Monthly Archives: February, 2019

Hamilton Relay seeks nominations for 2019 Better Hearing and Speech Month Recognition Award

hamilton relay

Download the questionnaire to nominate an individual, click here.

 

“The Dangers of Over-the-Counter Pain Relievers” – AARP

“Some can be deadly. Some hit older adults harder than others. How to know how much is too much”

Various pills bottles and heap of drugs

by Betsy Stephens

“If the good news is that over-the-counter pain killers such as acetaminophen, ibuprofen and naproxen won’t put you at risk for addiction issues like prescription opioids or narcotics can, the less good news is that no pain pill comes without the potential for problems, says Nitin Sekhri, medical director of pain management at Westchester Medical Center in Valhalla, N.Y.

“Acetaminophen, the active ingredient in Tylenol, is considered the safest option by many, and yet, Sekhri notes, it’s still to blame for about 50 percent of acute liver failures in the U.S. Acetaminophen also is the leading reason behind calls to poison control and to blame for more than 50,000 emergency room visits a year.

“Often problems arise from people not realizing they’ve taken as much acetaminophen as they have. The over-the-counter painkiller isn’t just in Tylenol: It shows up in remedies meant to fight allergies, colds, flu, coughs and sleeplessness. It’s also an ingredient in prescription painkillers such as Vicodin and Percocet.”

Read this article in its entirety at AARP, click here.

 

OPINION: “‘Grandmother effect’ helps explain human longevity”

grandma

by Haider Warraich

Not long after our first child was born, my wife and I contacted my mother in Pakistan to see if she could come and stay with us for a while in Durham, N.C., where I was training to be a cardiologist. We were overjoyed when she agreed. But when she arrived at the airport counter to collect her boarding pass, she learned that her valid visa had been unceremoniously cancelled without any reason given.

“That she couldn’t come see her only granddaughter (and help out her parents) was devastating for all of us. But as two recent articles published in Current Biology show, the presence of grandmothers goes far beyond sentimental implications: They may be responsible for the success of the human species.

“First, some background:

“Evolutionary biologists have long been struck by two unique features of humans. The first is that we enjoy some of the longest life spans in the animal kingdom. In just the past 200 years, there has been an unprecedented increase in how long we live, not just in the richest countries but also in the poorest. We have moved so far away from our hunter-gatherer ancestors that their life spans are more similar to those of apes and chimpanzees than to modern human beings.

“This feature is coupled with another.”

Click here to continue reading this STATNews article in its entirety. 

Technology and home health care: a match?

We’ve been reading so much about advantages that aging persons can accrue with the introduction of emerging technology, we decided to list some of the articles.

Aging In Place Technology Watch shares this in today’s newsletter: “… it’s good to see that Envoy (concierge service for independent living), Kindly Care (home care agency), Caremerge (home care platform), and Seniorlink (care coordination) are in their same businesses from 2016 – and others from the period like Envoy and CareLinx received additional investment and moved forward.

aging technology

“New Tech Options are Helping Seniors Age in Place – Systems that offer reminders and assistance are creating ‘monitored independence.’”Scientific American

“Smart Home Technology Becomes a Must-Have in Senior Living”Senior Housing News

A 2016 article | “Home care robotics market set to quadruple – The robots are finally coming home, but the undisputed category leader isn’t what you had in mind.”ZD Net

“A Glimpse at Healthcare Technology May Give Signs to the Future of Home Care”HomeCareDaily

“Home Instead Inc. — the international franchise company behind the Home Instead Senior Care network — is joining forces with senior-friendly tablet startup GrandPad in an attempt to reduce client loneliness and improve connectivity.”Home Health Care News

“Where the Home Health Aide Shortage Will Hit Hardest by 2025” Home Health Care News

“African-American women with HIV often overlooked, under-supported” – The Conversation

black women“From left to right: Toya Tolson, Shawnte’ Spriggs, Sophia Harrison, Marcella Wright and Deborah Dyson. These women are aging with HIV, sometimes with other diseases and always with other challenges. Aamir Khuller, CC BY-NC-SA”

by Thurka Sangaramoorthy

“The face of HIV in the United States has long been white gay men, even though the epidemic has had a devastating and disproportionate impact on African-American communities.

“This is especially true among women; 60 percent of newly diagnosed cases of HIV in women in 2017 were African-American. Yet, African-American women’s voices are notoriously absent from the national discourse on HIV.

“Largely invisible to a fractured health care system, these women are often breadwinners and matriarchs whose families count on them for support and care.

“Treatments to help people who are HIV-positive manage their illness and survive into older age have improved greatly, yet the unique health needs of African-American women living and aging with HIV – estimated at about 140,000 – are often ignored.”

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

What does “successful aging” look like? Will boomers continue to be interested in senior centers and “villages?”

Two recent articles weigh in on topics that will have profound impact on services that may have to be modified as persons age.  These aging persons are not “their father’s” peers. It is a very different time and will continue to be.

successful aging“Salem residents, including baby boomers, exercised at the advanced fitness class at the Salem Community Life Center.” – SUZANNE KREITER/GLOBE STAFF

“What Is Successful Aging?” – (This nextavenue article is excerpted from the new book Better with Age: The Psychology of Successful Aging by Alan D. Castel PhD. Copyright  © 2019 by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved.)

“The phrase ‘successful aging’ has grown in popularity over the past few decades. At some point in life, people become concerned about aging and want to know what to expect, what to avoid and ways to adapt. New research has shown that important paradoxes exist regarding how we think about old age and how we actually age.

T”he term successful aging was made popular in 1987, when the scientists John Wallis Rowe and Robert Kahn published an influential book entitled Successful Aging. Rowe and Kahn stated that successful aging involved three main factors: (1) being free of disability or disease, (2) having high cognitive and physical abilities, and (3) interacting with others in meaningful ways.

“Extrinsic and Intrinsic Factors of Successful Aging

“Importantly, Rowe and Kahn acknowledged that successful aging involved both intrinsic genetic factors and extrinsic lifestyle factors. Extrinsic factors such as diet, exercise, personal habits and psychosocial aspects of aging are often underestimated if one takes the simplistic view that aging  is guided by genetics.” – Click here to continue reading this article.

This Boston Globe article, “Senior groups struggle to attract ‘forever young’ baby boomers” sheds new light on what the “boomers” think about traditional senior centers and “villages.”

“I have no interest,” responded one person in the article when asked to visit the local senior center.”

Lebanon County begins Veterans Court program

lebanon county veterans court

Exciting things are happening in Lebanon County; one of them is the establishment of a Veterans Court that began in January, 2019.

Lebanon County joins 20 other Pennsylvania Counties, including Berks and Lancaster Counties, with Veterans Treatment Court programs.

“With a goal of rehabilitating veterans and reducing the prison population to below 500, John Shott, The Honorable Judge John Tylwalk, and Director of Probation Sally Barry presented a $20,000 Veteran’s Court for start-up costs.

“To help make the Court sustainable, a $500 Administration fee will be paid by participants. Participants may receive House Arrest and avoid jail time. Incentives in the form of gift cards are one reward for successfully completing the program. Volunteer veterans are sought as mentors to help fellow veterans through the process. Training is provided. Judge Tylwalk will meet with each veteran.

“This 24-month proactive program is one more tool in the toolbox along with DUI Treatment Court, the Renaissance Crossroads Program, Day Reporting Center, and pretrial diversion components of the IP plan already in place. Participants will perform community service projects. Sanctions include writing essays, loss of privileges, demotion to a lower phase, additional fines, curfew restrictions, incarceration, and removal from the program. The presence of the VA Medical Center provides an extra layer of support that many other counties do not have. Starting with 10 participants, there is room to grow the program to 50 participants. A 90% completion/graduation rate is anticipated.” – Click on the above graphic to watch a December 2018 video explaining the Veterans Court process.

“Veterans Courts assist veterans charged with crimes who are struggling with addiction, mental illness or co-occurring disorders and come in contact with the criminal justice system.

“Utilizing the successful drug court model, participants come before judges on a regular basis, receive support and guidance from veteran mentors, are supervised by specialized probation officers and receive treatment and support from the Veterans Administration to address underlying problems often caused by post-traumatic stress disorders. Pennsylvania’s first veterans court opened in Lackawanna County in November 2009. With more than 800,000 veterans, Pennsylvania has the fourth largest population of veterans in the country.” – Source: The Unified JUDICIAL SYSTEM of  PENNSYLVANIA Website

Click here to read a VFW Magazine article about Veterans Courts: “Ten Years of Second Chances | A decade ago, officials at a New York court were stunned at how veterans charged with non-violent crimes responded to an offer of help”

Ten-Years-of-Second-Chances “Dave Stroman, a life member of VFW Post 7397 in Lenexa, Kan., speaks during Garrett Cleek’s graduation from the Johnson County (Kan.) Veterans Treatment Court in October 2017. Stroman, a Vietnam War veteran, serves as a mentor to Cleek, an Afghanistan War veteran and fellow Post member, as well as other veterans in the program. Photo by Beth Lipoff.” – VFW Magazine

Click here to read a December, 2018 Lebanon Daily News article about the establishment of the Veterans Court.

 

OPINION | “Seema Verma: Americans have the right to know their health care and hospital costs” – STATNews

hospital chargesADOBE

by Seema Varma. Seema Verma currently serves as Administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).

Americans are prolific shoppers, constantly on the lookout for the best price for top-quality products and services. If you are searching for a new television, it’s easy to find prices and statistics transparently and prominently displayed at just about every store.

“Yet when it comes to maintaining our health, very few of us ever know price or quality before receiving a health care service. This is true whether it’s a simple visit to the doctor, a cancer screening, or a knee replacement.

“One reason health care costs continue to skyrocket is that the prices and quality of care are largely hidden from patients. That means health care providers don’t compete on cost or quality.”

Click here to read Ms. Varma’s column in its entirety at STATNews.

Lebanon VA Medical Center announces the first “Building the Bridge” event | other dates and venues announced, too.

VA building the bridge

The first session of the Building the Bridge Series is scheduled for March 8, 2019.  Enrollment will be available and onsite throughout the event.  This event will be held at the U.S. Army Heritage Education Center (Carlisle PA), where we look forward to collaborating with key stakeholders from the Veteran community pertaining to supports and resources in Cumberland, Dauphin and Perry Counties.

This year’s topics include:

  • Transition from Uniformed Services to Civilian Life: The common challenges in the transition process for both the Veteran and the family.
  • Substance Use & Abuse: Identifying when someone is using drugs &/or alcohol to cope, how to respond and where to turn for help.
  • Suicide Prevention: When warning signs of suicide begin to emerge & how family can help.  Discussion pertaining to supports & local initiatives.
  • Serving the Whole Veteran from a Wrap Around Perspective: Connecting Veterans before, during and after VA care with community partnerships.

Please join us for education, collaborative discussion and round-table sessions to further develop, strengthen and sustain working relationships.

Registration: https://08mar19cmhs.eventbrite.com

Disability impacts ALL of US.

Click here | To see a snapshot of disability in Pennsylvania

persons with a disability

61 million adults in the United States live with a disability
  • 26 percent (one in 4) of adults in the United States have some type of disability.
  • The percentage of people living with disabilities is highest in the South.
Percentage of adults with functional disability types:
  • 13.7 percent of people with a disability have a mobility disability with serious difficulty walking or climbing stairs.
  • 10.8 percent of people with a disability have a cognition disability with serious difficulty concentrating, remembering or making decisions.
  • 6.8 percent of people with a disability have an independent living disability with difficulty doing errands alone.
  • 5.9 percent of people with a disability are deaf or have serious difficulty hearing
  • 4.6 percent of people with a disability have a vision disability with blindness or serious difficulty seeing even when wearing glasses.
  • 3.6 percent of people with a disability have a self-care disability with difficulty dressing or bathing.
Disability and communities.

Disability is especially common in these groups, older adults, women and minorites.

  • 2 in 5 adults age 65 years and older have a disability
  • 1 in 4 women have a disability.
  • 2 in 5 non-Hispanic American Indians/ Alaska Natives have a disability.
Disability and health.

Adults living with disabilities are more likely to be obese, smoke, have heart disease and diabetes:

  • 38.2 percent of adults with a disability are obese while 26.2 percent of adults without a disability are obese.
  • 28.2 percent of adults with a disability smoke while 13.4 percent of adults without a disability smoke.
  • 11.5 percent of adults with a disability have heart disease while 3.8 percent of adults without a disability have heart disease.
  • 16.3 percent of adults with a disability have diabetes while 7.2 percent of adults with a disability have diabetes.
Disability and Health Care Access

Health care access barriers for working-age adults include

  • 1 in 3 adults with disabilities 18 to 44 years do not have a usual health care provider
  • 1 in 3 adults with disabilities 18 to 44 years have an unmet health care need because of cost in the past year
  • 1 in 4 adults with disabilities 45 to 64 years did not have a routine check-up in the past year
Making a difference.

Public health is for all of us.

Join CDC and its partners as we work together to improve the health of people living with disabilities.
CDC and its partners work together to improve the lives of people with disabilities by:

  • Promoting healthy living,
  • Monitoring public health data
  • Researching and reducing health disparities
  • Building inclusive health program
  • Improving access to health care.

Brought to you by the National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Contact us: disabilityandhealthbranch@cdc.gov

Twitter: @cdc_ncbddd

References

  1. Okoro CA, Hollis ND, Cyrus AC, Griffin-Blake S.  Prevalence of Disabilities and Health Care Access by Disability Status and Type Among Adults — United States, 2016.  MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2018;67:882–887. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15585/mmwr.mm6732a3External.
  2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Disability and Health Data System (DHDS) [Internet]. [updated 2018 May 24; cited 2018 August 27]. Available from: http://dhds.cdc.gov