Weekly Roundup

This Week in Senior Living News

Merry Christmas from

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It’s hard to believe that Christmas Eve is upon us! And just over a week left in 2011! Are we crazy or does it seem like we just rung in 2000 last week? Time goes on, that’s one certainty in life. But each year brings with it a new promise, new hopes and new accomplishments. This year we saw natural disasters, small and large scale, from small towns to big cities. We made some incredible breakthroughs in science and medical research. What will you remember 2011 as? The year health IT took the world by storm? The year of economic roller coasters? The year the Super Committee failed, or the year Medicare payments took a nosedive?

Whatever your memory is of this past year, take some time over the next few weeks and reflect on what’s happened to you in 2011. Did you lose a loved one? Have you failed to spend enough time with an aging loved one? Have you moved mom or dad to an assisted living facility? Have you fought with siblings over mom and dad’s care? Have you worn yourself ragged because you’re the sole caregiver for an aging loved one? (If so, have you asked for help? Taken care of yourself?) 2012 is a new year, a new leaf, and a chance to start fresh. So starting now, take a look at all those things and decide on one — just one — area you can make a difference in 2012.

Now on to the news of the week!

Aging News:

Competitive runners don’t become less efficient with aging, according to Competitor Network. In fact, a recent study shows that runners in their 60s are just as physiologically efficient as those in their 20s and 30s.

Some grandparents struggle to connect with their grandchildren, especially when the holiday season is one of the few times of the year they are able to spend time together. offers tips for grandparents on engaging grandchildren this holiday season (and possibly un-tethering them from their iPods and smart phones).

Senior Living News:

Joan London, one of our exceptional writers, has launched a blog series at!  Joan’s Journey: The Search for Senior Housing will be a first-person account of Joan’s search for senior living options so that she may be closer to loved ones. Read Joan’s first installment here and check out our blog post and feel free to comment there to get in touch with Joan.

Caregiver Stories and Advice:

Aging parents refuse care

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Here’s one to think about: If a parent refuses help, is the adult child guilty of elder abuse? Believe it or not, there’s a real court case addressing this very topic; a horrifying story that will unfortunately ring familiar for some caregivers reading it. What do you think of the verdict in this case? Did the caregivers do enough to force Johnnie to receive essential medical care? How much should an adult child press the issue?

We’re also curious to know your thoughts on the central issue here, and where a caregiver’s focus should lie. Should these children have forced their mother further to receive care to avoid breaking the law, or simply because it was in the patient’s best interest? Read the full story from AARP and let us know what you think in the comments.

Tech Roundup:

Uncle Sam is jumping on the health IT bandwagon. The feds are slated to spend $6.5 billion on health IT needs in 2016. Get the details from

Operations and On the Political Beat:

The fight against Alzheimer’s disease is taking front stage in the upcoming presidential race. MarketWatch has some details on Republican candidates’ stances on addressing the disease, funding research to prevent or slow the progression of Alzheimer’s and thus reducing the massive health care costs incurred by caregivers and the U.S. as a whole. The responses were solicited by USAgainstAlzheimer’s, a national advocacy campaign and network with the goal of stopping Alzheimer’s disease by 2020.

Congress is slowly starving the nation’s senior services, according Howard Gleckman, author of Caring for Our Parents. Read Gleckman’s full story at

Things that make you say, “Huh?” and our favorite unexpected news of the week:

Medicare doesn’t guarantee access to health care: It’s true. The premise behind Medicare is to provide seniors with affordable access to crucial health care needs, yet the program doesn’t actually force physicians to accept MC as payment. Therefore, some seniors still have difficulty obtaining necessary care because they aren’t able to find a participating provider. This isn’t news to those of us in the industry, but for many Americans, it comes as an unwelcome and sudden surprise.  The Washington Examiner takes a look at this issue.

Finally, I read frequently. Like most, I’m not a huge fan of the forced advertisements that create one more step for me to reach my destination on the web. That said, Forbes eases the pain a little by allowing you to skip the ad and displaying a cool thought of the day for your enjoyment while you wait. Now, my point: There was a great quote featured there the other day that happens to be a perfect closing to this week’s roundup.

“Older generations are living proof that younger generations survive their lunacy.”

~ Cullen Hightower.

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