Monthly Archives: May 2013

The “Best Friends Approach” in Alzheimer’s Care

People with Alzheimer’s don’t just need care; they need best friends, suggests dementia-care expert David Troxel. In Los Altos, CA, he recently explained his “best friends approach,” which a memory-care community there is incorporating. The Los Altos Town Crier reports:

According to Troxel, elements of a quality dementia-care experience include purposeful chores, creative activities, animals, conversation, incorporating the life story, exercise, music, being outside, learning and growth, and laughter.

When Troxel trains …Read more ›

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Quick Explanations of Medicare A, B, C and D

Medicare can be confusing for people who have had it for years, much less for children of aging parents who are suddenly thrown into this world. So if you’re still not clear on what the different main parts of Medicare are, here’s a quick guide from Irene Card, a health insurance professional. She writes at

Here is how Medicare works: Medicare Part A covers you at the hospital. Medicare Part …Read more ›

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Experts: When Elderly Parents Move In, They Need a Life Too

If you’re considering having an elderly parent move in with you, there are lots of things to think about: where they’ll get health care, whether your house needs accessibility modifications, how you’ll cover extra expenses. But one thing you might not have thought about yet is will your parent be bored?

In an article at the Fox Business website about multigenerational living, geriatric care manager Suzanne Modigliani advises asking yourself, “What …Read more ›

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On-Staff Doctors Becoming More Common in Nursing Homes

More and more nursing homes have doctors on staff these days, reports Senior Housing News. And always-available physicians may help keep residents out of the hospital:

About 45% of hospitalizations among skilled nursing facility residents who are Medicare beneficiaries are potentially avoidable and result in billions of dollars of costs, according to research from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).

Five conditions—pneumonia, congestive heart failure, urinary tract infections, dehydration, and …Read more ›

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Rejected for Aid and Attendance Pension? Don’t Do What the VA Says.

If your Aid and Attendance claim is denied, ignore the VA’s instructions for appeal, advises The New Old Age.

In part two of an ongoing series about the Aid and Attendance pension for veterans, the blog advises that if you do what the denial letter says, “that may only bring you years more of delays.”

The letter says you can file a formal appeal, but if you do that, …Read more ›

Nursing Homes: What Is “Person-Centered Care”?

Have you heard of the “person-centered care” philosophy some nursing homes are embracing? It’s changing the way these facilities are run. But what does it actually involve?

Basically, incorporating person-centered care means creating “a personalized environment that is targeted toward an individual’s likes, preferences and needs,” explains J. Emmett Reed, the executive director of the Florida Health Care Association. In an editorial at, the website for a Lakeland, FL, newspaper, …Read more ›

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Report: Assisted Living Industry “Weary” of Discounts

For a while now, assisted living communities have been offering deals to entice people to move in.

Reporting on the Assisted Living Federation of America’s recent conference in Charlotte, NC, the Observer notes that the price is high for assisted living—an average of $3,022 per month for a one-bedroom apartment, not including certain care fees. But pressure to keep units rented is also high.

That’s why communities in recent years have offered price …Read more ›

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Good Assisted Living Activities Can Be As Simple As Gardening

Finding a good assisted living community is about more than finding a nice place to live. For one thing, the community should offer fulfilling activities that keep your loved one engaged—preferably, activities that fit your loved one’s unique personality and experiences.

At The Huffington Post, Marguerite Manteau-Rao, a social worker who specializes in dementia care, shares an example. In an article about how to help a parent transition to assisted …Read more ›

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What Happens When Veteran Dies Before Special Pension Is Approved

Just because the VA says you’re out of luck doesn’t mean you really are.

The Aid and Attendance pension helps many veterans pay for long-term care. But the application process for this benefit is long and frustrating. The New Old Age talks about this in a recent post and points out that many veterans die before their application is approved. However, that doesn’t mean the family can’t get any money—even if the …Read more ›

Elderly Parents Refuse Help? Ask This Simple Question.

It can be frustrating when an elderly parent needs help at home but refuses it. What to do?

Take a breath, and find the answer to a simple question: Why? That’s what Judy Santamaria, director of family caregiver support at Visiting Nurse Service of New York, says in an article at The Huffington Post:

Try to understand the reasons for your loved one’s resistance. Is it a fear of dependence, loss of …Read more ›

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