Elder Care Issues

Advice on tackling common health care issues affecting the senior population and resources to turn to for help.

AP: Nursing Homes Phasing Out Alarms To Reduce Falls

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The Associated Press: Nursing Homes Phasing Out Alarms To Reduce Falls
Alarms no longer go off when a resident shifts in bed or rises from a wheelchair at Oakwood Village Prairie Ridge in Madison. Nurses no longer place fall mats next to beds or lower beds to the floor when residents sleep. The changes, which took effect at the nursing facility in June, are part of a nationwide movement to phase out personal alarms and other long-used fall prevention measures in favor of more proactive, attentive care. Without alarms, nurses have to better learn residents’ routines and accommodate their needs before they try to stand up and do it themselves. (7/2)

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KHN: End-Of-Life Care Better For Patients With Cancer, Dementia: Study Finds

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About 60 percent of people with a relative dying of cancer or dementia said their relative got excellent end-of-life treatment, with about 80 percent saying the relative always got the care he or she wanted.

About 60 percent of people with a relative dying of cancer or dementia said their relative got excellent end-of-life treatment, with about 80 percent saying the relative always got the care he or she wanted.

Kaiser Health News: End-Of-Life Care Better For Patients With Cancer, Dementia: Study Finds

Kaiser Health News staff writer Shefali Luthra reports: “A new study offers surprising findings about end-of-life care — specifically, physicians tend to be more likely to accommodate the advanced-care wishes of patients with cancer or dementia than renal disease, congestive heart failure, pulmonary disease or frailty. “There’s been a lot of focus on end-of-life care for cancer,” said Melissa Wachterman, the study’s principal author and a physician at the VA Boston Healthcare System and the Boston-based Brigham and Women’s Hospital. “But most people don’t die of cancer. And the quality of end-of-life care for those dying of other conditions … is not as good.” The research was published online Sunday in JAMA Internal Medicine.” (Luthra, 6/27)

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NYT: Hearing Aid Prices Under Pressure From Consumer Electronics

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The consumer electronics industry is encroaching on the hearing aid business, offering products that are far less expensive and available without the involvement of audiologists or other professionals.

That is forcing a re-examination of the entire system for providing hearing aids, which critics say is too costly and cumbersome, hindering access to devices vital for the growing legions of older Americans. “The audiology profession is obviously scared, for good reason, right now,” said Abram Bailey, an audiologist and chief executive of Hearing Tracker, a consumer website. (Pollack, 4/20)

Read entire article from The New York Times.