New Congress begins slowly, but seniors’ priorities remain on the docket

by Marci Phillips. This article originally appeared on the NCOA blog.

The 35-day partial government shutdown that occurred during December and January was the longest government shutdown on record, and it hampered many aspects of the government’s work on behalf of older adults. While the government is back at work, Congress must pass a funding bill by February 15th. The National Council on Aging‘s Public Policy and Advocacy team are monitoring the negotiations and the shutdown’s effects on benefits and services that older adults rely on.

Only 5 of the 12 FY19 appropriations.... Read More

             

Do NYC’s Seniors Need More Mental Health First Aid?

By Roshan Abraham. This article originally appeared in City Limits.

When two suicides by seniors occurred within a year at Knickerbocker Village, a 1,590-apartment housing complex in the Two Bridges section of Manhattan’s Lower East Side, it rocked the community, says Councilmember Margaret Chin, who represents the 1st Council District where the complex sits.

In November of 2017, a terminally-ill Chinese community leader in his 60’s took his own life. Months later, in July of 2018, a 78 year-old former tenant association president and Vietnam veteran committed suicide.

Knickerbocker Village provides mental-health services for seniors through its Naturally Occuring Retirement Community, or NORC, an unplanned retirement community where senior services are funded.... Read More

             

Wisconsin Training Health Providers to Care for Aging Population

by David Wahlberg. This article originally appeared in the Wisconsin State Journal.

Dr. Matthew Weiss’ “patient,” an older man playing the role of an 80-year-old with diabetes, told Weiss he recently fell on the way to the bathroom and hit a dresser.

“I toppled over and banged my head into it on the way down,” the man said.

Weiss suggested the man sit on his bed at first when getting up, to steady his blood pressure. He checked the man’s feet and asked about medications and throw rugs. When the man said he drinks two beers.... Read More

             

SAGEPositive: How SAGE cares for long-term survivors of HIV

By Aspen Christian. This article was originally published on the SAGE Blog.

Did you know that by the year 2020, 70 percent of the people living with HIV in the United States will be over the age of 50? How about that older adults (age 50 and up) account for 17 percent of all new HIV diagnoses in the United States?

The 30th annual World AIDS Day was this past Saturday, December 1st, and this year’s theme is “Know your status.” Knowing your status gives you powerful information to keep you and your potential partners healthy. SAGE can refer you to places across New York State where you can.... Read More

             

Its Flu Season! Don’t Wait, Get Vaccinated!

Flu season is upon us! It is so important for people 65 years and older to get vaccinated because they are at greater risk of serious complications from the flu. While flu seasons can vary in severity, during most seasons, people 65 years and older have the greatest weight of severe flu disease. In recent years, it’s estimated that roughly 70 to 85 percent of seasonal flu-related deaths have occurred in people 65 years and older. It is particularly important for Hispanic older adults, as historically, Hispanic adults were 30 percent less likely to have received the flu shot compared to non-Hispanic whites.

.... Read More
             

SEARAC Toolkit Sheds Light on Public Charge Proposal

The Trump Administration has proposed broadening the set of government services considered when determining whether an individual is a ‘public charge,’ a term applied to someone who is likely to rely on government assistance for support. If a person is considered a public charge, they may be denied a green card.

Seniors and parents of U.S. citizens are a significant, and growing, segment of immigrants to the U.S. and are critical to the well-being of intergenerational families. Between 1990 and 2010, the number of immigrants age 65 and older grew from 2.7 million to nearly 5 million. The number of parents of U.S. citizens who have been admitted as legal permanent residents more than tripled between 1994 and 2016. In making it.... Read More

             

Eczema Symptoms Found to Be Worse for African Americans

by Ryan Whirty. This article originally appeared in The Louisiana Weekly.

All skin – and a particular skin disorder – is not the same, as a recent study into the effects and symptoms of eczema, a frustratingly itchy, often painful and potentially embarrassing affliction of the dermis, shows.

In a study published in September in Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology – the scientific journal of the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology – researchers examined the molecular differences between the skin of African Americans with atopic dermatitis (the formal name for eczema).... Read More

             

What’s At Stake In Trump Promise To Roll Back ACA Nondiscrimination Rule?

by Lois Uttley. This article originally appeared on the Community Catalyst blog.

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) includes a groundbreaking nondiscrimination provision known as Section 1557, or the “Health Care Rights Law,” which serves as the first federal law to prohibit sex discrimination in health care. Section 1557 is critical to protecting women and LGBTQ individuals from discrimination in health care. Unfortunately, Section 1557 is not immune from ongoing efforts to sabotage the ACA: The Trump Administration indicated that it intends to roll back or repeal parts of the rule that the Obama administration issued in 2016 implementing Section 1557.

What is Section 1557 and how did the Obama rule interpret it?

Section 1557 of the ACA.... Read More

             

Winning Strategies: Organizing Consumers for Delivery Reform

by Jessie Zimmerer. This post originally appeared on the Center for Community Engagement in Health Innovation blog.

If health care advocacy were a sport, there’d be no question about our defensive strategy. Much of our collective efforts over the last few years have centered around defeating threats to Medicaid and Medicare, and protecting the Affordable Care Act. Defense is crucial; defense is where games are lost. And defense is exciting. There’s a palpable urgency in the crunch to defend needed programs that piques the interest of otherwise passive spectators, and as our state partners have seen,.... Read More

             

Health Needs of Older Rural Immigrants Often Overlooked

by Beth Baker. This article originally appeared on Next Avenue.

Micaela Rios, 64, who immigrated to rural western Kansas from Mexico 20 years ago, has a difficult job in a meatpacking plant. After years of packing beef in cold, wet conditions, she developed arthritis and high blood pressure. When she was 60, she had a heart attack.

Many immigrants and refugees work alongside her, some of them older than she, Rios said. Despite the arduous work, she feels lucky that the job comes with health insurance. She hopes to retire once Medicare kicks in.

“One reason she hasn’t retired is because of her health insurance,” said her daughter, Karla Davila, who acted as her mother’s interpreter for this interview..... Read More

             

Heart Disease Still Deadly for African American Women

by D. Kevin McNeir for the Washington Informer.

The future remains uncertain for the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which opened the door for a major overhaul of the United States healthcare system with President Barack Obama’s signature in 2010, and which continues to be attacked and subjected to legislative revisions initiated by President, Donald J. Trump and his Republican colleagues.

But women, who tend to serve as the primary caregivers for their families while often ignoring their own health, can ill afford to wait until the dust finally clears, particularly when it comes to their hearts.

Often thought of as a “man’s disease,” heart disease stands as the leading cause of death for women in the United.... Read More

             
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