Senior Living Residents Inspire Next Generation of Tech Innovators

Demand is soaring for innovative senior care technology, with the total market opportunity estimated to be $280 billion. However, as engineers and startups rush into the space, some are creating new offerings that do not consider the needs and wants of seniors themselves—take, for example, a fall sensor product that would have required users to wear the same unattractive shoes all the time.

A senior living community in California is helping address this problem, having recently teamed up with a university to match up-and-coming product developers with residents. By collaborating on product design, intergenerational teams of students and residents came up with offerings that should meet the specific needs of seniors. And, following a competition judged by residents themselves, one of the products was crowned “Best Device to Improve the Quality of Life of Seniors” earlier this month.

Posted by editor on Fri, 29 Jul 2016 15:07 | Permalink

How Senior Living Can Keep Price Tags Low and Service High

The need in senior living for a middle-income price point is growing, as the reality of the demographics coming down the pike is alarming and impossible to ignore.

By the year 2036, 40% of people over age 62 are projected to have assets of $25,000 or less, and 20% are expected to have $5,000 or less in assets, according to figures presented by Plante Moran Living Forward at the 2016 Senior Housing News Chicago Summit on July 14.

By 2040, the number of those age 85 and up is expected to triple to 14.6 million, meaning there will undoubtedly be a need for senior housing that’s more affordable for the middle-income population.

“We need to make sure we’re thinking far enough ahead to build the communities affordable for them,” Plante Moran Vice President Jamie Timoteo said during a discussion on the middle-income senior housing market.

Being prepared to successfully develop and operate middle-market senior housing is crucial, and this requires different planning techniques than the most prevalent private pay communities.

Posted by editor on Fri, 29 Jul 2016 15:07 | Permalink

Elderly Get Unnecessary End-of-Life Treatments

People dying naturally of old age often receive unnecessary end-of-life medical treatments in hospitals, a new global study finds.

The Australian-based research found that one-third of patients with advanced, irreversible chronic conditions were given treatments that didn't necessarily benefit them -- including admission to intensive care or chemotherapy -- in the last two weeks of their life. The study also revealed that one-quarter of older patients who had Do-Not-Resuscitate orders were still given cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).

People with serious conditions were subjected to invasive procedures, unnecessary scans and blood tests, intensive heart monitoring and other treatments that did little to alter their outcomes, sometimes against their wishes, the researchers found.

Posted by editor on Wed, 20 Jul 2016 11:07 | Permalink

Few Young Doctors Are Training To Care For U.S. Elderly

At Edgewood Summit retirement community in Charleston, W.Va., 93-year-old Mary Mullens is waxing eloquent about her geriatrician, Dr. Todd Goldberg.

"He's sure got a lot to do," she says, "and does it so well."

West Virginia has the third oldest population in the nation, right behind Maine and Florida. But Goldberg is one of only 36 geriatricians in the state.

"With the growing elderly population across America and West Virginia, obviously we need healthcare providers," says Goldberg.

That includes geriatricians — physicians who specialize in the treatment of adults age 65 and older — as well as nurses, physical therapists, and psychologists who know how to care for this population.


Posted by editor on Wed, 20 Jul 2016 11:07 | Permalink

What Can't Medical Marijuana Do?

Recent studies indicate that the drug is making seniors healthier and helping stem the tide of the opioid epidemic—all while making their health care cheaper.

Things aren’t going so hot in the public-health war against the opioid epidemic that is sweeping America right now. Deaths from opioid overdoses hit an all-time high in 2014, the latest year for which there’s official data, and there isn’t much reason to believe the epidemic will be over any time soon. New legislation provides for a range of policy options for addressing the epidemic, but all will likely be woefully underfunded. States hit the hardest by the crisis are passing their own legislation to combat it, but the different elements of health-care regulation, criminal law, and public-health law that are involved make the scope of the problem difficult to deal with. All the while, groups like elderly Americans are becoming increasingly vulnerable to opioid addiction.

Posted by editor on Wed, 20 Jul 2016 11:07 | Permalink

6 Ways to Nudge Congress to Help Older Americans

How advocates can help unstall a law that serves millions daily

On Jan. 6, the 114th Congress convened with a major difference from the last one: Republicans regained control of the Senate and increased their majority in the House of Representatives, making this the first time in eight years that both Houses are controlled by Republicans.

A new Congress means a new start to the legislative process for the hundreds of bills that were not acted on in the last Congress — characterized as the least productive in recent history. One of those bills is the Older Americans Act. Despite vigorous efforts in the Senate led by Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), a bill to renew the act was not voted on in 2014. As a result, the process now must start from scratch in both houses of Congress.

As I recently wrote on Next Avenue, the Older Americans Act has provided millions of adults with much-needed services, including nutrition programs, caregiving, transportation, legal services and elder abuse prevention. Currently, one in five older adults — 11 million people — receive services from an Older Americans Act program. And yet, reauthorization has been stuck.

Posted by editor on Wed, 20 Jul 2016 11:07 | Permalink

Talking to Younger Men About Growing Old

An electronic display on the treadmill in my local gym reminds me I’m not only running on the machine, but out of time. Its graph comparing changes in the runner’s heart rate to that of peers goes no further than age 70. I’m 85, and find it ominous that the machine presumes that anyone that old shouldn’t be on the thing.

Reminders that I’m now officially one of the old-old appear with greater frequency. Some are subtle, like the treadmill display; others are more jarring, like my daughter’s approaching 60th birthday. Most reminders are well-meaning: a young woman offering her seat on a bus, an airport employee hurrying over with a wheelchair, happily telling me I won’t have to walk to the gate or stand in line. I graciously decline their kindness, struggling not to protest, “But, I’m a competitive runner!” That I feel robust doesn’t matter; the man I see and the man they see are two very different people.

Posted by editor on Wed, 20 Jul 2016 11:07 | Permalink

What to Know About Health By 50, 60, 70

What to Know About Caregiving By 50, 60 and 70; What to Know About Money and Work By 50, 60 and 70 and What to Know About Living By 50, 60 and 70.

Posted by editor on Wed, 20 Jul 2016 11:07 | Permalink

FDA wants food industry to help reduce salt consumption

In a move of critical importance to senior citizens, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration yesterday issued draft guidance for public comment that provides practical, voluntary sodium reduction targets for the food industry. Seniors are among those most impacted because of the association of sodium with heart and stroke problems, and because they frequently eat out.

The problems highlighted by the FDA include:

The majority of sodium consumed comes from processed and prepared foods, not the salt shaker. This makes it difficult for all of us to control how much sodium we consume.

 Some companies have reduced sodium in certain foods, but many foods continue to contribute to high sodium intake, especially processed and prepared foods, including foods eaten away from home.

Posted by editor on Wed, 20 Jul 2016 11:07 | Permalink

Anti-Aging Secrets From 7 Centenarians

You may have heard of Ida Keeling, the 101-year-old New Yorker who recently set a new world record in the 100-meter dash for her age group. While reading or watching a news story about her, you may have also questioned your life choices a little bit. That's a typical reaction, considering there are plenty of folks close to half her age who can't exert much energy – let alone sprint around a track at record speed – without canes and oxygen tanks. You think: How is this possible? What are the necessary ingredients for maintaining such impressive health deep into old age?

Posted by editor on Mon, 11 Jul 2016 14:07 | Permalink