Southeast Asian Americans Speak Out to Protect Affordable Healthcare

For many Southeast Asian Americans, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) repeal fight last year felt personal.

When the ACA was first passed, uninsured rates in Cambodian, Hmong, Lao, and Vietnamese American communities were high. Compared to the 15% of Americans overall who did not have health insurance in 2011, 20% of Cambodian, 20% of Vietnamese, 19% of Laotian, and 16% of Hmong Americans were uninsured. Too many families used emergency rooms as last-resort healthcare providers or went for years without regular check-ups.

Only four years later in 2015, the uninsured rate was cut in half. Thousands of families were finally accessing the preventative and life-saving care that they needed. Some accessed care through the healthcare exchange, supported by subsidies to.... Read More


I Just Wanna Dance!

Honoring Our Experience, a social services program run by the Shanti Project, sponsors a series of REVIVAL dances to honor long-term HIV survivors in San Francisco. Hank wrote this piece for a talent show at the February 2018 REVIVAL dance and has graciously shared it with the Diverse Elders Coalition for publication on our website.

It’s 1959 and I’m six years old. My family has gathered at my grandparents’ house this Sunday to watch The Ed Sullivan Show. I’m sitting on the cold linoleum floor, watching, as this very tall, thin, very regal-looking woman walks onto.... Read More


What does cultural competency mean to you?

A married, gay older couple living in a nursing home introduced themselves as brothers to their healthcare providers and fellow residents because they were afraid of discrimination. A limited-English proficient Chinese American older adult was exhibiting signs of dementia, but her husband thought they were natural symptoms of aging and didn’t tell his family members or doctor what they were experiencing. A home care worker could not figure out how to remove the traditional dress that an American Indian Elder was wearing, so she cut the dress off — not knowing that in the Elder’s culture, clothing was only cut off of a person’s body after they had died.

Stories about diverse elders experiencing a lack of culturally competent care.... Read More


Increasing the Capacity of Family Caregiver Interventions

Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) are the fastest growing minority group in America, according to the U.S. Census. Between 2010 and 2030, the AAPI older adult population is projected to increase by 145%. A rapidly increasing aging population demands resilient, capable, and enduring systems of care. Familial systems of care are more prevalent in AAPI communities than other racial groups, with 42% of AAPIs providing care to an older adult, compared to 22% of the general population.

The Tailored Caregiver Assessment and Referral® (TCARE®) program is an evidence-based, care management software platform designed to enable care managers to more effectively support family caregivers by efficiently targeting services to their needs and strengths. The TCARE® program includes.... Read More


Successful Outcomes of the LGBT Aging Policy Task Force

by Dr. Marcy Adelman. This article originally appeared in the San Francisco Bay Times.

Four years ago, the San Francisco LGBT Aging Policy Task Force concluded its 18-month tenure by submitting its final report, LGBT Aging at the Golden Gate: San Francisco Policy Issues and Recommendations, to the Board of Supervisors. The LGBT task force had been charged with studying and identifying systemic barriers to living well and to make recommendations for enhancing quality of life and reducing health disparities and inequities for LGBT older adults.

The task force’s report was unanimously adopted by the Board of Supervisors.... Read More


Join the Diverse Elders Coalition at the 2018 Aging in America Conference

All five of the Diverse Elders Coalition member organizations — as well as many of our partners and friends — will be attending this year’s Aging in America Conference, hosted by the American Society on Aging, in San Francisco from March 26th through 29th. The DEC will participate in a number of workshops on advocacy, caregiving, data disaggregation and more. We are excited about this opportunity to bring diverse voices to the table at one of the nation’s largest convenings on aging issues.

Conference attendees who are interested in better serving diverse elders or learning more about.... Read More


Elder Abuse Won’t Stop By Itself

Approximately 1 in 10 Americans aged 60+ have experienced some form of elder abuse. Broadly defined, elder abuse is any form of mistreatment that results in harm or loss to an older person. More specifically, the World Health Organization defines elder abuse as “a single, or repeated act, or lack of appropriate action, occurring within any relationship where there is an expectation of trust, which causes harm or distress to an older person.”

The legal definition of elder abuse varies from state-to-state.

Elder abuse affects people from all ethnic backgrounds and social status, and most victims of abuse are women.  Elder abuse may be physical, emotion, sexual, exploitive, neglect, or abandonment. Specifically defined:

Physical abuse includes inflicting, or threatening to.... Read More

It’s February, And I’m STILL Not Exercising Every Week

It’s almost the end February. Would you look at that.

The end of February, and already I’m not exercising every week (or ever). I haven’t finished my crochet project. To be sure, I did register for the American Crossword Puzzle Tournament (priorities, people!), but I haven’t been printing and solving crossword puzzles on paper in preparation.

February is a curious month. It sits there, between January’s New Year and March’s springtime, pretending to be innocuous.

Don’t be fooled: February is not innocuous. It bears the weight of all of our shattered dreams. It is the month of reckoning.

In most years, late December through January has a predictable arc. It’s cold, dark, and snowy. BUT, the days are getting longer..... Read More


Chinese Seniors in New York: Where to Live

By Zhihong Li. To read the original article in Chinese,  click here.

Over 20 years ago, Aunt Lee was ahead of her time among New York City’s Chinese elders when she decided to apply for an affordable housing unit in Flushing, out in the borough of Queens.

“I lived in Manhattan’s Chinatown at that time,” she said. “I knew the news from the newspaper that an affordable apartment building for seniors was open for application. I applied successfully. It has been 21 years.”

New York City’s aging Chinese population is increasing rapidly as affordable housing has become more rare. To solve this problem, some local elected officials ask the city to approve the building of more affordable housing.

.... Read More

Worried About Care for Your Aging Parents? Support Racial Justice.

As a long-term care advocate, the most common question I get from friends is about access. A friend needs home care for his father with dementia, but he doesn’t know where to start or whether he can afford it. Another friend who has begun applying for Medicaid for her mother soon discovers that the application process is arduous and deeply invasive. Worse, she learns that paying for a nursing home will quickly deplete her mother’s savings—as designed by Medicaid—just to qualify for government support. The safety net for people who need long-term care is fractured, unfair and complicated—a painful realization at the worst possible time.

I think of these scenarios when I’m caught in policy debates about.... Read More

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