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News of the Week
Observations About Some Things That Caught My Eye
Caregiver Support Service Programs: Are They Worth It?
$265B worth of care for Medicare beneficiaries soon could shift from facilities to home, report finds
McKnight’s - Up to $265 billion worth of care services for Medicare fee-for-service and Medicare Advantage beneficiaries could move from traditional facilities to the home by 2025. This is according to a new report from management consulting firm McKinsey & Co.
It marks a three- to four-fold increase in the cost of care being delivered at home today. Consumer preferences are accelerating the push to home, and growing incentives across the healthcare industry are encouraging the shift.
Observation - I have always maintained that aging in place is the way to go as long as you have the support services. That is why I am a big fan of P.A.C.E. programs. Also, we must have the social pieces of this nailed because social isolation is a huge issue.
The Pandemic Has Made Many Seniors Less Active
From NYT - Many health experts are worried about worsening physical conditioning and mobility among older adults since Covid-19 upended the daily routine. Recent research indicates that many of those who had mild to moderate infections, even some who have managed to avoid the virus altogether, may be suffering functional declines.
Observation - there are a lot of obvious factors that have made us couch potatoes during Covid. The problem has been the actual recovery when you are not sure if or when the pandemic will end. People are emerging in general more fearful and hesitant. That is why many public places are still dormant and even gyms have not bounced back. So it is on each of us to figure out a way to stay active and moving.
16 states file new lawsuit against healthcare worker COVID vaccine mandate
The 16-state coalition, led by Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry, on Friday filed a complaint with the U.S. District Court of the Western District of Louisiana seeking to stop the rule’s enforcement in the state before the next compliance deadline goes into effect next week.
Observation - I am continuously amazed that even though the highest court in the land upheld the mandate, you can still have the hutzpah to try again, and again, and again. Yes, I know. People cry staffing is impacted. But guess what, so is sales and marketing. I am not putting mom or dad in any place where staff has not been fully vaccinated. Get over it.
Study unveils ‘silent epidemic’ of loneliness among older women during pandemic
McKnight’s - Overall rates of loneliness in older women have increased during the pandemic and are tied in part to the disruption of social connections, a new study reveals.
The findings come from an examination of healthcare data from more than 27,000 women aged 71 to 104 who were surveyed for the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI). Severe loneliness was reported by 19% of the women from February to October 2020, compared to 10% of respondents surveyed between 2014 and 2016.
Observation - I am in the process of applying for a grant to fund Sage Stream. We are a vital connection to seniors and one solution in this loneliness crisis. But we can’t fully launch until our platform is built. Can you help us? Here is a link to our Go Fund Me Page. Thanks.
Verma: Value-based care is the future of healthcare
McKnight’s - It’s nothing but up for the Medicare Advantage program, Seema Verma, former administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, predicted Tuesday.
Verma was not shy about expressing enthusiasm for value-based care in general. She said she is confident the expansion of home- and community-based services will happen in the context of value-based care. One of the advantages of value-based care is insurance companies are in charge so they can be more creative, flexible and experimental with offerings.
“By 2026, we’ll run out of money,” she noted of traditional Medicare fee-for-service. “The path forward is value-based care.”
Observation - not for nothing but yeah, yeah, yeah. Do you know how many years, maybe decades the health care industry has talked about value based care and being paid for quality? A lot. Bottom line, most of health care runs on fee for service and providers like it that way! That is why little has changed.
Alzheimer’s: The sleeping position that slashes your risk of developing dementia
From The Sun - Researchers at Stony Brook University found sleeping on your side is the most efficient at removing brain waste.
Dr Helene Benveniste said: "It appears that we have adapted the lateral sleep position to most efficiently clear our brain of the metabolic waste products that built up while we are awake.
"The study therefore adds further support to the concept that sleep subserves a distinct biological function of sleep and that is to 'clean up' the mess that accumulates while we are awake.
"Many types of dementia are linked to sleep disturbances, including difficulties in falling asleep.
"It is increasing acknowledged that these sleep disturbances may accelerate memory loss in Alzheimer's disease.
"Our finding brings new insight into this topic by showing it is also important what position you sleep in."
Observation - Hey, I’ll go with the science. It’s not the position I start in every night but is usually the one I go to eventually.
Loneliness can triple risk of dementia
Researchers at New York University’s Grossman School of Medicine said older people under the age of 80 who reported being lonely had a higher 10-year risk of dementia than those who said they weren’t lonely. Loneliness also was associated with worse neurocognitive markers, which suggested early onset of the disease.
Observation - Being alone and being lonely are two different things. As one senior noted - “As long as I am part of a community, whether that is on a campus or online, then I am staying healthy.” That is why services such as Sage Stream are so important for engagement.
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