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The e-Newsletter of the Geriatric Social Work Initiative (GSWI)
Volume 7, Issue 1
January 23, 2008
Welcome to Ripples, an e-newsletter designed to keep interested deans and directors, faculty members, students, practitioners and others informed about the work of the Geriatric Social Work Initiative (GSWI). We welcome your feedback and encourage you to contribute any story ideas, stories, resources, news and other content to subsequent issues of the newsletter. To make a contribution, please contact Joe Hayes at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have been forwarded this newsletter by a colleague and would like to subscribe, please reply to this e-mail and type the word “subscribe” in the subject line. Please be sure to visit our website at www.gswi.org.
Hartford Doctoral Fellows: February 1, 2008
Hartford Faculty Scholars: February 1, 2008
In this Issue...
Research & News
Association for Gerontology in Higher Education Conference
The AGHE Annual Meeting and Education Leadership Conference will be held February 21-24, in Baltimore, Maryland. This year’s theme will focus on “Disciplinary Convergence: The Nexus of Gerontology and Geriatrics Education.” The goal is to focus on interdisciplinary interactions, the area in which gerontology and geriatrics come together for the enhancement of quality of life of older individuals. To learn more about this conference, click here.
International Conference on Aging, Disability and Independence
The International Conference on Aging, Disability and Independence (ICADI) takes place in St. Petersburg, Florida, February 21-23, 2008 at the Hilton-St. Petersburg. This year’s theme is titled, “Advancing Technology and Services to Promote Quality of Life” and will focus on approaches to support people as they age in maintaining independence in daily living at home, at work and in the community. To learn more about this conference, click here.
19th Annual NAPSA Conference
The National Adult Protective Services Association announces its annual conference, in collaboration with the Illinois Department on Aging, August 26-29, 2008 at the Sheraton Chicago Hotel and Towers in Chicago, Illinois. This year’s theme centers on “APS: Advocating, Protecting and Serving Vulnerable Adults.” To learn more about this conference, click here.
RESEARCH & NEWS
Slow Down the Aging Clock: Benefits of Yoga
Interested in learning alternative ways that slow down Father Time’s aging clock? This article describes some benefits of yoga, including reducing arthritis, rheumatism, incontinence, and high blood pressure for seniors. In particular, this article recommends common yoga poses, designed for the elderly population. To learn more, click here.
To Screen or Not to Screen? Experts Debate Mass Testing of Alzheimer’s Disease.
One in seven Americans over age 71, about 3.4 million, have dementia. The majority, 2.4 million, have Alzheimer’s disease, according to a recently published study funded by the National Institute on Aging. The Alzheimer’s Foundation of America, a nonprofit advocacy group, endorses memory tests for all older Americans, while other experts worry that mass screening could do more harm than good by giving false reassurances to some and causing others needless worry. To learn more about the debate, click here.
Relatives of Parkinson’s Patients Risk Depression
Immediate relatives (brother, sister, mother, father, son or daughter) of patients with Parkinson’s disease are at increased risk of developing depression and anxiety disorders, especially if the disease develops before the age of 75, according to a recent report. To learn more, click here.
Tips to Prevent Adverse Drug Events in Older Adults
Adverse drug events are more common in older adults because they are prescribed more drugs and are affected differently by these drugs than their younger counterparts. A review article written by Tufts University School of Medicine clinicians, published in American Family Physician, summarizes steps that physicians and other healthcare providers can take to avoid overuse, misuse, and underuse of medication in older adults. To learn tips, click here.
The Potential Benefits of Animals and Health
The Delta Society, a non-profit that aims to improve human health through service and therapy animals, summarizes previous research linking the presence of companion animals to changes in physical or mental health status. To learn more about previous findings of this alternative method, click here.
More Facts on Social Work
- Did you know that according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the need for social workers is expected to grow twice as fast as any other occupation, especially in gerontology, home healthcare, substance abuse, private social service agencies, and school social work?
- Did you also know that there are more than 170 social workers in national, state, and local elected office, including two U.S. Senators and four U.S. Representatives? To learn more facts about social work, click here.
Nursing Home Citations Climb 22%
More nursing homes are being cited for serious violations as inspectors face increasing pressure to crack down on dangerous conditions. From 2000 through 2006, the number of citations for putting patients in “immediate jeopardy” increased 22%, according to records from the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which regulates nursing homes. This increase came as many states stepped up nursing home inspections. To learn more, click here.
Food Guide Pyramid for Older Adults
Tufts University researchers have updated their Food Guide Pyramid for Older Adults to correspond with the USDA food pyramid, now known as MyPyramid. The Tufts version is specifically designed for older adults and has changed in appearance and content. The Modified MyPyramid for Older Adults continues to emphasize nutrient-dense food choices and the importance of fluid balance, but has added additional guidance about forms of foods that could best meet the unique needs of older adults and about the importance of regular physical activity. To learn more about the older adults food pyramid, click here.
Response to Elder Abuse Varies Widely Across States
Every year, an estimated 2.1 million older Americans are victims of physical, psychological or other forms of abuse, according to the American Psychological Association. Congress says the number could be closer to 5 million. But the nation’s safety net for seniors is not nearly as good as it is for children. A survey of all 50 states conducted by The Providence Journal over the past several months shows that even though most states have mandatory reporting laws for elder abuse, fewer than half of them have statewide, 24-hour-a-day hot lines to record complaints and offer immediate response. To learn more, click here.
Geriatric Care Intervention Appears to Provide Some Benefits for Low-Income Seniors
A home-based geriatric care program for low-income seniors resulted in higher-quality medical care, improvement in quality of life and fewer emergency department visits, but did not appear to prevent decline in physical functioning, according to a study in the December 12th issue of JAMA. To learn more about geriatric care and its benefits, click here.
Hartford Doctoral Fellows Pre-Dissertation Award Program
The Hartford Doctoral Fellows Pre-Dissertation Award Program, a component of the nationwide Geriatric Social Work Initiative, will introduce you to the world of gerontological research and give you a jump start in taking on a leadership role in this burgeoning field. Application deadline is May 1st. If you’re a social work doctoral student seeking a direction that will fully engage your talents and satisfy your passion to make a difference, click here.
CSWE Gero-Ed Center CDI Program: Gero Curricular Chance Funding Available
The CSWE Gero-Ed Center announces funding for a new, 3-year Cycle 2 Curriculum Development Institute (CDI) Program, July 1, 2008-June 30, 2011. Applications are welcome from all CSWE-accredited BSW, MSW, and combined BSW/MSW programs that have not already participated in the Cycle 1 CDI Program (2004-2007) or the Geriatric Enrichment Program (GeroRich, 2001-2004). For additional program and application details, review the Request for Proposals (RFP) and Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), available on the CDI Program Web page, http://www.gero-edcenter.org/CDI. The application deadline is April 15, 2008.
CSWE Gero-Ed Center BEL Program: Funding Exclusively for BSW Programs
The CSWE Gero-Ed Center has just released the RFP for its new funding opportunity—the BSW Experiential Learning (BEL) Program. This unique program funds faculty to design positive learning experiences for their students to interact with older adults, which is a strategy intended to recruit students to gerontological placements and careers. It is available only to BSW programs in order to reach students early in their academic careers. The Gero-Ed Center encourages all eligible BSW programs to apply for this new program. Visit the BEL Program web page at www.Gero-EdCenter.org to learn more and request an application. If you have questions after visiting the website, please email the CSWE Gero-Ed Center at Gero-EdCenter@cswe.org. Application deadline is May 16, 2008.
Relatives as Parents Program
The Brookdale Foundation has announced a new funding opportunity for the Relatives as Parents program. It is designed to encourage and promote the creation or expansion of services for grandparents and other relatives who have taken on the responsibility of surrogate parenting due to the absence of the parents. The program awards seed grants of $10,000 over a two-year period in two categories: local agencies and state public agencies. For more information, click here.
Movie Review: “The Savages” Captures Emotions of Caring for Aging Parents
The Savages portrays an all-too-common dilemma: after drifting apart emotionally and geographically over the years, two siblings Wendy (Laura Linney) and Jon (Best Actor, Philip Seymour Hoffman) must band together to care for an elderly parent (Philip Bosco) with dementia and failing health. Released to a limited audience in November, many critics have placed this film on their list of top movies of 2007. To watch the trailer, click here. To learn what others are saying, click here.
New and Updated Data in FCA’s Caregiving Across the States Interactive Database
The National Center on Caregiving at Family Caregiver Alliance (FCA) announces the addition of new and updated data in its online resource, Caregiving Across the States. The database includes a separate profile for each state. Profiles contain the state’s background characteristics related to caregiving and aging, as well as information on publicly-funded caregiver support programs. To view this resource, click here.
Mapping the Growth of Older Americans: Seniors and Boomers in the Early 21st Century
The Brookings Institute provides an excellent resource examining the changing size, location, and characteristics of America’s seniors (65+) and pre-senior (55-64) populations. To learn more, click here.
Evidence-Based Geriatric Nursing Protocols for Best Practice
Edited by Elizabeth Capezuti, et al., this third edition brings another level of depth and sophistication to understanding the best practices for assessment, interventions, and anticipated outcomes in our care of the older adults. Evidence-Based Geriatric Nursing Protocols for Best Practice is intended to bring the most current, evidence-based protocols known to experts in geriatric nursing to the audience of students, both graduate and undergraduate, practitioners, clinicians, and nursing leaders. To view the list of chapter contents, click here.
Statistical Abstract of the U.S.
The United States Census Bureau has updated its data sets on December 20th, 2007. To view the latest Statistical Abstract, click here.
National Long Term Care Ombudsmen Resource Center
An Ombudsman is an advocate for residents of nursing homes, board and care homes, and assisted living. Ombudsmen provide information about how to find a long-term care facility and what to do to get quality care. An ombudsman assists residents and families in voicing and resolving quality of care and quality of life complaints. To access contact information for your state ombudsman, click here.
Tips to Make Your Printed Health Materials Senior Friendly
Making Your Printed Health Materials Senior Friendly is a new publication from the National Institute on Aging, part of the National Institutes of Health. The tip sheet offers suggestions for how to write and design health information to accommodate cognitive and physical changes that often accompany old age. It provides specific examples and includes resources for more information. Print copies of this resource are free and available in bulk while supplies last. It is also available online. To learn how to prepare public outreach materials for your older audiences, click here.
Elder Abuse Prevention: Emerging Trends and Promising Strategies
Written by Lisa Nerenberg, MSW, MPH, in an engaging and easy to read style, this resource helps practitioners, researchers, and advocates in the fields of aging to understand and appreciate the rich, if sometimes discordant, patchwork of theory and practice that defines the field of elder abuse prevention. It offers specific examples of how agencies, coalitions, courts, communities, tribes, and states can improve their response to elder abuse in an easy to navigate format. To learn more or to see the table of contents, click here.
The First of Many Elder Protection Courts?
The jurisdiction of Alameda, California (located near Oakland, CA) is the only court in the country that handles civil and criminal complaints involving elderly victims in the same central location—the Elderly Protection Court. Founded by Judge Julie Conger in 2002, with the help of a grant from the California Judicial Council, the Elder Protection Court seeks to accommodate and speed up the process for elderly victims. To learn more about this one-of-a-kind program and how it might serve as a model for the rest of the nation, click here.
CBO Long Term Budget Outlook
The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released the Long Term Budget Outlook before the Committee on the Budget of the U.S. House of Representatives. In the absence of significant change in policy, rising costs for health care and the aging of the U.S. population will cause federal spending to grow rapidly. CBO projects that under current law, federal spending on Medicare and Medicaid measured as a share of GDP will rise from 4 percent today to 12 percent in 2050 and to 19 percent in 2082. To view the CBO Long Term Budget Outlook, click here.
Top 10 Health Policy Stories of 2007
Karen Davis, of The Commonwealth Fund, a private foundation that aims to promote a high performing health care system that achieves better access, improved quality, and greater efficiency, created a list of some of the top health policy stories of 2007. To view the top ten list, click here.
Options for Achieving Savings and Improving Value in U.S. Health Spending
Health spending in the U.S. is projected to increase from 16 percent of gross domestic product in 2006 to 20 percent in 2016. At the same time, the number of people uninsured is rising rapidly. The Commonwealth Fund examines 15 federal policy options and their potential for lowering health spending over the next 10 years, relative to projected trends. To learn more, click here.
HHS Strategic Plan Fiscal Year 2007-2012
The U.S. Administration on Aging is pleased to inform you of the publication of the HHS Strategic Plan FY 2007-2012. This document provides a comprehensive overview of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Service’s priorities and activities for the next five years, and highlights the significant role that the U.S. Administration on Aging is playing within the department to improve the health and well-being of older people and their family caregivers. To learn more, click here.
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