Archive for the ‘Resources’ Category

Where are all the Eldercare Services?

Thursday, October 21st, 2010

I just came back from an elder abuse prevention meeting. There was a guest there whose dad was a victim of elder abuse recently. She was very upset that when she and her sister were looking for elder abuse resources, she couldn’t find them anywhere. Her dad has since died. This abusive situation (by a hired caregiver) created so much stress in their relationship that they didn’t get along the last year of his life. She hasn’t had a full nights sleep since. She’s hurt, mad and sad.

This renewed my passion for bringing all the services for eldercare services to ONE PLACE – This is why I created www.AgingPro.com.  My aim is that no other family member would lose sleep over edler abuse or be so hurt that they couldn’t find the best care for their loved one.

AgingPro.com brings all the eldercare services to one place, online. There are good people out there doing good work – it’s just very hard to find them!

We need support, marketing, and funding to make AgingPro.com truly the Google of Eldercare.

Spread the word – everything you need for eldercare is in one place. Come check us out!

Thank you for your support.

Spinal-Fluid Test Is Found to Predict Alzheimer’s

Tuesday, August 10th, 2010

Alzheimer’s Disease promising new research: The presence of three specific proteins in spinal fluid may accurately predict Alzheimer’s disease (AD) prior to the onset of any symptoms:  Read the whole story here or here

This is NOT a cure – this is a way to predict if you might get or have AD.

The question then is: What do you do if the test reveals you have AD or may get it? There are some medications out now that MAY slow the progression of the disease, but much more research is needed in this area. Some people will not want to know if they may get AD.

Good brain health through physical exercise, brain exercises, and healthy diet may be beneficial in reducing the risk of Alzheimer’s and vascular dementia.

Take good care!

Help with Medicare Part D, prescriptions, questions

Tuesday, March 16th, 2010

“My Medicare Matters” is an educational and outreach initiative that helps people with Medicare and their families better understand Medicare.  This campaign is sponsored by the National Council on Aging (NCOA) and supported by AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals, LP.

The “My Medicare Matters” national campaign has three goals:

  1. To maximize the number of people who are “informed consumers” of Medicare, including Part D and who are able to take appropriate next steps
  2. To maximize the number of eligible people who enroll in the Medicare Savings Program, Part D Extra Help/Low-Income Subsidy (LIS)
  3. Maximize access to related benefits for elders of modest financial means

For more information about My Medicare Matters, please visit www.MyMedicareMatters.org for consumers and www.MyMedicareCommunity.org for professionals and volunteers who work with people with Medicare.

To contact Medicare directly, call 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227)

Reduced Social Activity Linked to More Rapid Loss of Motor Function in Older Adults

Tuesday, June 23rd, 2009

Loss of muscle strength, speed and dexterity is a common consequence of aging, and a well-established risk factor for death, disability and dementia. Yet little is known about how and why motor decline occurs when it is not a symptom of disease.  Motor functions enable us to act and move.

Researchers at Rush University Medical Center have found that, among the elderly, less frequent participation in social activities is associated with a more rapid decline in motor function.   “It’s not just running around the track that is good for you,” said Dr. Aron Buchman.  “Our findings suggest that engaging in social activities may also be protective against loss of motor abilities.”

These results raise the possibility that motor function decline can be slowed by encouraging people to engage in social activities, such as doing volunteer work, visiting friends or relatives, or attending church or sporting events. 


“There is gathering evidence that physical activity is only one component of an active and healthy lifestyle. Studies have shown, for example, that increased cognitive and social activities in the elderly are associated with increased survival and a decreased risk of dementia,” Buchman said. “Our study extends these findings, showing that social activity late in life is closely linked with healthy motor function.”

See full story Rush.edu

Firm Pushed Drug It Knew Didn’t Work

Tuesday, June 16th, 2009

AP
Health insurers and states are suing Eli Lilly Co. over the way it marketed Zyprexa, an antipsychotic medication. Zyprexa was the firm’s best-selling drug in 2008.
(June 15) — Phamaceutical giant Eli Lilly & Co. urged doctors to prescribe its drug Zyprexa for elderly patients with dementia, even though the company had evidence the drug didn’t work in such cases, Bloomberg News reported.
The Bloomberg story is based on company documents that were unsealed in insurer lawsuits against the company over Zyprexa. Lilly began promoting the drug for use in elderly patients with Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia in 1999, even though it had been approved only as a treatment for schizophrenia. The company also tried to get doctors to prescribe Zyprexa to elderly people struggling with moodiness and insomnia.

It’s unclear whether Lilly accepted the offer, Bloomberg said. It noted that a rival pharmacy company, Express Scripts Inc., also sent out letters touting Zyprexa. CVS and Express Scripts are not defendants in the lawsuit.
Zyprexa was Lilly’s best-selling drug in the U.S. in 2008, bringing in $14.6 billion. The documents were released as part of a $6.8 billion lawsuit over Lilly’s marketing of Zyprexa. Twelve states are also suing Lilly over the same matter.

AgingPro.com Participates in Aging Sensitivity Training

Wednesday, June 10th, 2009

LONG BEACH, Calif., June 8 /PRNewswire/ — In an effort to better serve Long Beach-area seniors, staff members from local legislators’ offices and community agencies recently participated in an interactive senior sensitivity training program sponsored by SCAN Health Plan. The award-winning Trading Ages(TM) program is a workshop that provides participants the opportunity to literally “walk in the shoes of a senior” through a series of hands-on exercises and sensory perception education.

“Through this program SCAN provides an invaluable opportunity to feel, see and hear the common physical and emotional challenges that are a part of the aging process,” said Long Beach Assembly Member Bonnie Lowenthal, who co-hosted the training with SCAN. “As society ages it is incumbent upon all of us to better understand what it’s like to grow older and raise our level of appreciation for seniors and what they confront.”

In addition to Assembly Member Lowenthal’s staff members, among those taking part in the day’s workshop were staff from the Long Beach City Council Offices, Long Beach Police Department, Long Beach Senior Advisory Commission, Los Angeles District Attorneys Office’s Victim Assistance Program, Santa Monica Police Department Elder Abuse Unit, and Long Beach-based Pathways Volunteer Hospice as well as Agingpro.com, an online eldercare resource.

Read entire press release   http://tiny.cc/N5R3V

Dementia with Lewy Bodies Often Missed

Tuesday, June 2nd, 2009

(Source: Alzheimer Research Forum) – Perhaps the biggest, and quintessential, representative of a spectrum neurodegenerative disease is dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB). By some counts, this disease is the second most common form of dementia after Alzheimer’s disease (AD), with patient estimates ranging between one and two million in the U.S.

DLB is a double whammy of a disease. People with DLB have behavioral and memory problems as in AD and, to a varying extent, also suffer motor symptoms, as seen in Parkinson’s disease (PD). However, the cognitive symptoms of people with DLB tend to fluctuate frequently, their motor symptoms are milder, and they often have vivid visual hallucinations and particular visuospatial (visual perception of spatial relationships among objects) deficits. In short, DLB is neither AD nor PD, and yet defining its distinct identity has been a challenge.

This is Part 3 of a nine-part series.

Go to full story: alzforum.org

New U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Supports Long Term Care Workers

Wednesday, May 20th, 2009

The new U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius, wrote a letter to the editor of the Washington Post regarding the article: “Taking Care of Our Caregivers”. Sebelius explained that the Department of Health and Human Services is deeply concerned about the needs of long-term care workers and maintaining an adequate and high-quality workforce. To view: http://tiny.cc/U4y9L

Weight Loss and Alzheimer’s

Tuesday, May 19th, 2009

Researchers have discovered more evidence that rapid weight loss in old age may be an early warning sign of dementia. http://tiny.cc/4yV4Y

Watch the “Alzheimer’s Project”

Tuesday, May 12th, 2009

Beginning Sunday, May 10, 2009, tune into HBO’s “THE ALZHEIMER’S PROJECT,” a groundbreaking documentary series that will change the way America thinks about Alzheimer’s disease. This four-part film, airing over three nights exclusively on HBO, gives the public a rare inside look at the faces behind the disease and the forces leading us to find a cure. With Maria Shriver.


Need Help Paying for Medicine? Check to See if You Could Receive Free Medicine!

Monday, May 11th, 2009

The Partnership for Prescription Assistance may be able to help you pay for your medications.   If you don’t have prescription coverage and can’t afford your medicines, call   888-477-2699  or go to www.pparx.org.  You could get them free or nearly free.

Swine Flu Prevention Tips

Wednesday, April 29th, 2009

6 Steps to Preventing the Flu: Good Health Habits Can Stop Germs

1.  Avoid close contact.

Avoid close contact with people who are sick. When you are sick, keep your distance from others to protect them from getting sick too.

2.  Stay home when you are sick.
If possible, stay home from work, school, and errands when you are sick. You will help prevent others from catching your illness.

3. Cover your mouth and nose.
Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing. It may prevent those around you from getting sick.

4.  Clean your hands.

Washing your hands often will help protect you from germs.

5. Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.
Germs are often spread when a person touches something that is contaminated with germs and then touches his or her eyes, nose, or mouth.

6.Practice other good health habits.
Get plenty of sleep, be physically active, manage your stress, drink plenty of fluids, and eat nutritious food.

One-stop access to U.S. Government information on swine, avian and pandemic flu:
http://www.pandemicflu.gov.

Resources to Help with Medicare, Nursing Home and Hospital care

Tuesday, March 10th, 2009

– “Ask Medicare” offers information about Medicare, www.medicare.gov/caregivers

– “Nursing Home Compare” is an online way to get insight into every nursing home certified by Medicare and Medicaid. You can compare facilities by a five star “quality of care” rating system. Go to www.medicare.gov/NHCompare

– “Hospital Compare”
sheds light on quality of care at hospitals nationwide, including a mortality measure for pneumonia and patient satisfaction information.  www.hospitalcompare.hhs.gov

–  The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) has issued easy to follow guides on other health related topics, including “Planning for Your Discharge” (a checklist for patients and caregivers preparing to leave a hospital) and “Getting Medical Care and Prescription Drugs in a Disaster or Emergency Area.” Details at 800-633-4227 or www.cms.hhs.gov.

Caregiver Resources

Friday, March 6th, 2009

Leeza’s Place, for Caregivers

Developed in response to the challenges Leeza Gibbons and her family encountered while seeking specific and needed support, Leeza’s Place is a potent source of information, strength and purpose. Chances are there’s a Leeza’s Place nestled within your own community. Leeza’s Place provides a multifaceted reprieve, for both caregivers and the recently diagnosed, that integrates educational programs, connective social activities, emotional support, and intergenerational programs designed to help you navigate through your community’s continuum of care. Leeza’s Place was designed to ensure that others experiencing what the Gibbons family encountered would have access to new, supportive settings created for the purpose of educating, empowering and energizing.  Find the Leeza’s Place nearest you:  http://www.leezasplace.org

Money-Saving Tips for Family Caregivers

Monday, February 23rd, 2009

Money-Saving Tips for Family Caregivers

Given the current economic times, all of us are rethinking the way we spend money. Sometimes finding additional ways to cut back on spending is difficult. Here are some simple money saving ideas that anyone can use to save money each and every day.

Save on Food Bills

* Clip coupons. Some grocery stores even offer double or triple off on coupons.

* Buy generic. Store brands often cost much less than brand names, and often, the products are almost identical.

* Apply for and use a store’s free savings card, sometimes called “club cards”. Stores offer many items on sale if you use your card.

* Check out what’s on sale. Additionally, some stores mark down items if they are approaching their “use by” date.

* Make a list of items on sale and plan your shopping before going to the store.

* Don’t shop for groceries when you’re hungry. Your empty stomach won’t care how much something costs, it wants to eat now!

* Eat fewer meals out. When you do go out, take advantage of early-bird specials or split a meal with someone you love. Pack a lunch for work.

*  Pay attention at the register. Sometimes items will ring up at the wrong price. If you notice a price difference, bring it to the cashier’s attention.

*  Stick to a budget. Instead of spending whatever you want, try to set a monthly limit on food expenditures. Keep receipts and tally them up during the month. You might be surprised how quickly small things add up.

Save on Electricity Bills

* Check to make sure your house is properly insulated.

* Make sure you heating and cooling systems are working properly, and change or clean the air filters monthly.

* Use energy efficient light bulbs

* Turn off all electronics when they aren’t in use, including computers, televisions, monitors, cell phone chargers, and extra refrigerators.

* Turn the lights off in rooms you aren’t in.

*  If you use some type of life-saving device that runs on electricity, (such as an oxygen machine) contact your utility company for a special reduction in your bill.

*  If you qualify as a low income household, check with your utility company for programs that can assist you.

Save on Household Expenses

* Are there any services you pay for that you don’t really use or need such as: premium television services, newspapers or magazines, lawn services, Internet, or phone?

* Use public resources for entertainment, such as the library. Libraries have movie and television show collections, in addition to wonderful books that you can borrow.  Remember to return the items on time!

* Do an Internet search for “free things to do in (your city).”  You might be surprised at how much fun you can have for free!

* Use cash. People tend to spend less when they use cash instead of a credit card.

* Buy in bulk, if it will save you money and if you have room to store the items.

Save on Medication Costs

*  Research medication assistance programs to see if you qualify for reduced cost or free medications. Try websites such as Partnership for Prescription Assistance at www.pparx.org.

*  Ask the doctor for prescription samples, especially on new drugs.

*  Research the best prices. Some mail order or online pharmacies offer better prices than local chain stores. Sometimes buying a 90-day supply costs less than a 30-day supply.

*  Ask your pharmacist if there are lower-cost alternatives, or more cost effective doses for the medications you take. Check with your doctor about any changes.

Save on Medical Costs

*  Prevention will save you money in the long run. Maintain your health by eating a balanced diet, getting regular exercise and getting all age-appropriate annual exams.

*  Negotiate. If you don’t have insurance, often doctors or hospitals will offer you a “cash” price.

* Check your medical bills carefully. Bring all discrepancies to the billing party right away.

Save on Automobile Expenses

*  You or your insurance agent can review your insurance policy to look for possible savings. Sometimes it makes sense to raise a deductible, sign up for the safe driver program or get multiple car discounts.

* Maintain your car. Get oil changes every 5,000 miles and check air pressure in your tires. Watch for coupons for oil changes or other services.

* Keep your eyes open for the best gas prices in town. Beware of hidden charges, such as paying extra to use a debit card.

* If you don’t use a vehicle, you can save on registration if you file a “non-use” form with the DMV.

If you have other money saving tips, please let us know so we can share them with others!

Government Tools to Help Navigate Medicare, Medicaid, Nursing Homes and Hospitals

Wednesday, February 18th, 2009

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS), an agency of the United States Department of Health and Human Services, has several online resources aimed at helping consumers navigate Medicare, hospitals and nursing homes. The resources are listed below.

*  “Ask Medicare” offers information about Medicare, www.medicare.gov/caregivers

*  “Nursing Home Compare” is an online way to get insight into every nursing home certified by Medicare and Medicaid. You can compare facilities by a five star “quality of care” rating system. Go to www.medicare.gov/NHCompare

*  “Hospital Compare” sheds light on quality of care at hospitals nationwide, including mortality measure for pneumonia and patient satisfaction information.  www.hospitalcompare.hhs.gov

*  CMS has issued easy to follow guides on other health related topics, including “Planning for Your Discharge” (a checklist for patients and caregivers preparing to leave a hospital) and “Getting Medical Care and Prescription Drugs in a Disaster or Emergency Area.” Details at 800-633-4227 or www.cms.hhs.gov

Create Your Living Will so Your Long Term Care Wishes are Honored!

Wednesday, January 14th, 2009

Here’s my pitch for everyone to have their own power of attorney for health care and living will. If and when something happens and you’re not able to verbalize what treatment you want, it is important to have this document!  It’s the only way to assure you will get just what you want. Do it today!

Here is one resource:

The Five Wishes document helps you express how you want to be treated if you are seriously ill and unable to speak for yourself.  It is unique among all other living will and health agent forms because it looks to all of a person’s needs: medical, personal, emotional and spiritual. Five Wishes also encourages discussing your wishes with your family and physician. Get yours at www.agingwithdignity.org. Order for $5 each.