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Thriving in Rhinebeck - on PANDA
View video clips from our 2nd annual Thriving in Rhinebeck Showcase of Services & Resources for Older Adults, held at Rhinebeck High School on November 5, 2016. Click on the "Read article" button above.
Rhinebeck Is Aging: Are We Prepared for Our Future?
First annual conference / discussion of a forthcoming series of events focused on issues of shared concern in our community, ranging from healthcare, home care services to housing opportunities, as recorded and viewable on PANDA:
R@H video on PANDA website!
Rhinebeck Is Aging 2016: Is Your Home Fit for Your Future? Adapt... or Move! View the 3-part recording of this community event sponsored by Rhinebeck at Home and co-sponsored by our host, Northern Dutchess Hospital. Click on the green button to visit the PANDA23 TV website, then scroll down to the videos.
Thriving in Rhinebeck -- on PANDA
Thriving in Rhinebeck: a Showcase of Services and Resources for Older Adults attracted close to 200 people to Rhinebeck High School on Saturday, Nov. 14. Co-sponsored by Rhinebeck at Home, the first-time event featured 40 exhibitors and included presentations and demonstrations on aging, memory sharpening, and exercise techniques. View the coverage by local station PANDA by clicking on the green READ ARTICLE button above.
Alan Chartock of WAMC talks with Nina Lynch
On April 8th's Vox Pop segment on WAMC radio, Nina Lynch of Rhinebeck at Home and Karl DeKeukelaere of Hudson Valley Home Matters talk about the aging in place movement and the role their "villages" are playing in the Hudson Valley. Listen to the entire one-hour segment!
It Takes a Special Village
The Observer's Arlene Wege interviews officers of Rhinebeck@Home and highlights the history and goals of this all-volunteeer organization, whose purpose is to implement social support programs and coordinate access to affordable, reliable services such as transportation, in-home services, and opportunities to attend cultural events.
All the work, half the pay
If you need home care, you may find it more challenging than you had thought, even if you're willing to pay out of pocket for it. Not only are home care workers in short supply -- those individuals committed to their work generally find themselves underpaid, underappreciated -- and even not even paid for their entire workday. Read more in this excellent piece of investigative reporting for Crains NY Business.
Under "Observation," Some Face Big Bills
NY Times' Paula Span, in her series on The New Old Age, highlights the potentially financially-damaging impact of being placed on "under observation" status in a hospital. Read this important article carefully!
Hearing Aids at the Mall? Congress Could Make It Happen
In the New Old Age series running in the New York Times, Paula Span outlines recent developments in the move toward making it possible for us to try out new hearing aids (all meeting newly established federal requirements) in a store, and at hugely lower prices than are available today through audiologists. "If you want assistance, you might pay an audiologist to provide customized services, like adjusting frequencies or amplification levels. But you won’t need to go through an audiologist-gatekeeper, as you do now, to buy hearing aids."
Planning to Age in Place? Find a Contractor Now
Paula Span reports for the NY Times' "The New Old Age" series on the practicalities of designing - or redesigning - your home according to principles of universal design so that access to and navigation of your living space "works" for everyone, even those who are wheelchair-bound. Less than 4 percent of all U.S. housing stock has entrances without steps, single-floor living, and wide hallways and doorways that can accommodate wheelchairs.
Love and Burnout: Caregivers, Too, Need Care
Constance Gustke of the New York Times writes compellingly about the emotional and financial drain caregivers may encounter, resulting in their needing care as well, both during and after their role as caregivers. Read more here.
Revival of the Reverse Mortgage
Years ago, reverse mortgages gained a reputation for been inappropriately promoted and sold to vulnerable older adults. More recently, regulatory changes and more responsible local community bankers have made these products worth a new look. Read more about reverse mortgages in this cautious article in the New York Times YOUR MONEY column by Ron Lieber.
Intergenerational project - PBS and The Atlantic
PBS ran an 8-minute segment on May 10 highlighting an intergenerational program involving pre-schoolers and residents of a senior nursing home facility in Seattle. The Atlantic also ran a story on the project; and a documentary film titled Present Perfect is due to be released in 2017. Click on the button to link to the stories.
In Palliative Care, Comfort Is the Top Priority
Paula Span writes about palliative care programs and explains why they should not be viewed as "giving up." Span notes: "Because most people with serious illnesses are older, seniors and caregivers should understand that palliative care offers more care as needed, not less. Unlike hospice, patients can use it at any point in an illness — many will 'graduate' as they recover — without forgoing curative treatment." Click above to read the story.
Circle Of Friends For The Dying
Here is what happens at a Death Cafe - people, often strangers, gather to eat cake, drink tea and discuss death. It is a discussion group rather than a grief support or counseling session.
To tell us more about Death Cafes in our region – WAMC welcomes: Barbara Sarah - Founder of the Circle of Friends for the Dying, which has sponsored 21 Death Cafes in Ulster County, and Laurie Schwartz, a Founder of Circle of Friends for the Dying. Click on button above to listen to the full segment on WAMC's Roundtable, May 19, 2015
Admitted to Your Bedroom
Daniela Lamas, MD, writes for the New York Times about hospital systems experimenting with a program to hospitalize people with certain diagnoses in their own homes. Heart failure, certain types of pneumonia, cellulitis, and exacerbations of emphysema can often be treated equally well at home, often at lower cost and with quicker recovery. The primary challenge is to be careful about evaluating the patient on the front end. Click above to read the full article.
What the Single Ladies Have Wanted for More Than a Century
Anna North writes for the NY Times Opinion Pages about how single people who relish their autonomy way want to have companionship without entering into a romantic relationship -- and look to cohousing for that purpose. Ms North writes that "removing some of the barriers to communal living would give America’s growing population of single people the opportunity, at least, to decide if living with other people works for them. It might also encourage Americans in general to think more creatively about our homes, our cities and our social networks." Read the full article by clicking on the button above.
FRONTLINE: Being Mortal
FRONTLINE follows renowned New Yorker writer and Boston surgeon Atul Gawande as he explores the relationships doctors have with patients who are nearing the end of life. In conjunction with Gawande's new book, "Being Mortal," the film explores how the medical profession can better help people navigate the final chapters of their lives with confidence, direction and purpose. Click READ ARTICLE to watch the program.
Book Discussion on The Age of Dignity
Ai-jen Poo talks about her book, The Age of Dignity, about the increase in the number of senior citizens in the U.S. and the ability of our caregiver system to handle it. Click READ ARTICLE to watch the CSPAN program.
The Village Effect
A new book by Shirley Pinker uses the term "The Village Effect" as a metaphor for the social contacts we all need as humans in order to thrive. Pinker notes that "150" is the number that comes up time and again in the types of social interactions that work smoothly. The village effect can deepen social ties and the in-person contact we all need to survive.
End-of-Life Care Needs Sweeping Overhaul
"Dying in America," a new report from the Institute of Medicine, found that our system of end-of-life care is largely broken and should be overhauled at almost every level. The report says the changes would produce significant cost savings that would help make health care more affordable. “If you meet their needs, treat their pain, treat their depression, get them some help in the house, your costs plummet,” said Dr. Diane E. Meier, a committee member and the director of the Center to Advance Palliative Care.
How to Avoid the Two Words that Cost Thousands in Medicare Bills
NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams reports on Medicare patients being put on hospital "observation" status rather than "admitted," and how being on "observation" can result in substantial costs being incurred out of pocket by the patient. For example, Medicare will not pay for rehab if the patient was classified as “observation status” when he/she received treatment at the hospital. Watch the video for tips from Dr. Ashish Jha of the Harvard School of Public Health, who explains what you can do to prevent this kind of billing issue.
U.S. Warns of Frauds Tied to Health Care Law
On Sept. 18, the White House reminded Medicare beneficiaries that they do not need to sign up through one of the new "insurance exchanges." Consumers were also warned about possible fraud by con artists taking advantage of the new insurance marketplaces being set up under President Obama’s health care law. A report from the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform noted “There are already reports from across the country that scam artists are attempting to impersonate navigators and assisters to steal credit card information and personally identifiable information in order to take advantage of massive confusion about Obamacare.”
Choices Give New Meaning to ‘Home, Sweet Home'
Fran Hawthorne of The New York Times writes about housing / living options available to people as they age, including group homes, “villages” of individual households and other hybrid arrangements.
For some seniors, a cultural shift and a vital volunteerism
The Boston Globe explores the phenomenon of "villages" and the variety of models among the 350+ existing organizations. “It’s about matching the village to the nature and culture of your community." Each village has its own character and structure...Some villages also function as local lobbying groups, advocating for public improvements like sidewalk curb cuts and other “age-friendly” policies. Most offer referrals, helping members connect with area businesses, care providers, and senior services. And for many, social activities, from book groups to lectures to museum visits, are a popular draw.
NPR: Sometimes It Takes a Village
This 3-part series by NPR's Ina Jaffe on the Village movement highlights a few of the very different "village" models in the U.S. Rhinebeck at Home is a proud -- and unique -- part of this phenomenon in which we older citizens help ourselves as we make our way through these transitional and occasionally challenging times.
Ashton Applewhite: “Old Person in Training”
Listen to this interview with Ashton Applewhite, author of This Chair Rocks: A Manifesto Against Ageism. She was one of our dynamic speakers at the 2016 national gathering of the Village to Village Network. Change attitudes - including perhaps some of your own! -- about aging.
Helping the Elderly Downsize
Kaya Laterman writes for the NY Times about the challenges - logistical and emotional - of downsizing and the help available from "senior move managers" who helped orchestrate over 100,000 moves nationwide last year. Interestingly, some people engage these specialists to help them remain in their home longer by sorting through and thinning out their living space. Learn more by clicking on the button above.
Where Are the Geriatricians?
Learn more about the outlook for improving geriatric medicine in this NY Times article. You'll even pick up a couple of useful tips, such as “Elevate your legs for 30 minutes before going to sleep and you’ll need to go to the bathroom during the night less often,” about the need to stay well hydrated, then having sleep disrupted by frequent trips to the bathroom. “Instead of iron pills, buy a cast-iron skillet, one of the best ways for the body to absorb iron.”
Stanley Blum talks about courage
Listen to 96-year-old Rhinebeck resident Stanley Blum, artist and poet, talk about "couraggio" -- courage -- the courage to face the chaos, ...the courage to face the unknown." He talks about his belated quest to know himself and the obligation of one generation "to speak to another to impart their knowledge."
Developed by the Dutchess County Department of Planning and Development, this checklist serves as an excellent outline of things to think about and plan for as you move through later life stages.
Retirees Turn to Virtual Villages for Mutual Support
Reporting on aging in place organizations continues to spread, with a new article in the New York Times on "virtual villages", which foster social connections through shared activities like potlucks and group trips.
Dr. Marc Agronin, a geriatric psychiatrist in Miami and author of “How We Age,” notes that “as people get older, they face the major dilemma of isolation. Having a local network of people to engage with opens up whole new worlds. It’s about discovering your strengths and the joy of living.”
AARP: Boomers may leave New York in droves
Rhinebeck at Home's Nina Lynch and Anne Brueckner attended an AARP-hosted event on the impact of the 50+ population on the state of New York, including (especially) the implications of large numbers of this population leaving the state for Florida and other supposedly better locales. A front-page article in the Poughkeepsie Journal noted: "Though they agreed with many points in the AARP survey, they said many seniors don't realize that moving to cheaper locations can pose new challenges, as well."
"I know that when people move to a place where they think it is going to be less costly to live," Lynch said, "they often discover they don't have the support system, and that they are lonely. It's really hard to make friends when you are older because we don't have those easy connections we had when we had kids."
Aging America: Seniors Helping Seniors
A 2-part news report by Al Jazeera America on the village movement shows activities in New Hampshire, where some seniors struggle to make it through winter on their own.
There's No Place Like Home
PBS’s Ray Suarez reports on how the village “aging in place” concept may help people retain their independence.
For Modern Retirees, There’s No Place Like Home
Keith Schneider writes for the New York Times about nonprofit service organizations (like Rhinebeck at Home) that provide rides, do errands and repairs, and facilitate social events and interaction among their dues-paying members. Builders, healthcare grups, technology gurus and even community planning boards, recognizing this trend, are taking action to facilitate the ability of people to live independently in their own homes as they age.
The Changing Lives of Women: Boomer Housemates Have More Fun
As part of the NPR series on the Changing Lives of Women, NPR's Julie Rovner looks at the long-term care conundrum. Group houses are becoming popular among some single baby boomers -- people born between 1948 and 1964 -- and not just for financial reasons. More than 1 in every 3 baby boomers is unmarried, and those unmarried boomers are disproportionately women. Who will take care of all these people when they're too old to care for themselves? Already, there's a small but apparently growing movement of boomer women forming group houses with their single peers.