HIV/AIDS’ Effect on Aging: Still Unclear

by John-Manuel Andriote. This article originally appeared on Next Avenue.

Craig Washington has never spent a night in the hospital because of HIV. Not even the time in the early ’90s when he got cryptosporidiosis, one of the opportunistic infections that can wreak havoc on someone with a weakened immune system.

The Atlanta-based social worker and therapist’s good health is especially impressive for a 60-year-old man diagnosed with HIV back in 1985 — the year the HIV antibody test first became available.

“For the most part,” said Washington, “I have been very blessed, very fortunate, that my health is pretty good and a lot of the day-to-day energy level I’ve been able to sustain.” He attributes his.... Read More

             

‘We Weren’t Expected to Live This Long’

by Grace Birnstengel. This article originally appeared on Next Avenue.

(Editor’s note: This story is part of Still Here, Still Positive: A series on the first generation of Americans aging with HIV/AIDS, with support from The John A. Hartford Foundation.)

More than 500,000 people over 50 in the U.S. are growing older with the human immunodeficiency viruses (HIV) that, if untreated, cause acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, or AIDS.

While some have contracted HIV/AIDS in their later years (sparse sexual health promotion for older adults is often to blame), the bulk of these survivors were diagnosed decades ago, back in the throes of the AIDS epidemic of the 1980s and 1990s, when.... Read More

             

Diverse Elders Coalition receives $1,199,763 in renewed funding from The John A. Hartford Foundation to support diverse family caregivers

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 23, 2019

Contact: Jenna McDavid, National Director
646-653-5015 / jmcdavid@diverseelders.org

New York, NY – The Diverse Elders Coalition (DEC) has been approved for a two-year, $1,199,763 grant from The John A. Hartford Foundation to implement the programs and solutions the coalition has developed to support diverse family caregivers. This grant builds off the DEC’s previous planning grant, awarded by The John A. Hartford Foundation in 2018, to identify and address the unique needs of family caregivers in racially and ethnically diverse communities, American Indian and Alaska Native communities, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and/or transgender (LGBT) communities. Through the planning grant, the DEC has been able to.... Read More

             

I am extremely grateful…It’s been a year working to support diverse family caregivers

As I approach the end of my first full year working with the Diverse Elders Coalition, I am extremely grateful for the opportunities that I’ve had on both a personal and professional level. Working on the coalition’s caregiving initiative, “Addressing Unmet Family Caregiving Needs in Diverse Communities,” has been a very rewarding experience that will have a tremendous impact on my work as I move forward in my career.

My journey with the Diverse Elders Coalition began on January 7th, 2019. As the coalition’s newest Program Associate, my main focus has been on family caregiving. This initiative, a multi-year project to improve the multicultural capacities of service providers to support diverse family caregivers, allowed for opportunities.... Read More

             

NICOA Hosts Focus Groups with American Indian Caregivers

by Kayla Sawyer and Rebecca Owl Morgan

Earlier this year, the National Indian Council on Aging (NICOA) had the opportunity to host several focus groups with American Indian family caregivers in New Mexico. NICOA organized four focus groups with a total of 31 participants. The purpose of the groups was to learn more about these caregivers’ experiences helping an older family member or friend who has health problems and disabilities. During the focus groups, we learned about their caregiving duties, the challenges they face, and their encounters with healthcare professionals.

Our focus groups revealed how caregivers’ lives are impacted by their role as caregivers. Many American Indian caregivers spoke about skipping appointments and neglecting their own.... Read More

             

Sharing our caregiving research and making new connections at GSA 2019

By Jenna McDavid and Ocean Le

Last week, the Diverse Elders Coalition traveled to Austin, Texas for our first-ever Gerontological Society of America annual scientific meeting. This yearly event brings together researchers, academics, and others in the field of aging to discuss new findings and solutions for improving aging. The Diverse Elders Coalition was excited to participate in this year’s conference for several reasons: we were able to support our friends at the Journalists in Aging fellowship, we shared new research on family caregiving in diverse communities, and we had an exhibitor’s booth from which we disseminated reports, brochures, and other publications from the DEC and its members.

The week began with.... Read More

             

You Shouldn’t Need a Golden Ticket to Stay Mobile as You Age

by Dr. Terry Fulmer, President, The John A. Hartford Foundation. This article originally appeared on Next Avenue.

Perhaps no movie has better staying power than Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. Many of us raised our children — and now our grandchildren — on the 1971 hit. In a movie filled with iconic scenes, one that really resonates with me involves Charlie’s four grandparents.

It’s hard to forget Grandpa Joe being confined to a bed, as life in the house goes on around him. He’s seemingly living out his later years as a passive.... Read More

             

National Family Caregivers Month: Strength and Resilience

November is a very special month. It marks the month of Thanksgiving, where millions of families and friends across the United States gather to give thanks, show appreciation for one another, and feast. November also marks National Family Caregivers Month, a time to recognize the people taking care of the ones they love. Although National Family Caregivers Month is not as widely celebrated as Thanksgiving, it is just as important for millions of families across the United States. Along with expressing gratitude for family caregivers, National Family Caregivers Month is a time to highlight the issues of family caregivers, provide resources, and to advocate for supportive policies and programs.

There are many issues that family caregivers.... Read More

             

Caregivers Need Support for their Diverse Needs

by Scott Bane, Program Officer, The John A. Hartford Foundation. This article originally appeared on The John A. Hartford Foundation’s “What We’re Learning” blog.

Dear Colleagues—

Family caregivers provide an estimated $470 billion in unpaid care each year. All family caregivers need more support, but the diverse needs of family caregivers have not been fully appreciated. Thanks to research supported by The John A. Hartford Foundation, we’re learning a lot more about the diversity of family caregivers in this country and how we can better support them.

Family caregivers are represented in all races, ethnicities, ages, sexualities, gender.... Read More

             

I Forgot — And Maybe That’s Okay

by Dr. Terry Fulmer, President, The John A. Hartford Foundation. This article originally appeared on Next Avenue.

“I have been forgetting things for years, but now I forget in a new way. I used to believe I could eventually retrieve whatever was lost and then commit it to memory. Now I know I can’t possibly. Whatever’s gone is hopelessly gone. And what’s new doesn’t stick.”

This passage is just one of many favorites from Nora Ephron’s final book, I Remember Nothing — a 161-page testament to the fact that as we age, our memories get.... Read More

             

I Attended a Focus Group with Vietnamese Caregivers. Here are Some of the Things I Learned.

Last month, I had the opportunity to attend a focus group with Vietnamese family caregivers in Houston, Texas. During the focus group, I learned more about their caregiving experiences, their challenges, and the changes they would like to see in the U.S. healthcare system. Here are some of the things I learned.

“Very thankful for my parents, but sometimes it can be hard to please them, especially when dealing with right and wrong because of our cultural values.” – focus group participant

Cultural Values Influences Caregiving Expectations

In the Vietnamese community, traditional values have a big impact on caregivers. Traditional values such as filial piety — respect for one’s parents, elders, and ancestors — influence many Vietnamese caregivers to exclusively.... Read More

             

Eradicating Elder Abuse is Everyone’s Responsibility

by Dr. Terry Fulmer, President, The John A. Hartford Foundation. This article originally appeared on Next Avenue.

Are you safe at home?

Many of us take the answer to that question for granted. After all, our home should be our refuge. It should be a place where we feel safe, secure and surrounded by people we love and trust — especially as we age. For the one in 10 older Americans who suffer elder mistreatment, however, home may simply not be a safe place.

As we recognize World Elder Abuse.... Read More

             
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