Agencies Join in Effort to Increase Senior Citizen
Use of Preventive Services
Magnifying self-reported data
for senior citizens not receiving recommended preventive services, new
guide underscores need for linking community and clinical strategies
focusing on the underserved
Percent of Adults Aged 65 and Older
Who Reported Not Receiving Influenza Vaccination within Past
Year, by Race/ Ethnicity, 2009*
Asian/PI = Asian/Pacific
Islander AI/AN = American Indian/Alaska Native Source:
Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, 50 states and the
District of Columbia
* An additional 0.4 percent of adults aged 65 and older reported
only receiving Flu Mist vaccinations “sprayed in the nose.”
March 15, 2011 - Every day in America about 10,000
people turn 65. By the year 2030, roughly one out of every five
Americans will be aged 65 years and older. Unfortunately, many senior
citizens currently do not receive vaccinations, screenings, and other
preventive services national experts recommend, according to the Centers
for Disease Control and Prevention.
“These important services help detect many
diseases, delay their onset, or identify them early in their most
treatable stages to ensure healthier, longer, and more productive lives
for older adults,” according to the CDC.
At the core of this report are eight indicators for
monitoring the use of clinical preventive services among adults 65 and
1. two vaccinations that protect against
influenza and pneumococcal disease;
2. five screenings for early detection of breast cancer, colorectal
cancer, diabetes, lipid disorders, and osteoporosis; and
3. one counseling service for smoking cessation.
This provides a baseline of data through which to
monitor progress in ensuring recommended services reach this key
Additionally, the report highlights seven other
recommended services for older adults:
1. alcohol misuse screening and counseling;
2. aspirin use;
3. blood pressure screening;
4. cervical cancer screening;
5. depression screening,
6. obesity screening and counseling; and
7. zoster vaccination.
“The challenges underlying the disparities in the
use of clinical preventive services are complex and reach beyond the
traditional heath care arena of patient-provider interactions,”
according to the CDC.
“Combining forces of the public health
infrastructure, aging services network, community-based organizations,
and linking to health systems affords a real opportunity to make a
difference. This report offers examples of recent activities and
interventions that have focused on increasing the use of clinical
preventive services in diverse communities.
“Among the highlighted efforts are community
actions designed to build awareness, create environments that offer
convenient access to services, and adopt public policies to increase
access and uptake of services.”
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