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White House Conference on Aging Part 1: Finding Local Services

WhiteHouseConverenceThe White House Conference on Aging (WHCOA), held July 13, 2015, brought together 200 experts and advocates from around the country. These professionals and volunteers from many related fields were challenged to examine the problems and opportunities we, as a country with an enormous number of caregivers and aging boomers, face.

Read more on HealthCentral about the launch of a great new government website:

Find local resources for walk-in tubs:

Support a caregiver or jump start discussion in support groups with real stories - for bulk orders e-mail Carol: 


Hospital Compare Joins Nursing Home Compare As Consumer Tool

GlassesComputersmallerThe Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has recently developed a tool that compares hospitals in a way that is similar to their popular Nursing Home Compare. Aptly called Hospital Compare, the tool allows consumers to view hospital ratings that are based on data from the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems Survey (HCAHPS). HCAHPS measures patients’ perspectives of hospital care and has been in use since 2006.

Continue reading on HealthCentral about Hospital Compare:

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Purchase Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories – paperback or ebook

“I hold onto your book as a life preserver and am reading it slowly on purpose...I don't want it to end.”  Craig William Dayton, Film Composer


HealthCentral Twitter Chat Focuses on Health Costs

Most of us who have our own health issues or are caregivers to those who are ill are acutely aware of how insurance coverage can change from year to year. Just managing the yearly Medicare changes for our elders can be confusing, especially for the Medicare supplemental policies and for Medicare D, which is the prescription drug policy. However, many caregivers are still on their employer’s policies, or have enrolled in a policy through a state and federal market place.

Read more on HealthCentral about Twitter chat this Thursday:

Purchase Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories – paperback or ebook

“I hold onto your book as a life preserver and am reading it slowly on purpose...I don't want it to end.”  Craig William Dayton, Film Composer


Milken Institute: Cost of Aging in America

The Milken Institute School of Public Health at the George Washington University has published a piece called "The Cost of Aging in America," which explores the serious financial burdens faced by aging individuals, their loved ones, and industry professionals -- as well as steps our health care system might take to counteract this trend. I wanted to share this infographic with the readers of Minding Our Elders. Cost-of-Aging-IG-1.9.15

 


Parent Care: Should Adult Children Split the Cost?

The reality is that when it comes to assisted living, most families pay their own way. If the adult children have the resources, many times they will help out if their parents don't have enough income. This, of course, can cause issues within the extended family context, especially if some siblings are wealthier than others. How do families decide whether or not the children financially contribute to their parents' care, and if they do, who pays how much?

Read more on Agingcare about the cost of elder care:

Support a caregiver or jump start discussion in support groups with real stories - for bulk orders e-mail Carol:


Pilot Program Gives Medicare Hospice Patients More Options

When patients enter hospice care, they must be certified as terminally ill with six months or less to live. Hospice provides palliative care, otherwise known as comfort care. They focus on helping the patient enjoy the maximum quality of life possible under the circumstances. Palliative care is not meant to cure any disease. Recently, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced plans that should give people with terminal illness broader choices.

Read more on HealthCentral about the pilot program for Medicare:

Support a caregiver or jump start discussion in support groups with real stories - for bulk orders e-mail Carol:


Administration on Aging Programs Assist Caregivers Nationwide

Administration on Aging programs provide assistance for caregivers nationwide - See more at: http://www.healthcentral.com/alzheimers/c/62/153930/administration#sthash.p2PQUiaZ.dpuf

Nearly any family caregiver has felt isolated and alone at one time or another. For many, that feeling is chronic. Friends don’t understand the strain we are under. Some people get no support from their extended family or friends. Where can we turn when there seems to be nowhere to turn? Believe it or not, many resources are at your fingertips on the Administration on Aging website.

Read more on HealthCentral about how the Administration of Aging assists caregivers:

Support a caregiver or jump start discussion in support groups with real stories - for bulk orders e-mail Carol: 


Alzheimer’s Disease Does Not Diminish Pain Sensitivity

Many people with Alzheimer's disease have been administered less pain medication than peers with no dementia who suffer from similar painful diseases or injuries. Since people in the later stages of Alzheimer’s can’t communicate well other than by generally acting in an aggressive manner, they can’t self-report pain. Some professionals have, in the past, concluded that the neurodegeneration caused by the disease must lower the sensitivity to pain, so they administer less medication for pain relief. 
 

More Geriatricians Essential to Treat Boomer’s Addictions and Mental Health

According to The American Geriatrics Society, there is now approximately one geriatrician for every 2,600 people 75 and older nationwide. While not all elders need a geriatrician, many do. The physical illnesses that come with aging often have nuances that are not always understood by the family doctor. When the mental health issues that can accompany aging are factored in, the need for more geriatricians increases. A person with Alzheimer’s disease may have depression or other mental health issues in addition to his or her dementia, and most family physicians aren’t trained to properly diagnose these complicated cases.

Read more about how more geriatricians are essential to boomer health:

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Is Alzheimer’s disease the default diagnosis for confused elders?

Alzheimer's organizations  have worked diligently to raise public awareness of the disease. Their efforts are paying off handsomely. I’d challenge nearly anyone to find a friend or neighbor who hasn’t heard enough about Alzheimer’s disease to give some type of description of the symptoms. The downside of this awareness, however, is that even doctors can jump to possibly faulty conclusions when they see an elderly person showing signs of memory loss or significant confusion.

Read more about how Alzheimer's may have become the default diagnosis for confused elders:

Purchase Minding Our Elders: Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories – paperback or ebook

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