr. Saeed Humayun, Linda Healy and Doreen Delgado.

It’s heartening to learn that there are some new possibilities for senior members of the industry offered by The Motion Picture and Television Fund. The Community Care Team is a superb product of MPTF and is trying to address a full range of needs. Now a real need is for more members of the Community Care Team! I’m hoping funding allows this because the inclusive services they provide are almost too good to be true.

Confession. Since the closing of the hospital and long term care facilities at the Motion Picture Home, I was rattled, as were many seniors. This felt like our lifeline had been cut, the safety net pulled out from under us. We’ve paid into the Fund for our working lifetimes. Via donations and deductions from our salaries, we in the industry believed in the motto, “We take care of our own.” So …

Things change. And so does the manner of caring. The wonderful Community Care Team gives a new hope to this senior performer. I suggest that all concerned check the website at MPTF under senior care. Or, just call MPTF.

Let me tell you about some real members of the team. They guided my stepson Adam, who has helped his Uncle Sid manage his affairs for years, through the whole process. It was like winning the lottery.

Tiffany Amirian, a social worker who located the Toluca Lake Manor, set up the transition from a rehab facility. She kept in constant communication with us, providing advice, assistance in filling out forms, insuring Sid had what he needed “medically” as well as for his comfort. Lorna Kahn was Sid’s first social worker and she is now back on the case. Her patience helped the family immeasurably and continues be a blessing. Dr. Aarti Madan made periodic visits to the rehab to check on health and progress. She contacted Adam regularly to provide updates on Sid’s condition and consulted on changes and/or additions to his “meds,” physical therapy etc. Linda Healy is a nurse practitioner, she traded off with Dr. Madan visiting Sid at Sherman Oaks Health & Rehab to check on his health and progress and order meds, tests and the unexpected. She was very helpful with suggestions to help Sid progress and move forward in his recovery. And again: patience. Dr. Keith Kauhanen, at MPTF’s Toluca Lake Health Center, has been Sid’s general practitioner for years and was responsible for connecting us with the Community Care Team, which also included Dr. Saeed Humayun of the MPTF’s Elder Connection, who helped care for Sid at the rehab. All these skilled and special people had a great “bedside” manner. Time for cloning more and more teams.

We’ll care and… we’ll Talk.

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