Author Archive: berkslancasterlebanonlink

“The need is great and growing for accessible, affordable housing” | maybe this is one step toward satisfying that need?

malls to residencesShuttered stores dominate the interior of the Schuylkill Mall which has closed and been demolished in Frackville, Pennsylvania.

This article at Pennlive today, “Dead and dying malls of Pennsylvania, updated: More shopping centers are bleeding retailers.” prompted a revisited look at an idea that’s being floated across the nation.

What will become of these once-popular retail centers? Demolish them? Re-store them? Re-purpose them?

“The retail apocalypse has not been kind to malls. Credit Suisse recently studied the state of mall-based retail and predicted that that about one-fourth of the nation’s 1,100 shopping malls — or roughly 220 to 275 shopping centers — will close by 2022.”

The  above is the lead paragraph from this Forbes Magazine article: “Why Malls Should Add Residential To Their Repurposing Plans.”

Te idea that malls offer ideal solutions for affordable, accessible residences is one that has to be considered. Many malls already are on public transportation routes; they already have plenty of parking and they’re “walkable.”

This white paper by New York State Assemblyman Stephen Englebright points out other benefits for older adults and people with disabilities:

  • Mixed-use development that includes housing, shopping, amenities, and
    access to transportation and professional offices provides easy, often
    walkable, access to necessities for daily living and substantially reduces or eliminates use of personal cars—thereby, (1) helping non-driving older people and people with disabilities to remain independent for much longer periods of time, (2) keeping these individuals integrated with others in the community, and (3)  significantly supporting the caregiving efforts of family members.
  • Subsidized housing in place of distressed or vacant strip malls, or developed above prosperous malls, helps address the State’s significant need for additional affordable housing, thereby helping to keep seniors and people with disabilities living in their own communities instead of relocating.
  • Small numbers of affordable units above a box store or strip mall, or incorporated as a component of a mixed-income larger redevelopment of a shopping center furthers the integration of low- and moderate-income families and individuals into the wider community.

Another Forbes Magazine shares the thought: “4 Models Of The Shopping Mall Of The Future.”

In Providence, RI, “You Can Now Live Inside America’s First Shopping Mall for $550 a Month: But there’s already a waiting list for these new micro apartments.”

“Your Professional Decline Is Coming (Much) Sooner Than You Think: Here’s how to make the most of it.” – The Atlantic

“The data are shockingly clear that for most people, in most fields, professional decline starts earlier than almost anyone thinks.”



Luci Gutiérrez

by Arthur C. Brooks

“‘It’s not true that no one needs you anymore.’

“These words came from an elderly woman sitting behind me on a late-night flight from Los Angeles to Washington, D.C. The plane was dark and quiet. A man I assumed to be her husband murmured almost inaudibly in response, something to the effect of ‘I wish I was dead.’

“Again, the woman: ‘Oh, stop saying that.’

“I didn’t mean to eavesdrop, but couldn’t help it. I listened with morbid fascination, forming an image of the man in my head as they talked. I imagined someone who had worked hard all his life in relative obscurity, someone with unfulfilled dreams—perhaps of the degree he never attained, the career he never pursued, the company he never started.

“At the end of the flight, as the lights switched on, I finally got a look at the desolate man. I was shocked. I recognized him—he was, and still is, world-famous. Then in his mid‑80s, he was beloved as a hero for his courage, patriotism, and accomplishments many decades ago.”

professional decline2

This a “long read” — but maybe just right for a Sunday (or any other) morning. Click here to read this article at The Atlantic.


Explore the 2018 Profile of Older Americans

Based on data from the U.S. Census Bureau, the profile illustrates the shifting demographics of Americans age 65 and older on key topic areas such as income, living arrangements, education, health, and caregiving. 

2018 oilder profile

Click on the graphic to view the entire report.

“How 65 came to be defined as a turning point into old age” – MarketPlace

“When I get older losing my hair
Many years from now
Will you still be sending me a valentine
Birthday greetings, bottle of wine?
If I’d been out till quarter to three
Would you lock the door?
Will you still need me, will you still feed me
When I’m sixty-four?”

Read more: The Beatles – When I’m Sixty-four Lyrics | MetroLyrics 

when im 65“Many of the regulars at The Allegheny Elks Lodge in Pittsburgh had a love/hate relationship with their 65th birthdays.” – Erika Beras/Marketplace

by Erika Beras

“For a lot of people, turning 65 is a kind of love-hate experience. At the Allegheny Elks Lodge in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the people who’ve seen their 65th birthdays come and go refer to themselves as ‘geezers.’

“Like Joe Campisi, 69, who’s a retired police officer. He says that at 30 years of age, 65 seemed a lifetime away. At 60: ’65 seemed a long ways away. Now I’m going to be 70 … and I blew right through 65.’

“For Linda Nehrer, who turned 65 nine years ago, the 65th birthday came and went. She continued working as a school administrator, spending time with her friends and singing with bands. Still, she says, when she thinks of her age: “Some days I don’t like it as much as other days.”

“Then there’s JoAnn Azinger, 74.”

Click here to read (or listen to)  this article in its entirety at MarketPlace.

“Supports to help older people age in place” – National Institute on Aging


Many older adults want to grow old at home. As a caregiver, you can help by arranging supports for the person (and for yourself)!

  • Personal care. Is bathing, washing hair, or dressing getting harder to do? As a caregiver, you can help. Or you could hire a trained aide for a short time each day.
  • Household chores. Does the person need help with chores like house cleaning, yard work, grocery shopping, or laundry? Some grocery stores and drugstores will take an order over the phone or online and bring the items to the person’s home. There are cleaning and yard services you can hire, or maybe someone you know has a housekeeper or gardener to suggest. Some housekeepers will help with laundry. Some dry cleaners will pick up and deliver your clothes.
  • Meals. Worried about your loved one not eating nutritious meals or being tired of eating alone? Encourage eating with others. Find out if meals are served at a nearby senior center or house of worship. Meal delivery programs bring hot meals into your home; some of these programs are free or low-cost.
  • Money management. Many caregivers lend a hand in bill paying and money management. Volunteers, financial counselors, or geriatric care managers can also help. Just make sure you get the referral from a trustworthy source, like your local Area Agency on Aging. Learn more about legal and financial planning for older adults.
  • Health care. You can help an older person set out medications for a week at a time using pill boxes. Ask the person if they would like company at medical appointments so you can take notes on what the doctor or nurse says. If the person is hospitalized and needs nursing care at home for a short time, make sure to talk with the hospital discharge planner to get help making arrangements.

Visit our website to learn more about aging in place


SAVE THE DATE(S) – “Racial disparity, implicit bias and white privilege” trainings


Seeking candidates for Hamilton Relay 2019 Deaf Community Leader award

deaf community award

Click here to download the application.

“A Clearer Map For Aging: ‘Elderhood’ Shows How Geriatricians Help Seniors Thrive” – NPR

Yesterday afternoon, Dr. Louise Aronson was featured on WITF radio; her interview (only 37 minutes long) is quite interesting. Click here to listen.

elderhood“Geriatrics is a specialty that should adapt and change with each patient, says physician and author Louise Aronson. ‘I need to be a different sort of doctor for people at different ages and phases of old age.’” – Robert Lang Photography/Getty Images

“Dr. Louise Aronson says the U.S. doesn’t have nearly enough geriatricians — physicians devoted to the health and care of older people: ‘There may be maybe six or seven thousand geriatricians,’ she says. ‘Compare that to the membership of the pediatric society, which is about 70,000.’

“Aronson is a geriatrician and a professor of medicine at the University of California, San Francisco. She notes that older adults make up a much larger percentage of hospital stays than their pediatric counterparts. The result, she says, is that many geriatricians wind up focusing on “the oldest and the frailest” — rather than concentrating on healthy aging.

“Aronson sees geriatrics as a specialty that should adapt and change with each patient. ‘My youngest patient has been 60 and my oldest 111, so we’re really talking a half-century there,’ she says. ‘I need to be a different sort of doctor for people at different ages and phases of old age.’

“She writes about changing approaches to elder health care and end-of-life care in her new book, Elderhood: Redefining Aging, Transforming Medicine, Reimagining Life.”

elderhood book


Community HealthChoices | Electronic Visit Verification Implementation Update and Technical Specifications

chc logo

As of January 1, 2020, providers of Personal Care Services (PCS) overseen by the Office of Long-Term Living (OLTL) and the Office of Developmental Programs (ODP) will be required to verify specific data elements in order to receive payment for each PCS claim submitted. As you are aware, PCS consists of services supporting activities of daily living (ADL) and instrumental activities of daily living (IADL). PCS providers will be required to use an Electronic Visit Verification (EVV) system to verify the following specific data elements: the type of service performed, the name of the individual receiving the service, the name(s) of individual(s) providing the service, the date and location of the service, and the time the service begins and ends. Beginning in October 2019, the PA Department of Human Services (DHS) will expect provider agencies, Agencies with Choice (AWC), and Vendor Fiscal (VF) agents to use EVV for the capture and verification of PCS visits. PA DHS has contracted with DXC and Sandata Technologies LLC to deliver the PA DHS EVV system, as well as provide system orientation and training to providers related to the PA DHS EVV system.

Data Aggregator
EVV data will be collected in the EVV Aggregator and compared to claim data before a claim can be paid. The EVV Aggregator will collect EVV data from both the PA DHS EVV System as well as any third-party EVV systems. Effective January 1, 2020, DHS will deny PCS claims that do not have corresponding visit(s) recorded in the EVV Aggregator regardless of whether providers use the PA DHS EVV system or a third party EVV system. Continue reading →

“Laughter really is the best medicine? In many ways, that’s no joke.” – The Washington Post

laughterDomenic Bahmann for The Washington Post

by Marlene Cimons

“Carl Reiner, 97, has been a comedic icon for more than 70 years, a perennial favorite of baby boomers who grew up with Sid Caesar and Dick Van Dyke. But even younger generations have come to appreciate his singular wit. He’s been an actor, screenwriter and director, as well as a legendary straight man for his old pal, Mel Brooks. He believes humor has enriched his life and boosted his longevity.

“’There is no doubt about it,’ he says. ‘Laughter is my first priority. I watch something every night that makes me laugh. I wake up and tickle myself while I’m still in bed. There is no greater pleasure than pointing at something, smiling and laughing about it. I don’t think there is anything more important than being able to laugh. When you can laugh, life is worth living. It keeps me going. It keeps me young. ‘

“In 2017, Reiner hosted an HBO documentary, ‘If You’re Not in the Obit, Eat Breakfast,’ featuring a number of still-active nonagenarians, including Brooks, who will be 93 this month, Van Dyke, 93, TV producer Norman Lear, who will be 97 next month, and actress Betty White, 97. He believes their good health — and his — is why they still enjoy humor and stay funny.”

Read this Washington Post article in its entirety, click here.