Senior Citizen Issues: Health
Articles and Resources
Date Fairness.com Resource Read it at: Mar 06, 2014 Pitfalls Seen in a Turn to Privately Run Long-Term Care
QUOTE: a closer look at Tennessee, widely cited as a model, reveals hidden pitfalls as the system of caring for the frail comes under the twin pressures of cost containment and profit motive. In many cases, care was denied after needs grew costlier — including care that people would have received under the old system. “The notion of prevention saving money in the long run only works if you actually provide care in the long run,”
New York Times May 21, 2011 Our Irrational Fear of Forgetting
QUOTE: The mere whiff of perceived memory loss can have terrible consequences in an insecure economy in which midlife workers are regularly (and illegally) laid off on account of their age. This epidemic of anxiety around memory loss is so strong that many older adults seek help for the kind of day-to-day forgetfulness that once was considered normal.
New York Times Apr 17, 2011 The Middle-Class Tax Trap
QUOTE: Asking a population that’s increasingly brown and beige to accept punishing tax rates while white seniors receive roughly $3 in Medicare benefits for every dollar they paid in (the projected ratio in the 2030s) promises to polarize the country along racial as well as generational lines.
New York Times Mar 03, 2011 Government Report Finds Elder Abuse on the Rise
QUOTE: Kay Brown, director of education, work force and income security at the accountability office, testified that state agencies also were seeing increasingly complex cases involving multiple types of abuse. Yet funding for state-level adult protective services agencies... is not keeping pace.
New York Times Mar 18, 2010 Stressful but Vital: Picking a Nursing Home (Patient Money)
QUOTE: Finding a good nursing home takes research and perseverance...Unfortunately, the typical search for a nursing home is made under duress.
New York Times Mar 12, 2010 Deciding on Care for Elderly Parents in Declining Health
QUOTE: ...I offer guidelines and considerations that can help you make an informed — if not always easy — decision about what type of housing will support your parent’s needs, without bankrupting the family in the process.
New York Times Oct 28, 2009 Critics: DEA crackdown denies some patients pain medication
QUOTE: Heightened efforts by the Drug Enforcement Administration to crack down on narcotics abuse are producing a troubling side effect by denying some hospice and elderly patients needed pain medication...
Washington Post Oct 09, 2009 Should Medicare Benefits Start Later in Life? (Economix)
QUOTE: Instead of heeding the frightening messages emanating from self-styled “protectors” of Medicare, such as Ms. [Betsy] McCaughey, the elderly might search their souls on the moral platform for the political economy of sharing in a civilized society.
New York Times Jul 06, 2009 States seek tests for older drivers
QUOTE: A looming "gray wave" of Baby Boomers expected on the nation's highways over the next two decades has prompted states to launch programs aimed at allowing seniors to keep driving as long as they can without endangering themselves or others.
USA TODAY Jul 01, 2009 Tempting Targets: How Can We Protect Against Elder Abuse During a Down Economy?
QUOTE: The numbers show a spike in elder abuse nationwide, and experts say it’s driven by the economic stress of gutted investments, lost jobs, slashed salaries and foreclosed homes.
AARP Jun 01, 2009 AARP.org The Law: Waiving Mandatory Arbitration Clauses in Nursing Home Contracts
QUOTE: Many [nursing home] facilities include provisions requiring that residents and their families accept binding arbitration and forgo use of the court system to resolve a wide range of disputes.
AARP Nov 13, 2008 The New Old Age: Rationing Health Care
QUOTE: The biggest change in the last 40 years, Mr. Callahan said to me, is that there are no limits. There's nothing we can't do for an old person, and there's a lot of pressure to do it. This is considered progress, and its considered ageism to be skeptical. But we can't go on this way. It's unaffordable. And it's the hardest dilemma in our society because theres no good way to deal with it other than saying no.
New York Times Sep 10, 2008 Naughty Nursing Homes: Is it time to let the elderly have more sex?
QUOTE: Sexual desire may wane with age, but it doesn't disappear. For Slate's 2007 "Sex issue," Daniel Engber reported on sexual expression in nursing homes—a thorny issue for doctors worried about whether their senile patients are capable of informed consent.
Slate Mar 03, 2008 Despite City Law, Few Assisted Living Centers Licensed
QUOTE: Most assisted living centers in the District have not been licensed or inspected eight years after the D.C. Council mandated government oversight of the facilities ...As a result, consumer advocates say, some of the District's most vulnerable residents have been left at greater potential risk for abuse and neglect...
Washington Post Dec 17, 2007 For Recipients of Medicare, the Hard Sell
QUOTE: Such experiences help explain why Ms. Barksdale and some of her neighbors here in eastern Mississippi are wary of the sales pitches they are now receiving again. Many said they had been tricked into enrolling in private Medicare plans, sometimes without realizing it.
New York Times Nov 19, 2007 Study Finds Higher Costs for Caregivers of Elderly
QUOTE: The survey was conducted by the National Alliance for Caregiving, a research and policy organization, and Evercare, a division of the UnitedHealth Group, which coordinates long-term care for 150,000 clients. The report urges government assistance for family caregivers, whether through tax deductions, tax credits or other stipends.
New York Times Oct 09, 2007 Aging and Gay, and Facing Prejudice in Twilight
QUOTE: Elderly gay people like Ms. Donadello, living in nursing homes or assisted-living centers or receiving home care, increasingly report that they have been disrespected, shunned or mistreated in ways that range from hurtful to deadly, even leading some to commit suicide.
New York Times Oct 07, 2007 Medicare Audits Show Problems in Private Plans
QUOTE: Tens of thousands of Medicare recipients have been victims of deceptive sales tactics and had claims improperly denied by private insurers that run the system’s huge new drug benefit program and offer other private insurance options encouraged by the Bush administration...
New York Times Sep 11, 2007 Nursing home industry still segregated, new report says
QUOTE: The study, out in the September/October issue of Health Affairs, says that 60% of blacks in nursing homes were concentrated in less than 10% of facilities — typically ones that had been cited for providing substandard care.
USA TODAY Jun 19, 2007 States Face Decisions on Who Is Mentally Fit to Vote
QUOTE: Rhode Island is among a growing number of states grappling with the question of who is too mentally impaired to vote. The issue is drawing attention for two major reasons: increasing efforts by the mentally ill and their advocates to secure voting rights, and mounting concern by psychiatrists and others who work with the elderly about the rights and risks of voting by people with conditions like Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.
New York Times May 16, 2007 Abuses in Enrollment Tactics Found for Private Medicare
QUOTE: Insurance agents in at least 39 states used illegal or unethical tactics to sell private Medicare plans, in some cases enrolling the dead and mentally incompetent, impersonating Medicare representatives, and using personal information stolen from federal records, according to interviews and documents released to Congress.
Washington Post May 07, 2007 Hard Sell Cited as Insurers Push Plans to Elderly
QUOTE: Proponents of private plans say they are indisputably good for many older Americans because they coordinate care and may offer extra benefits, like discounts on eyeglasses, hearing aids and dental care. But federal officials said that the fastest-growing type of Medicare Advantage plan generally does not coordinate care, does not save money for Medicare and has been at the center of marketing abuses.
New York Times Apr 22, 2007 Oversight of Nursing Homes Is Criticized
QUOTE: Congress established stringent standards for nursing homes in 1987. In 1998, the G.A.O. reported that “homes can repeatedly harm residents without facing sanctions.” Since then, President Bill Clinton, President Bush and the nursing home industry have announced many initiatives to improve care. But in its new report, the accountability office says that little seems to have changed...
New York Times Mar 06, 2007 Rx for Trouble: Inside the Steroid Sting: SI's Luis Fernando Llosa and L. Jon Wertheim, on the scene for the Florida raids, continue to report on the ongoing investigation that promises to rock sports
QUOTE: ...investigators contend that the Palm Beach Rejuvenation Center (PBRC) -- and dozens of so-called antiaging or wellness centers like it -- is a vital component in a massive illegal distribution network that enabled customers to place orders over the Internet for performance-enhancing drugs, including steroids and human growth hormone (HGH).
CNN (Cable News Network) Feb 07, 2007 New no-smoking frontier: condos and apartments: Seniors are leading the way in the new battle to ban smoking from communal environments.
QUOTE: Smoke-free policies in private dwellings are also taking hold because state and federal laws do not protect smokers in the same way that they protect people from discrimination based on race, ethnicity, and national origin, say experts. But banning a legal behavior in someone's own home is an intrusion of privacy that could set a dangerous precedent that, taken to extremes, could allow government to regulate too much in private life, opponents say.
Christian Science Monitor Jul 20, 2006 Medical and Ethical Questions Raised on Deaths of Critically Ill Patients
QUOTE: Experts in medicine and ethics have many questions about the accusations...that a doctor and two nurses used lethal injections to kill four critically ill patients in a flooded New Orleans hospital after Hurricane Katrina.
New York Times Jun 30, 2006 Medicaid Rule Called A Threat To Millions: Proof of Citizenship Needed for Benefits
QUOTE: A Medicaid rule takes effect tomorrow that will require more than 50 million poor Americans to prove their citizenship or lose their medical benefits or long-term care. Under the rule, intended to curb fraud by illegal immigrants...unintended consequence of harming several million U.S. citizens who, for a variety of reasons, will not be able to produce the necessary paperwork.
Washington Post May 13, 2006 GOP Wavers On Penalties In Medicare Drug Plan
QUOTE: key Republicans are examining ways to remove or reduce financial penalties the Bush administration plans to charge people who try to join the program after the enrollment cutoff...
Washington Post Nov 27, 2005 Insurers' Tactics in Marketing Drug Plan Draw Complaints
QUOTE: ...officials say they have received scores of complaints about the aggressive tactics used by some insurance companies and agents to market Medicare's new prescription drug benefit.
New York Times Nov 18, 2005 The Poor May Be Left Out In Medicare Drug Transition
QUOTE: Millions of low-income older Americans may be temporarily unable to get their prescription medications as they enroll in the new Medicare drug benefit....Advocates are worried that without a smooth transition some recipients could lack access to crucial drugs for days or weeks.
Washington Post Oct 16, 2005 Hear the Complaints: Customers Say Aids Don't Work, Cost Too Much and Aren't Rated
QUOTE: ...hearing aids did allow them to live normal lives again. But more of them had complaints about steep prices, models that didn't work right, too-short money-back guarantee periods and general confusion about which hearing aid they needed. A common theme: They were sick and tired of hearing -- when they could hear -- that their hearing aids needed yet another adjustment.
Washington Post Jul 07, 2003 Report Criticizes Federal Oversight of State Medicaid
QUOTE: Congressional investigators found "medical and physical neglect" of some Medicaid recipients..."States prepare good plans of care for Medicaid recipients, but there's no follow-through"...
New York Times Apr 07, 2003 Drivers not telling doctors of seizures
QUOTE: Some report concealing episodes because they don't want to lose their licenses, a survey finds.
Los Angeles Times Mar 22, 2003 Elderly Women Will Bear Brunt of Medicaid Cuts
QUOTE: Women--who live longer and are usually poorer in old age--will suffer the most as a result of drastic cuts to state and federal health care programs for the elderly and disabled.
Women's eNews Mar 13, 2003 Boycott of Glaxo urged by group of Illinois officials
QUOTE: An influential group of Illinois politicians wants to retaliate against GlaxoSmithKline PLC for trying to block senior citizens from purchasing cheaper drugs through Canadian companies.
Chicago Tribune Feb 16, 2003 Abuse of Elderly Women on the Rise
QUOTE: Women--who outlive men and are more vulnerable to sexual assault and domestic violence--are increasingly victims of elder abuse and neglect.
Women's eNews Jan 28, 2003 Treatment: A Cancer Regimen Abandoned
QUOTE: Doctors treating breast cancer patients often fail to use chemotherapy as frequently as federal guidelines recommend, especially when patients are older, a study reports.
New York Times Jul 28, 2002 Get a Divorce
QUOTE: I am considering a 'Medicaid divorce' (that is, in name only) so [my husband] can receive treatment without running through my modest savings...Is such a divorce ethical?
New York Times Mar 17, 2002 Many Doctors Say They Are Refusing Medicare Patients
QUOTE: For the first time, significant numbers of doctors are refusing to take new Medicare patients, saying the government now pays them too little to cover the costs of caring for the elderly.
New York Times Jan 22, 2002 A Fiscal Fantasy
QUOTE: A case in point....That shrieking you hear is the sound of Medicare patients being denied coverage to make room for tax cuts. And the chest-thumping you hear is the sound of an administration trying to prevent any rational discussion of the fiscal mess its tax plan has created.
New York Times Jul 22, 2001 Even Most Generous Drug Plan May Be Disappointing to Elderly
QUOTE: But even the most generous [health] benefits now under consideration will fall far short of what many of the elderly expect...
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