Monthly Archives: June, 2015

Shane Burcaw comes to town to share his charm and wit.

burkow comb

Shane Burcaw, was the keynote speaker at the Brain Injury Association of Pennsylvania’s annual conference end-of-conference luncheon. “Shane took the audience on an intimately personal journey through the challenges he faces with muscular dystrophy. He spoke with the same candid style of his writing. He is an accomplished writer, speaker and motivator.” His talk focused on the “way he uses positivity to overcome adversity, and provides lessons that the audience can apply to their own lives.”

Shane’s biography from his Website, laughing at my nightmare, states that he “grew up in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, and graduated from Moravian College with an English degree. His bestselling memoir was shortlisted for the ALA Excellence in Nonfiction Award. He also writes as a freelancer for The Morning Call. His blog, (Laughing At My Nightmare) about the humor of living with Spinal Muscular Atrophy, has over half a million followers.

“In his free time he enjoys running people over in his wheelchair, hanging out with his brother and friends, and traveling. His favorite food is mashed potatoes, and one time when he was a kid he stole thirty popsicles from the school cafeteria because a friend told him it was allowed. The popsicles melted in his book bag, and he was sent to the principal’s office. A life of crime just didn’t suit him.”

Check out his facebook site, too. We exchanged “Hi’s” following his talk and a question and answer period as he was being besieged by conference participants who came by to get an autographed copy of his book, “laughing at my nightmare.”

It is great to have met you, Shane.

a bit delayed, but here’s the Department of Aging wrap-up for the week ending Friday, June 26, 2015

PA department of aging logo

Each week the Pennsylvania Department of Aging releases a Friday newsletter with information relevant to activities, issues and events for older Pennsylvanians and persons with disabilities across the Commonwealth.

Click here to read the June 26  newsletter.

Kevin Pearce wows conference audience today in Lancaster

comb

The Brain Injury Association of Pennsylvania’s annual conference is in full swing at the Marriott in Downtown Lancaster through tomorrow. This morning, the well-attended conference was thrilled to welcome Kevin Pearce to share his story about his path since suffering brain injury in a snowboarding accident.

Click here to be directed to the Love Your Brain Foundation.

“To Treat Me, You Have to Know Who I Am”

New York City Health and Hospitals launched a mandatory employee training program that will improve access to healthcare for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) individuals and help to reduce health disparities related to sexual orientation and gender identification. The training will teach staff to provide respectful, patient-centered and culturally competent healthcare services to thousands of LGBT New Yorkers who are served by the public hospitals, community health centers and nursing homes every year.

Find out more here.

Caring for older lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender adults

National Council on Aging’s “new tip sheet on engaging people with disabilities in Evidence-Based Programs”

According to the National Council on Aging, “A new Chronic Disease Self-Management Education (CDSME) Resource Center tip sheet provides helpful information and guidance about disability literacy, etiquette, accessibility, accommodations, and inclusion. This tip sheet is useful for anyone offering or wishing to offer evidence-based programs (EBPs) to adults with disabilities.” Click here or on the graphic below to download the entire report.

engaging

Millennials Outnumber Baby Boomers and Are Far More Diverse, Census Bureau Reports

Young Children Now Majority-Minority

Millennials, or America’s youth born between 1982 and 2000, now number 83.1 million and represent more than one quarter of the nation’s population. Their size exceeds that of the 75.4 million baby boomers, according to new U.S. Census Bureau estimates released today. Overall, millennials are more diverse than the generations that preceded them, with 44.2 percent being part of a minority race or ethnic group (that is, a group other than non-Hispanic, single-race white).

These latest population estimates examine changes among groups by age, sex, race and Hispanic origin nationally, as well as in all states and counties, between April 1, 2010, and July 1, 2014.

Even more diverse than millennials are the youngest Americans: those younger than 5 years old. In 2014, this group became majority-minority for the first time, with 50.2 percent being part of a minority race or ethnic group.

Reflecting these younger age groups, the population as a whole has become more racially and ethnically diverse in just the last decade, with the percentage minority climbing from 32.9 percent in 2004 to 37.9 percent in 2014.

Five states or equivalents were majority-minority: Hawaii (77.0 percent), the District of Columbia (64.2 percent), California (61.5 percent), New Mexico (61.1 percent) and Texas (56.5 percent). Among the remaining states, Nevada is the closest to crossing this threshold, with a population 48.5 percent minority. More than 11 percent (364) of the nation’s 3,142 counties were majority-minority in 2014. Five reached this milestone during the year beginning July 1, 2013: Russell, Ala.; Newton, Ga.; Eddy, N.M.; Brazoria, Texas; and Suffolk city, Va.

Other highlights from the estimates:

The 65-and-older population

  • The nation’s 65-and-older population grew from 44.7 million in 2013 to 46.2 million in 2014. This group, which now contains the oldest four years of the baby boom generation (born between 1946 and 1964), is 21.7 percent minority, less diverse than younger age groups.
  • Between 2010 and 2014, the only two counties to add more than 100,000 people 65 and older to their total populations were Los Angeles, Calif. (167,000) and Maricopa, Ariz. (103,000).
  • San Juan, Colo., had the highest rate of increase in the 65-and-older population of any county between 2010 and 2014 (70.9 percent). Two other Colorado counties (San Miguel and Douglas) were also in the top five.
  • Florida had the highest percentage of its population age 65 and older among states in 2014 (19.1 percent), followed by Maine (18.3 percent). Alaska had the lowest percentage (9.4 percent), followed by Utah (10.0 percent).
  • Sumter, Fla., was the nation’s only majority 65-and-older population county in 2014 (52.9 percent). Chattahoochee, Ga., had the lowest percentage of its population in this age group (4.1 percent).

Some states and counties become younger

·         In contrast to most states, five experienced a decline in median age between July 1, 2013, and July 1, 2014: North Dakota, Hawaii, Montana, Wyoming and Iowa.

  • Median age declined in 434 counties over the period, with McKenzie, N.D., leading the way (32.9 to 31.6).
  • Maine experienced the largest increase in median age among states, rising from 43.9 to 44.2 over the period.
  • St. Helena, La., experienced the largest rise in median age among counties or equivalents, climbing from 40.2 to 41.3.
  • There was a greater than 13-year difference between the state with the highest median age (Maine at 44.2) and that with the lowest (Utah at 30.5).
  • There was a more than 42-year difference between the county with the highest median age (Sumter, Fla., at 65.9) and that with the youngest (Madison, Idaho, at 23.1). There were 74 counties where the median age was greater than 50, and 57 counties where it was less than 30.

States with more males than females (and vice versa)

  • There were only 10 states where males made up a majority of the population in 2014. Alaska had the highest male percentage (52.6 percent), followed by North Dakota (51.3 percent).
  • The District of Columbia had the highest percentage of females of any state or equivalent (52.6 percent), followed by Delaware (51.6 percent).

Births versus deaths

  • All race and ethnic groups except single-race, non-Hispanic whites had more births than deaths between 2013 and 2014. This group had 61,841 more deaths than births.

Hispanics

  • The nation’s Hispanic population totaled 55.4 million as of July 1, 2014, up by 1.2 million, or 2.1 percent, since July 1, 2013.
  • California had the largest Hispanic population of any state in 2014 (15.0 million). However, Texas had the largest numeric increase within the Hispanic population since July 1, 2013 (228,000). New Mexico had the highest percentage of Hispanics at 47.7 percent.
  • Los Angeles had the largest Hispanic population of any county (4.9 million) in 2014 while Harris, Texas, had the largest numeric increase since 2013 (45,000). Starr — on the Mexican border in Texas — had the highest share of Hispanics (95.8 percent).

Blacks

·         The nation’s black or African-American population totaled 45.7 million as of July 1, 2014, up by 578,000, or 1.3 percent, since July 1, 2013.

·         New York had the largest black or African-American population of any state or equivalent in 2014 (3.8 million); Texas had the largest numeric increase since July 1, 2013 (88,000). The District of Columbia had the highest percentage of blacks (50.6 percent), followed by Mississippi (38.2 percent).

·         Cook County, Ill. (Chicago) had the largest black or African-American population of any county in 2014 (1.3 million), and Harris, Texas, had the largest numeric increase since 2013 (21,000). Holmes, Miss., was the county with the highest percentage of blacks or African-Americans in the nation (82.5 percent).

Asians

  • The nation’s Asian population totaled 20.3 million as of July 1, 2014, up by 631,000, or 3.2 percent, since July 1, 2013.
  • California had both the largest Asian population of any state (6.3 million) in July 2014 and the largest numeric increase of Asians since July 1, 2013 (162,000). Hawaii was the nation’s only majority-Asian state, with people of this group comprising 56.2 percent of the total population.
  • Los Angeles had the largest Asian population of any county (1.7 million) in 2014 and the largest numeric increase (29,000) since 2013. Honolulu and Kauai, both in Hawaii, were the nation’s only majority-Asian counties.

American Indians and Alaska Natives

  • The nation’s American Indian and Alaska Native population totaled 6.5 million as of July 1, 2014, up by 93,000, or 1.4 percent, since July 1, 2013.
  • California had the largest American Indian and Alaska Native population of any state in 2014 (1.1 million) and the largest numeric increase since 2013 (13,000). Alaska had the highest percentage (19.4 percent).
  • Los Angeles had the largest American Indian and Alaska Native population of any county in 2014 (235,000), and Maricopa, Ariz., the largest numeric increase (4,700) since 2013. Shannon, S.D. — on the Nebraska border and located entirely within the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation — had the highest percentage (93.4 percent).

Native Hawaiians and Other Pacific Islanders

  • The nation’s Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander population totaled 1.5 million as of July 1, 2014, up by 33,000, or 2.3 percent, since July 1, 2013.
  • Hawaii had the largest population of Native Hawaiians and Other Pacific Islanders of any state (370,000) in 2014 and the highest percentage (26.0 percent). California had the largest numeric increase since 2013 (7,000).
  • Honolulu had the largest population of Native Hawaiians and Other Pacific Islanders of any county (239,000) in 2014, and Hawaii County had the highest percentage (34.4 percent). Clark, Nev., had the largest numeric increase since 2013 (1,100).

Non-Hispanic white alone

  • The nation’s non-Hispanic white alone population totaled 197.9 million in 2014, up by 94,000, or 0.5 percent, since 2013.
  • California had the largest non-Hispanic white alone population of any state in 2014 (14.9 million). Texas had the largest numeric increase in this population group since 2013 (79,000). Maine had the highest percentage of the non-Hispanic white alone population (93.8 percent).
  • Los Angeles had the largest non-Hispanic white alone population of any county (2.7 million) in 2014. Maricopa, Ariz., had the largest numeric increase in this population since 2013 (23,000). Leslie, Ky., comprised the highest percentage (98.1 percent) of single-race non-Hispanic whites.

Unless otherwise specified, the statistics refer to the population who reported a race alone or in combination with one or more races. Censuses and surveys permit respondents to select more than one race; consequently, people may be one race or a combination of races. The detailed tables show statistics for the resident population by “race alone” and “race alone or in combination.” The sum of the populations for the five “race alone or in combination” groups adds to more than the total population because individuals may report more than one race. All references to age, race, and Hispanic origin characteristics of counties apply only to counties with a 2014 population of 10,000 or more. The federal government treats Hispanic origin and race as separate and distinct concepts. In surveys and censuses, separate questions are asked on Hispanic origin and race. The question on Hispanic origin asks respondents if they are of Hispanic, Latino, or Spanish origin.

Starting with the 2000 Census, the question on race asked respondents to report the race or races they consider themselves to be. Hispanics may be of any race. Responses of “some other race” from the 2010 Census are modified in these estimates. This results in differences between the population for specific race categories for the modified 2010 Census population versus those in the 2010 Census data.

“End-of-life care: no, we don’t all want ‘whatever it takes’ to prolong life” – The Conversation

Though this article is from an Australian perspective, the context is transportable.

“We all die eventually, of course, but these days it’s very hard for doctors and loved ones to let patients and relatives die without first doing ‘whatever it takes’ to try to keep them alive. That is, unless they’ve left clear instructions to the contrary.

“The overwhelming priority for doctors is to save life. In the last few decades, technologies have progressed so far and fast that doctors are able to embark on treatments that until recently did not exist, or were too risky to consider.

“The extra years of good health are wonderful. But everything comes at a price. While we and our loved ones can often be kept alive, this may involve burdensome treatment and awful outcomes.

“But while the default position of medicine is to prolong life, staying alive isn’t everyone’s number-one priority, as my soon-to-be published survey results reveal.”

end-of-life

Click here to read this article from The Conversation in its entirety.

Changing Hands: a different kind of recycling program

If you or others you know have a need for home medical equipment or assistive technology but have limited insurance coverage or financial resources, you may be able to get what you need through the Changing Hands program. Click on the graphic below to download the information sheet about the Changing Hands program.

changing hands

Department of Aging wrap-up for Friday, June 19, 2015

PA department of aging logo

Each week the Pennsylvania Department of Aging releases a Friday newsletter with information relevant to activities, issues and events for older Pennsylvanians and persons with disabilities across the Commonwealth.

Click here to read the June 19  newsletter.

One Person, One Action, One State United Against Elder Abuse

united against elder abuse

Central PA senior advocates joined state officials recently to mark World Elder Abuse Awareness Day in an event at the Capitol. Flanked by lawmakers in both parties, officials and advocates offered remarks about this serious and often under-reported problem.
In Pennsylvania, more than 20,800 cases of suspected abuse and neglect were reported to the Department of Aging’s older adults protective services program, which works with investigators from the state’s 52 local Area Agencies on Aging to protect older Pennsylvanians.
“Our commitment to create a strong network of dedicated community and government organizations that deliver vital services to our most vulnerable residents ensures that we are working to provide safer, more livable communities for all Pennsylvanians,” said Secretary of Aging Teresa Osborne.
Joining her, Secretary of Banking and Securities Robin Wiessmann spoke about outreach to financial professionals and the public to help them recognize and report financial fraud, and to be alert to signs of cognitive impairment and abuse. She added, “The Pennsylvania Department of Banking and Securities is committed to protecting seniors from financial abuse and exploitation.”
In addition to financial exploitation, elder abuse takes the form of caregiver neglect, self-neglect, physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional and verbal abuse. Anyone can report elder abuse by calling the 24-hour hotline at 1-800-490-8505, or by contacting their local Area Agency on Aging. Pennsylvania law protects those who report suspected abuse from retaliation and civil or criminal liability; all calls are free and confidential. For more information, click here.

If you’ve not yet reviewed the newly revised Pennsylvania Department of Aging Website; click here. It contains a number of vital information points, including a download link to the new Benefits & Rights For Older Pennsylvanians – This booklet is an easy-to-read guide that provides information about Aging Services available across the commonwealth.