Diabetes care, another bankruptcy in senior housing, detecting elder abuse, and hospice care


If you have diabetes, hypoglycemia is a big problem that doctors sometimes overlook.

A Texas retirement community chain just filed for bankruptcy.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau just published a manual for detecting financial abuse in the elderly.  It’s written for nursing home staff, but it’s pretty useful for anyone.

Tips for shopping for hospice care.

What is Hospice?

iStock_000001461778_LargeThe end of life is a topic that makes most people uncomfortable.  It’s not something that we like to talk about, and the word “hospice” is just another word that most people associate with death. While it’s true that hospice is a type of treatment that is only for patients in their last months of life, there are some things that distinguish hospice from other care:

Hospice is about keeping patients and their families comfortable.  Hospice was created to provide an alternative to traditional hospital passing.  The focus is not on prolonging life at all costs.  Instead, hospice nurses and physicians aim to ease patient suffering and help family members cope.  Compared to a hospital, where patients often receive invasive and painful medical procedures in an effort to avoid death, hospice patients receive medication and care with the sole purpose of decreasing suffering.

Hospice and palliative care are similar, but not quite the same thing.  Palliative care is a type of medicine designed to help patients deal with any severe illness.  Hospice, on the other hand, is specifically for people who have had a terminal diagnosis.

Hospice requires physician certification.  Because hospice is only for patients who are in their last six months of life, you have to have a doctor’s permission to be admitted to a hospice program.  Medicare, Medicaid, and private insurance cover hospice care in most cases. If you or a loved one are facing a terminal illness, talk to your physicians about how to manage pain, discomfort, and other problems.

Video games, hospice, home care agencies, and caregivers


Can video games be good for you?

The best question to ask when faced with deciding on hospice for a loved one: What would make his/her last days most comfortable?

Not all states require home care agencies to be licensed.  Check your state for specifics.

If you have specific opinions about the kind of care that you want at the end of your life, you’d better let your family members know.  A new study shows that most seniors don’t receive care based on what caregivers think is best for them.

tex playing video games” © 2005 RebeccaPollard, Attribution 3.0 Generic http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/



Copper & dementia, life spans, end of life treatments, and suicide


Can copper and dementia really be related?

Women are still living longer, but men are quickly catching up.

A hospice physician talks about end of life treatments.

Suicide among the elderly is a problem.

“PIPE” © 2013 Muhammad Ali, Attribution 3.0 Generic http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

Getting more care for less, long-term care policies, colonoscopies, and hospice

Penny from Heaven

Advice for penny-pinchers: How to get the most medical care for your buck.

The cost of long term care insurance policies is going up!

A Boomer gets a colonoscopy.

Hospice is apparently very difficult to get into nowadays.

Penny from Heaven” © 2008 Caitlinator, Attribution 3.0 Generic http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

Brain aging, end-of-life care in assisted living, brain games, and dementia


My favorite professor has a post out about how the brain ages.  Check it out.  He’s a great writer and scientist.

End-of-life care in assisted living isn’t the same as a hospital or a nursing home.

Brain games won’t do much to make you a memory champ, but doing something that is mentally stimulating helps.

This might be an interesting read: “I will Never Forget” is about a mother’s descent into dementia.

Photo courtesy of IsaacMao on Flickr.


Coffee & glaucoma, Alzheimer’s & the brain, hospice, and omega-3 fats


Yet another chapter in the war over coffee’s usefulness: coffee is associated with glaucoma. 

Alzheimer’s is a disease that impacts the way the brain functions; understanding its progression can help you deal with Alzheimer’s patients.

More Medicare patients choose a nursing home over hospice for end of life care.

Omega-3 fats might be a good way to slow the aging process.

Photo courtesy of dyobmit on Flickr.


Brain strength, assisted living costs, hospice, and robot caregivers


One of my former college professors posted an excellent article in Psychology Today about keeping your brain strong as you age.  Having read his books, I can tell you first-hand that he’s an excellent writer!  Go check it out.

The cost of assisted living rose 5% last year.

If you’re on Medicare, you can appeal end-of-life hospice decisions.

Would you like a robot to take care of you?  A new survey shows that most seniors don’t mind the idea.

Photo courtesy of Pasukaru76on Flickr.


Caregivers & discrimination, top nonprofit retirement communities, hospice & palliative care, and improving your hospital stay


The AARP says that family caregivers need workplace protections to avoid discrimination.

Ziegler and LeadingAge just released the list of the top 100 nonprofit senior living providers. The largest company has almost 19,000 apartments!

The difference between hospice and palliative care in a nutshell.

If you’re about to be in the hospital for a long time, here are some tips to help improve your stay.

Photo courtesy of Banalities on Flickr.