Health and Medicine for Seniors

Senior’s ability to balance on one leg may detect brain health, stroke risk

One-leg standing test is easy way to determine early signs of being at risk for a stroke and cognitive impairment

By Tucker Sutherland, editor, SeniorJournal.com

Dec. 19, 2014 – You know how they warn you on TV when they are about to show something gruesome. We need to use that same type of warning on this report. It is about a new study that finds senior citizens - average age of 67 - that have trouble balancing on one leg for at least 20 seconds may have increased risk of small blood vessel damage in the brain - stroke - and reduced cognitive function. More...

Health and Medicine for Seniors

Seniors keeping teeth longer than ever, tips for keeping it up

Simple, routine dental care matters for senior citizens to save teeth and live healthier

Dec. 18, 2014 - Today, approximately 75 percent of senior citizens over age 65 have kept some or all of their teeth - a record -thanks to better preventive measures like community water fluoridation and daily brushing with fluoride toothpaste, according to the American Dental Association (ADA).  The group offers some additional tips for keeping this dental progress going. More...

Alzheimer's, Dementia & Mental Health

Most seniors with memory loss, dementia skip free testing from Medicare

Free dementia clinical testing now available to all senior citizens in Medicare

Dec. 17, 2014 – Alzheimer’s disease and the associated loss of memory and cognitive ability is usually found to be the top fear of senior citizens. Yet, despite clear evidence that memory and cognitive abilities are sliding down hill, the majority of seniors with these symptoms have not been to a doctor for evaluation. More...

Aging & Longevity

Senior citizens have special brain spot to help with holiday shopping

Senior shoppers use additional brain area to remember competing consumer products and choose the better one

Unlike adults in their 20s and 30s, senior citizens use a structure called the ventromedial prefrontal cortex for shopping decisions that rely on memory.

Dec. 16, 2014 – Okay, the holiday season is in full swing but you still have shopping to do. Will that old senior brain be up to the task? It will, says new research, but the senior citizen will call on an additional brain area where it will find extra brainpower to make shopping decisions - especially those that rely on memory. More...

 

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Health and Medicine for Seniors

Tiny sensors may soon monitor seniors' medicines from the inside

Managing medication conflicts and confusions more pressing as 10,000 baby boomers turn sixty-five every day, and 90 percent suffer at least one chronic illness.

Dec. 15, 2014 - Ever been lost on a new trail on a hike? Or confused between north and south in a new city? Or after a certain age, unsure if you really took that anti-cholesterol pill last night, or was it the blood pressure pill?  They kind-of look the same. Your gut may soon provide the answer. More...

Senior Citizen Politics

Pensions of retirees, widows face cuts in action by House of Representatives

AARP. Pension Rights Center, labor unions trying to build last-minute opposition

Dec. 10, 2014 – While most seniors were focused on Thanksgiving with their families and then getting ready for Christmas, some members of the U.S. House of Representative have hit them with a nightmare… a reduction in pension benefits for those already retired or their widows. This amendment is rapidly moving forward but senior advocates are swinging into action to motivate senior citizens to let their voices be heard.More

Health and Medicine for Seniors

Cold, flu meds risky for senior citizens with high blood pressure

Some over-the-counter meds can have negative impact on hypertension

Dec. 10, 2014 – It is the season for colds and flu. Most of us seniors do not hesitate to seek quick relief from an over-the-counter (OTC) medication. Not so fast, says the American Heart Association, most senior citizens also have hypertension. Some medications taken over the counter can have a negative impact on blood pressure. More...

Health and Medicine for Seniors

Bad signs on horizon although flu season off to slow start

Early check of dominant viruses indicate a severe season, less protection from vaccine, but better than nothing for seniors

Dec. 9, 2014 – The good news about the 2014-15 flu season is that so far influenza activity is slow. This, however, is swamped by the potential bad news – it is looking like this could develop into a rough season with a high death rate and this season’s flu vaccine may not been the best match to beat back the viruses that are showing up. Still, senior citizens should get a flu shot! You will fair better than without it. More...

Nutrition, Vitamins & Supplements for Seniors

Vitamin claims for treating age-related macular degeneration challenged

Research shows that of 11 popular supplements analyzed all have misleading claims

Dec. 9, 2014 - Americans spend billions of dollars each year on nutritional supplements. And, for senior citizens with aging eyes, purchasing eye vitamins that claim to help protect vision is an attractive proposition. Unfortunately, a new study finds these claims for most products from the top-selling brands don't match the scientific evidence, especially for treating the leading cause of blindness among older adults, age-related macular degeneration (AMD). More...

Nutrition, Vitamins & Supplements for Seniors

Powerhouse vegetables and fruits for your healthy menu choices

Watercress leads the list, red pepper best fruit – failing to make list: raspberry, tangerine, cranberry, garlic, onion, and blueberry

Dec. 7, 2014 – Senior citizens who want to eat healthy, and most do, should probably put more emphasis on eating watercress. It was ranked number one among 41 “powerhouse” fruits and vegetables in a study published earlier this year in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention journal “Preventing Chronic Disease.” More...

Alzheimer's, Dementia & Mental Health

Protecting brain health of seniors is goal of new campaign

Nearly 13% of seniors, age 60 plus, reported increased confusion and memory loss in last 12 months

Dec. 5, 2014 - A national campaign has been launched by the Eldercare Locator to better educate the public about the risks to brain health for senior citizens and simple strategies to help mitigate those risks. More..

Health and Medicine for Seniors

Common prostate cancer treatment associated with decreased survival in older men

Evidence growing that androgen deprivation therapy may lead to earlier death

Dec. 4, 2014 - A common prostate cancer therapy - androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) - should not be used in men whose cancer has not spread beyond the prostate, says a study led by researchers at Henry Ford Hospital. The findings are particularly important for men with longer life expectancies because the therapy exposes them to more adverse side effects, it is associated with increased risk of death and it deprives men of the opportunity for a cure by other methods. More...

Health and Medicine for Seniors

Dance helps people with Parkinson’s, maybe healthy senior citizens, too

Ballroom dancing could help people with Parkinson’s improve their balance and mobility, and maybe do the same for other seniors

By Tucker Sutherland, editor, SeniorJournal.com

Dec. 4, 2014 – Researchers at the University of Southhampton, UK, recently announced that participants in their study who had Parkinson’s and took part in ballroom dance lessons improved their balance, confidence and posture. They are not the first to discover that dancing can make life better and safer for Parkinson’s patients, who are also almost exclusively senior citizens. Maybe seniors without PD should also consider how this exercise reduced falls in the PD group. More...

Nutrition, Vitamins & Supplements for Seniors

Protection from cardiovascular disease found in red wine, a senior favorite

Resveratrol binds with KSRP regulator protein to activate anti-inflammatory effect

Dec. 4, 2014 – Reports on the health benefits of coffee and wine are always popular with senior citizens and this latest on red wine is a zinger. A natural substance present in red wine, resveratrol, inhibits the formation of inflammatory factors that trigger cardiovascular diseases. More...

Caregiver & Elder Care News

Seniors Need to Understand Hospice, Palliative Care - Free Videos Online

National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization expands its available video resources to focus on advance care planning, grief, caregiving and more

Dec. 4, 2014 – Hospice and palliative care are things we seldom think about. So, many of us have just a foggy idea of what it is, and, too often, have to get a crash course when the need arises. Senior citizens and their caregivers need to be better informed and the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization is making it easier with a group of videos that can be viewed free online. More...

U.S. health spending growth lowest since 1960, Medicare growth drops, too

Medicare spending grew 3.4% in 2013, down from 4% growth in 2012; due mostly to slower growth in enrollment, and spending changes included in Obamacare

By Mary Agnes Carey, Kaiser Health News

Dec. 3, 2014 - National health spending grew 3.6 percent in 2013, the lowest annual increase since the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) began tracking the statistic in 1960, officials said Wednesday. More...

Medicare & Medicaid News

CMS Takes Another Big Step in Fighting Medicare Fraud, Abuse

CMS says new rules enhance Medicare provider oversight; strengthens beneficiary protections

Dec. 3, 2014 - New rules that strengthen oversight of Medicare providers and protect taxpayer dollars from bad actors were announced today by Marilyn Tavenner, administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The new safeguards are designed to prevent physicians and other providers with unpaid debt from re-entering Medicare, remove providers with a pattern or practice of abusive billing and implement other provisions to help save more than $327 million annually. More...

Health and Medicine for Seniors

Improving patient safety saves 50,000 lives, 1.3 million from harm, $12 billion in cost

Hospital-acquired conditions decline by 17 percent over a three-year period

Dec. 3, 2014 - A report released by the Department of Health and Human Services yesterday shows an estimated 50,000 fewer patients died in hospitals and approximately $12 billion in health care costs were saved as a result of a reduction in hospital-acquired conditions from 2010 to 2013.  This progress toward a safer health care system occurred during a period of concerted attention by hospitals throughout the country to reduce adverse events. More...

Health and Medicine for Seniors

Prescriptions for drugs that make bones stronger lower than expected for senior men

This therapy recommended for men receiving androgen deprivation therapy in Canada

Dec. 2, 2014 – The prescribing of drugs to strengthen bone for men is low, even for those at high risk of subsequent fractures, according to a Canadian study in the December 3 issue of JAMA. Some guidelines recommend use of bisphosphonates (a class of drugs used to strengthen bone) for men on androgen deprivation therapy (ADT), an effective, widely used therapy for men with prostate cancer. Adverse effects include bone loss and increased fracture risk. More...

Health and Medicine for Seniors

Mobility is most common disability for American senior citizens

High disability rates for seniors in Southern counties, especially central Appalachia and Mississippi Delta

Dec. 2, 2014 - Nearly 40 percent of people age 65 and older had at least one disability, according to a U.S. Census Bureau report that covered the period 2008 to 2012. Of those 15.7 million people, two-thirds of them say they had difficulty in walking or climbing. More...

Medicare & Medicaid News

Medicare Accountable Care Organizations may add emphasis on primary care services

Shared Savings Program Proposed Rule reflects focus on primary care and improved incentives for participation, quality, and efficiency

Dec. 2, 2014 – In response to suggestions from program participants, experts, consumer groups, and the stakeholder community at large, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has proposed changes to improve the Shared Savings Program for Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs). CMS says this will put “greater emphasis on primary care services and promoting transitions to performance-based risk arrangements.” More...

Aging & Longevity

Elderly couples need marriage counseling to avoid risk of broken heart

A bad marriage is more harmful to heart health than a good marriage is beneficial; women at greatest risk

Dec. 1, 2014 - Older couples in a bad marriage – particularly female spouses – have a higher risk for heart disease than those in a good marriage, finds the first nationally representative study of its kind. The findings suggest the need for marriage counseling and programs aimed at promoting marital quality and well-being for couples into their 70s and 80s, said lead investigator Hui Liu, a Michigan State University sociologist. More...

Aging & Longevity

Seniors favor tougher driving laws, even for themselves

Nearly 90% of older drivers – age 65 up - report no crashes or moving violations in last two years

Dec. 1, 2014 – Senior citizens want tougher driving laws, including everything from bans on the use of wireless devices to ignition interlocks for DUI offenders. None of this is surprising about the law-and-order age group. What may surprise many, however, is that an overwhelming majority of seniors favor greater scrutiny in the license-renewal process for themselves and their peers, according to the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety's latest report on aging Americans. More...

Medicare & Medicaid News

Medicare wants seniors to get approval for non-emergency ambulance use

Anti-fraud program begins today in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and South Carolina

By Lisa Gillespie

Senior citizens living in three states will need prior approval from Medicare before they can get an ambulance to take them to cancer or dialysis treatments. The change, which begins today, is part of a three-year pilot to combat extraordinarily high rates of fraudulent billing by ambulance companies in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and South Carolina. More...

Aging & Longevity

Elderly brains learn, but maybe too much

Not as good as younger people at filtering out irrelevant information

Nov. 30, 2014 - A new study led by Brown University reports that older learners retained the mental flexibility needed to learn a visual perception task but were not as good as younger people at filtering out irrelevant information. More...

Senior Citizen Politics

Senior Citizen now official title at age 60 in Bangladesh

Sixty year old President makes the declaration after congressional approval

Nov. 29, 2014 - The President of Bangladesh, Abdul Hamid, has declared the country's people aged 60 years or above as senior citizens. President Hamid, who turned 60 in January, urged all to work sincerely to ensure social dignity and security, and other facilities including food, clothing and treatment for senior citizens. More..

Nutrition, Vitamins & Supplements for Seniors

Calorie count rules cleared to add labeling to menus, vending machines

Weight-watching, health-conscious seniors expected to be big fans of help from FDA with choosing health foods

Nov. 26, 2014 – Senior citizens - among the most frequent consumers of restaurants and other eating-out places – will also be among the most pleased with the Food and Drug Administration’s new rules requiring that calorie information be listed on menus and menu boards in chain restaurants, similar retail food establishments and vending machines with 20 or more locations. The goal is to provide consumers with more nutritional information about the foods theng 100 percent of men - now qualify for, and should consider, starting a statin medication to reduce their risk of cardiovascular disease, under the recently released cholesterol guidelines from the American College of Cardiology (ACC) and the American Heart Association (AHA). More...

Alzheimer's, Dementia & Mental Health

New Alzheimer’s Disease Fighter may be Protein that Awakens Brain

Eliminating protein called orexin made mice sleep longer and strongly slowed the production of brain plaques

Nov. 24, 2014 - Scientists at Washington University, who earlier established links between sleep problems and Alzheimer's, now say a protein that stimulates the brain to awaken from sleep may be a target for preventing Alzheimer's disease. More...

Nutrition, Vitamins & Supplements for Seniors

Going Gluten-Free May Not Be Good for Your Health: Consumer Reports

CR survey finds 63% of Americans believe a gluten-free diet would improve physical or mental health, FDA also says cutting gluten isn’t always more nutritious or better for most people

Nov. 21, 2014 -  Gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye, has become the latest dietary villain, blamed for everything from forgetfulness to joint pain to weight gain.  But Consumer Reports (CR) is shedding light on common misconceptions about going gluten-free. More...

Medicare & Medicaid News

Senior Citizen Obesity Counseling Medicare Benefit Goes Largely Unused

Only about 120,000 seniors have participated, including about 50,000 last year

By Phil Galewitz, Kaiser Health News

Nov. 20, 2014 - Three years ago, the Obama administration offered hope to millions of overweight seniors when it announced Medicare would offer free weight-loss counseling. But less than 1 percent of Medicare’s 50 million beneficiaries have used the benefit so far. More...

Health and Medicine for Seniors

Pain Suffered by Aging Adults is Topic for New Publication

One thing that does not increase your pain - this magazine is free

By Tucker Sutherland, editor, SeniorJournal.com

Nov. 19, 2014 – I have to admit I did not see this coming – a whole publication dedicated to pains suffered by senior citizens. But, when I stop and think about, I realize it is a major topic of conversation among many of my senior friends. This subject choice was made the editors of a new publication series named “From Policy to Practice” from The Gerontological Society of America (GSA). Oh, and did I mention it’s free?  More...

Health and Medicine for Seniors

More Heart Attack Victims Saved with Faster Response of Coordinated Effort

Collaboration between paramedics and hospitals in treating heart attack patients resulted in shorter emergency department wait times that result in better survival.

Nov. 19, 2014 – Virtually all senior citizens know that when a heart attack strikes, the faster the victim receives medical attention, the better the chances the patient will survive. A report released today about a coordinated emergency response system proves faster care can save thousands of lives and that it is possible to speed up the rescue effort. More...

Medicare & Medicaid News

Problems with Enrolling in Medicare Part B Clarified in New Report

Medicare Rights Center identifies problems, recommends ways to improve the system

Nov. 19, 2014 - The Medicare Rights Center, where staffers spend much of their time counseling senior citizens about Medicare, has released a report detailing common enrollment challenges facing people new to the Medicare program. And, the authors even contribute some thoughts on how the enrollment system can be improved. More...

Medicare & Medicaid News

Medicare Information Fails to Get Five-Star Rating from GAO

Government Accountability Office wants better consumer communications from Medicare and Health & Human Services

Nov. 19, 2014 – Before senior citizens put too much faith in the five-star ratings and tools provided by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, they should read a new report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) that says Health & Human Services needs to see that CMS improves the information and ensures the tools address the needs of their consumers. More...

 

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Health and Medicine for Seniors

Senior Heart Patients Feeling Hopeless Find Relief with Home Exercise

Patients likely thinking more positively about the future, more capable of making positive changes for a healthy lifestyle

Nov.18, 2014 — Home exercise can ease feelings of hopelessness in older people – average age of 66 - with coronary heart disease, according to a study presented at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions 2014. More...

Health and Medicine for Seniors

Erectile Dysfunction More Likely in Men with Early Vascular Disease

‘Erectile function can be a window into men’s cardiovascular and overall health’

Nov. 18, 2014 — Men who have asymptomatic subclinical vascular disease are more likely to develop erectile dysfunction than men who don’t have early stage vascular disease, according to research presented at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions 2014. More...

Medicare & Medicaid News

Helpful Guide to Choosing a Medicare Drug Plan May Help Meet Deadline

 Deadline for changing your Medicare plans is end of day December 7

Nov. 17, 2014 –Medicare Open Enrollment ends on December 7, 2014, and it is a safe bet that millions of senior citizens have not taken the time to carefully consider their Medicare health coverage to be sure it meets their needs at the lowest cost possible. Below is a very helpful guide provided by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services that will make this challenge less difficult. More...

Health and Medicine for Seniors

Stent Patients Suffer Fewer Heart Attacks if Anti-Clotting Meds Extended

Benefits extended if taken for more than standard 12 months - patients average age 62

Nov. 17, 2014 - Patients - average age 62 - who took two anti-clotting medications beyond the standard 12 months after stent placement were significantly less likely to develop blood clots within their stents or to have a heart attack than those whose treatment followed the 12-month protocol, according to late-breaking clinical trial research presented at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions 2014. More...

Nutrition, Vitamins & Supplements for Seniors

Chemical in Coffee Appears to Prevent Weight Gain, Obesity-Related Disease

Previous studies have shown that coffee consumption may lower the risk for chronic diseases

Nov. 14, 2014 – Senior citizens are delighted to hear good things about their favorite drink – coffee – and it seems to just keep on coming. The latest is research that has found a chemical compound commonly found in coffee may help prevent some of the damaging effects of obesity and prevents weight gain. More...

Medicare & Medicaid News

Medicare Enrollment Period Reminders of What You Need to Know

First, don’t get confused with open enrollment for Obamacare, which is also happening

By Mary Agnes Carey and Julie Rovner

Nov. 14, 2014 – Editor’s Note: Unfortunately, the “open enrollment” period for Obamacare – the Affordable Care Act, national health insurance program for most of those not eligible for Medicare – has been scheduled by Health and Human Services to overlap the Medicare open enrollment. Changes to Medicare advantage and the so-called Medicare prescription drug “doughnut hole” are taking center stage for senior citizens. More...

 

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Health and Medicine for Seniors

Seniors My Dash Hopes for Broader Use of Internet for Health Information

Few seniors use internet for health information, especially the large number with low health literacy

Nov. 12, 2014 - Providing health information on the internet may not be the “cure all” that it is hoped to be, at least for senior citizens. A new study shows few Americans 65 or older use the internet to find health information and many seniors have low health literacy. Among those with poor knowledge about health, less than ten percent use the internet to seek health information. The new concern is that greater reliance on digital health information will just leave many seniors further behind. More...

Medicare & Medicaid News

Hospice Care Achieving Its Goals with Medicare Patients: JAMA

Study finds Lower Rate of Hospitalization, ICU Admission, Invasive Procedures and Costs, plus patient and family satisfaction

Nov. 11, 2014 – Hospice care has not clearly carved out its role in healthcare, although a new study shows it is achieving the goals many envisioned - significantly lower rates of hospitalization, intensive care unit (ICU) admissions and invasive procedures at the end of life, along with significantly lower health care expenditures during the last year of life. More...

Medicare & Medicaid News

Medicare Lung Cancer Screening a Lifesaver for Seniors, Say Radiologists

CT lung cancer screening recommended for adults 55-80 with 30 pack a year smoking history, currently smoke or have quit within 15 years

Nov. 11, 2014 - New Medicare computed tomography (CT) lung cancer screening coverage provides high-risk seniors with access to care that can save more lives than any cancer screening test in history, says a news release from the American College of Radiology. More...

Alzheimer's, Dementia & Mental Health

Anxiety Hastens Alzheimer's for Seniors with Mild Cognitive Impairment

Late-life depression has been identified as a significant risk marker for Alzheimer's

Nov. 10, 2014 – A new study has identified anxiety as a condition that can hasten the development of Alzheimer’s disease in people with mild cognitive impairment (MCI), who are at risk of slowly developing Alzheimer’s over a few years. Although this study focused on adults over age 54, the news may not be as distressing for senior citizens, who are considerably less likely than younger adults to suffer anxiety disorders. More...

 

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Medicare & Medicaid News

Medicare Dialysis Facility Compare Star Ratings Set to Debut in January

There are Star Ratings on Nursing Home Compare and Physician Compare; CMS plans applying Star Ratings to Home Health Compare and Hospital Compare in 2015

Nov. 10, 2014 - The latest addition to the “Medicare compare” websites – the Dialysis Facility Compare (DCF) Star Rating program - is expected to go live in January 2015. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has finalized the methodology for the program and is releasing previews of ratings to individual Medicare-participating dialysis facilities for review. More...

Medicare & Medicaid News

Medicare May Need to Expand Options for Behavioral Weight Loss Counseling

Broader range of health professionals needed provide weight loss counseling for senior citizens, others in Medicare

Nov. 7, 2014 - An important addition to the “eat less, move more” strategy for weight loss lies in behavioral counseling to help achieve these goals. But research on how primary care practitioners can best provide behavioral weight loss counseling to obese Medicare patients in their practices - as encouraged by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) - remains slim. More...

Health and Medicine for Seniors

Older Women Lead Millions in Not Getting Screened for Cervical Cancer

Most new cervical cancer cases occur among women who have never or rarely been screened, says CDC - women over 65 may not need Pap test

Nov. 6, 2014 - Despite evidence that cervical cancer screening saves lives, about eight million women ages 21 to 65 years have not been screened for cervical cancer in the past five years, with the older women the worst offenders, according to a new Vital Signs report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. More...

Caregiver & Elder Care News

End-of-Life Planning: Toward ‘A Beautiful Death’

Consumer Reports has released a guide to end-of-life planning for families – see video below

By Jenny Gold November 5, 2014

Nov. 6, 2014 - The American health care system is poorly equipped to care sensitively for patients at the end of life, a recent report from the Institute of Medicine found. But it is possible, through careful planning, for individuals to choose the kind of death they want. Consumer Reports has released a guide to end-of-life planning for families. The report offers tips for caregivers and individuals and profiles one man’s “beautiful death” at home. More...

Features for Senior Citizens

Seniors Should Not Forget Medical Records as Holiday Travel Approaches

Personal health records allow seniors to take control of their health files during holiday travels all over the world

By C. Arnold Curry, M.D., MBA & CEO of Medical Records Systems

Nov 6, 2014 - As thousands of senior travelers make plans to visit family this holiday season, they may not know that the top item to pack should be their electronic personal health record. Seniors should build an up-to-date electronic medical record before hitting the road, in addition to packing festive clothes and holiday gifts. More...

Aging & Longevity

Satisfaction with Life Increases with Age in English-Speaking World but Not Everywhere

Study highlights how different people across the world experience varying life-satisfaction levels and emotions as they age

Nov. 6, 2014 - In the U.S., Canada, the U.K., Ireland, Australia and New Zealand  researchers looking at life satisfaction scores found middle-age residents report the lowest levels of life satisfaction, which eventually bounces back up after age 54. This "U-shaped curve" that bottoms out between the ages of 45 and 54 was consistent in high-income, English speaking countries, but not other regions of the world. More...

Health and Medicine for Seniors

New Discovery Detects Most Damaging Age-Related Macular Degeneration

Retinal-scan analysis can predict which AMD patients may go blind

Nov. 5, 2014 - A new way to forecast which patients with age-related macular degeneration are likely to suffer from the most debilitating form of the disease has been found by Stanford University School of Medicine scientists. AMD is the leading cause of blindness and central vision loss among senior citizens older than 65. More...

Social Security News

Retirement Estimator at Social Security is Answer Again in Q&A

Nov. 4, 2014 - There are several important tools provided online by the Social Security Administration that can help senior citizens, and even those who have not reached their retirement age, in better planning their retirement. Maybe the most useful is the Retirement Estimator, which is the answer again, this time to a question in this week's Social Security Q&A about deciding when to retire. More...

Caregiver & Elder Care News

Seniors Want Doctors to Follow End-of-Life Wishes: Gerontological Society

Advance directives can benefit patients, families, and health care system; hold doctors accountable

Nov. 4, 2014 - Nearly one out of four senior Americans say that either they or a family member have experienced excessive or unwanted medical treatment, according to the latest issue of The Gerontological Society of America’s Public Policy & Aging Report (PP&AR), which goes on to show that Americans strongly support holding doctors accountable when they fail to honor patients’ end-of-life health care wishes. More...

Medicare & Medicaid News

Physicians, Others in Health Care Want Patients to Take More Responsibility for Their Care

‘…actions - or inaction - of patients should be considered in programs designed to improve care and patient outcomes’

By Tucker Sutherland, editor & publisher, SeniorJournal.com

Nov. 3, 2014 –An interesting twist has just been made in the national effort to improve healthcare – the doctors want the patients to step up and share some the responsibility. Keep in mind that when we talk about "patients," we are primarily talking about senior citizens. And, the health care world is not just composed to health care providers and patients. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services is the big ... Mor

Caregiver & Elder Care New

Nearly Half of Senior Citizens in America Need Help with Daily Routines

Growing need for improved community-based services and support for older Americans and their caregivers

By Milly Dawson

Nov. 4, 2014 - Nearly half of Americans age 65 and older, totaling about 18 million people, require help with routine daily activities like bathing, handling medications or meals. A new study in Milbank Quarterly reveals a growing need for improved services and support for older Americans, their spouses, their children and other "informal caregivers." More...

Advanced Dementia Patients Given Medications of Questionable Benefit, High Cost

Questionably medications account for more than one third of their medication expenditures

Nov. 3, 2014 – A nationwide study of 5046 patients with advanced dementia – mostly white females and more than half age 85 or older – has found that most nursing home residents with advanced dementia receive medications with questionable benefit that incur substantial associated costs. More...

 

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Medicare & Medicaid News

Money Retired Seniors Need to Pay for Health Care is Going Down

Medicare was not designed to cover all health care expenses; seniors have to pay deductibles for services, uninsured costs of prescription drugs

Nov. 3, 2014 – The amount of money senior citizens need to have available in retirement, just to cover health care costs, is in decline, says a new study by the nonpartisan Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI). The reason they found is the enhanced prescription drug coverage provided by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), often called “Obamacare.” More...

 

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Medicare & Medicaid News

Medicare Penalty for COPD Readmissions May Penalize Teaching Hospitals

Michigan U. study hypothesizes teaching hospitals may get most penalties for treating poor and worst cases

Nov. 2, 1024 - Last month, the federal government revealed that it will fine more than 2,600 hospitals in the coming year, because too many Medicare patients treated at these hospitals are ending up back in the hospital within 30 days of going home. Two new conditions have been added in this round of penalties: elective hip and knee replacement and chronic lung disease. More...

Health and Medicine for Seniors

Seniors with Heart Problems Need to Worry About NOT Getting Flu Shot

Those with cardiovascular problems probably most in need of a flu shot

By Tucker Sutherland, editor, SeniorJournal.com

Oct. 31, 2014 – When you have heart problems, as so many senior citizens do, it is natural to become concerned about things you put in your body – like vaccine to prevent flu. In this case, don’t worry, the Centers for Disease Control says what you should be worried about is catching the flu – that does increase the risk of a heart attack. There are even studies that say the flu shot may offer protection against heart attacks. More...