Features for Senior Citizens

Ten Percent of Grandparents Live With a Grandchild, Census Bureau Reports

Oct. 22, 2014 - Of the 65 million grandparents in the United States in 2012, 7 million, or 10 percent, lived with at least one grandchild, according to Coresident Grandparents and Their Grandchildren: 2012 , a new report released today by the U.S. Census Bureau. The percentage of children who lived with a grandparent in 2012 was also 10 percent, rising from 7 percent in 1992. More...

Health and Medicine for Seniors

Many Elderly Found with Puzzling Mutations Linked to Leukemia, Lymphoma

Researchers find no connection with blood cancer that seldom strikes senior citizens

Oct. 22, 2014 – A surprisingly large percentage – 5 percent – of senior citizens over age 70 have been found to have genetic mutations linked to leukemia and lymphoma in their blood cells. The vast majority won't get blood cancer, however, as the incidence of these cancers is less than 0.1 percent among the elderly, according to the researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. More...

Health and Medicine for Seniors

Flu Vaccine May Hold Key to Preventing Heart Disease with a Shot

A new study in Vaccine explains how flu vaccines prevent heart attacks

Oct. 21, 2014 – One of the reasons senior citizens should not hesitate to get a flu shot every year is the added protection it provides against heart attack. Those who get vaccinated are 50 percent less likely to suffer a heart attack in a year. The potency of this protection has motivated researchers to learn more about what is causing it and how to create a vaccine just to prevent heart disease. More...

Medicare & Medicaid News

Problems Seniors Have with Medicare Advantage Plans Highlighted

Medicare Rights Center highlights Advantage Plan denials of coverage and appeals

Oct. 21, 2014 - The Medicare Rights Center has released its first Medicare Snapshot: Stories from the Helpline, spotlighting Medicare Advantage (MA) plan denials of coverage and appeals issues as experienced by a typical caller to Medicare Rights’ national helpline. Over one-third of all callers to the helpline express difficulty managing coverage denials and appeals. More...

Medicare & Medicaid News

How to Pick a Medicare Advantage Plan: Consumer Reports

CR’s October issue has lots of tools to help with your decision and ranking of  MA plans


Oct. 21, 2014 - In the months leading up to the fall Medicare open enrollment season, your mailbox may be overflowing with sales brochures from Medicare Advantage plans. Our advice is to ignore them. There are better, unbiased ways to pick the right plan for you, according to a Consumer Reports. More...

Exercise & Fitness for Senior Citizens

Mental Benefits of Physical Exercise for Seniors Decease with Age

Participants who were older than 70 years of age tended to show no benefit of exercise in German study

October 14, 2014 – A new study from Germany questions the benefits of exercise for both men and women after they reach the age of 70. For people in their study between the ages of 60 and 70 regular training on a treadmill tended to improve cerebral blood flow and visual memory. However, trial participants who were older than 70 years of age tended to show no benefit of exercise. More...

Caregiver & Elder Care News

Elderly Improve Physical Function After Encouraging Subliminal Messages

Challenge was to enable the participants to overcome negative age stereotypes acquired from society

Oct. 20, 2014 – Want to make elderly people feel better about themselves? Just flash some positive words about old people on their computer screens, so fast that they are not even aware they saw them, and see their attitudes and physical function improve and stay great for weeks. That’s what researchers from the Yale School of Public Health report. More...

Social Security News

Sixth Years of Record Low COLAs Unprecedented, Says Senior Citizens League

Oct. 20, 2014 - The annual Social Security cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) will remain at record low levels again in 2015, says a new forecast by The Senior Citizens League (TSCL). According to the most recent consumer price index (CPI) data through August, TSCL forecasts that COLAs will be 1.7 percent in 2015. “That would make the sixth consecutive year of record low COLAs,” states TSCL Chairman, Ed Cates. “That’s unprecedented since the COLA first became automatic in 1975,” he notes. More...

Social Security News

Social Security COLA for 2015 Looks Like 1.5, Maybe 1.7, Percent

Posting by Social Security Office of the Actuary looks like Trustees' projection of cost-of-living for next year was correct

Oct. 19, 2014 - Senior citizens are going to receive a Social Security cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) of about 1.5 percent for 2015 according to projections releases today by the Office of the Chief Actuary at the Social Security Administration. Based on current projections the increase could, however, be as high as 1.7 percent or as low as 1.4%. More...

Features for Senior Citizens

Majority of American Senior Citizens Would be in Poverty Without Social Security

New supplemental poverty report from Census Bureau drops 2.3 million more seniors below poverty level – medical expense the significant factors

By Tucker Sutherland, with materials from U.S. Census Bureau

Oct. 17, 2014 – The last time we got a report on poverty in the U.S., which was just weeks ago, senior citizens seemed to be doing pretty well. Although the “official poverty” report said 4.2 million seniors lived in poverty, the rate was flat with 2013. Now, the Census Bureau has reported a different look, called the “supplemental poverty rate” and a few million more seniors have dropped below the poverty rate. More...

Medicare & Medicaid News

Five Costly Mistakes Boomers Make When Enrolling in Medicare

NCOA's My Medicare Matters is designed to help seniors make smart choices; also offers help on Open Enrollment

Oct. 16, 2014 – Signing up for Medicare probably presents more options than most Baby Boomers assume before they reach age 65. With hundreds of policies to choose from, and so much information to understand, many seniors guess when choosing a policy and end up paying too much for a plan that doesn't cover what they need, according to the National Council on Aging (NCOA), which created a website to help senior citizens. More...

Retirement News

Boomers Facing Retirement Very Concerned About Health Care Cost, They Say

Most are concerned but few are taking any financial action to do anything about it

Oct. 16, 2014 – The overwhelming majority (86%) of baby boomers express concern about the affordability of health care in retirement, but very few pre-retirees admit they have taken financial steps to prepare for health care costs in retirement, according to a study released today by Ameriprise Financial. More...

Medicare & Medicaid News

Seniors to Find Medicare Advantage, Drug Plans Improving as Enrollment Opens

CMS touts better quality and more variety and steady prices as Open Enrollment period begins today, runs through December 7 (Links to more news on Open Enrollment below news report)

Seniors and people with disabilities are benefiting from improved quality in Medicare health and drug plans at competitive prices.”

CMS Administrator Marilyn Tavenner

Oct. 15, 2014 - For 2015, steadily increasing quality of plans should give seniors confidence that they have an array of quality choices at competitive prices, according to a news release today from The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) reminding seniors that Medicare Open Enrollment begins today. More...

Medicare & Medicaid News

Medicare Help to Guide Your Open Enrollment Challenge

Medicare Open Enrollment – the time to make changes in your Medicare services – opens tomorrow and closes on December 7

By Tucker Sutherland, editor, SeniorJournal.com

Medicare videos may help you with Open Enrollment - see links

Oct. 14, 2015 – Medicare Open Enrollment – it begins tomorrow, but for many senior citizens it is not something they eagerly anticipate each year. Not liking change just seems to be something that develops in our DNA as we become a senior. And, it is made even more distasteful knowing the whole system of choosing the right health and drug plans is designed for using a computer to go online. More...

Mental Health, Alzheimer's, Dementia

Mental Stress Impact on Heart Varies Between Men, Women

Women had greater increase in negative emotions, decrease in positive emotions

Oct. 13, 2014 — Researchers found that while men had more changes in blood pressure and heart rate in response to the mental stress, more women experienced myocardial ischemia, decreased blood flow to the heart. The women also expressed a greater increase in negative emotions and a greater decrease in positive emotions during the mental stress tests. Women also experienced increased platelet aggregation, which is the start of the formation of blood clots, more than men. More...

Medicare & You Available Online or for E-Readers as Help for Open Enrollment

Printed books have been mailed but if you have not received it, or prefer electronic data convenience it is online to help seniors with Open Enrollment, which starts Wednesday

See in story what you can do during open enrollment, link to Plan Finder

Oct. 13, 2015 - As senior citizens do their research in preparation for Medicare Open Enrollment that begins on Wednesday, an important reference to use is the Medicare & You 2015 handbook, which provides information on Medicare provisions for the new year. The paper edition was mailed to all Medicare enrollees in October but if you have not received it, it is available online or as a download to your eReader or other digital devices. More...

Social Security Q&A

Life Expectancy Calculator at Social Security Can Help Retirement Planning

Social Security provides some information on Medicare Open Enrollment that begins this wee

Oct. 12, 2014 – Did you know that Social Security provides a Life Expectancy Calculator on their website? It can come in pretty handy for planning your retirement and Social Security strategy. It is just one of the top answers in this week’s Social Security Q&A. Another big one is about Medicare Open Enrollment that begins this week and the opportunity for Extra Help. More...

Senior Citizen Politics

New Women’s Initiative Focuses on Income Inequality, Health and Retirement Security

“Eleanor’s Hope” continues Roosevelt legacy of social progress

Oct. 11, 2014 - A new national initiative, Eleanor’s Hope, to help bring an end to the disparity between men’s and women’s income, health and retirement security, was launched this week by The National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare. A “press call” announcement included Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Congresswoman Gwen Moore (D-WI), NOW President Terry O’Neill and Tufts Health Plan President/CEO, James Roosevelt, Jr. More...

Medicare & Medicaid News

Medicare to Cover First Stool DNA Test for Detection of Colorectal Cancer

Cologuard the first and only FDA-approved noninvasive stool DNA screening test for colorectal cancer

Oct. 10, 2014 – Exact Sciences Corp. announced yesterday that Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services issued its final National Coverage Determination (NCD) for Cologuard, making it the first and only Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved stool DNA test for the detection of colorectal cancer and precancer covered by Medicare. Coverage will go into effect immediately. More...

Health and Medicine for Seniors

Fake ‘Good’ Cholesterol Wins Fight to Reduce Plaque Buildup

Points toward new method for preventing plaque buildup in the arteries that can cause heart attacks and strokes

Oct. 10, 2014 - Scientists at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) have created a synthetic molecule that mimics “good” cholesterol and have shown it can reduce plaque buildup in the arteries of animal models. The molecule, taken orally, improved cholesterol in just two weeks. More...

Caregiver & Elder Care News

Heart Valve Disease Hits One of Ten Elderly Women Warns Educational Campaign

Alliance for Aging Research says it hits men and women but women tend to have worse prognosis

Oct. 10, 2014 - A new campaign has been launched aimed at educating about heart valve disease in women, a condition that causes damage to one or more of the heart’s four valves and can lead to loss of independence, disability and death. It affects one in 10 women age 75 and over and one in 50 of all adult women, says the Alliance for Aging Research. More...

Medicare & Medicaid News

Medicare 2015 Part B Charges Remain Unchanged, Part A Deductible Up Some

Premiums, copays and deductibles for other Medicare programs for 2015 also announced

Oct. 9, 2014 – There is good news for senior citizens today – the Medicare Part B monthly premium and deductible will remain the same for 2015 as the last two years: $104.90 and $147 respectively. Most other Medicare charges will also remain stable with the exception of The Medicare Part A deductible, that beneficiaries pay when admitted to the hospital, will be $1,260 in 2015, an increase of $44 from this year's $1,216 deductible. More...

Medicare & Medicaid News

Many Medicare Outpatients Pay More at Rural Hospitals, Report Says

Medicare pays country hospitals more generously so they won’t go out of business

By Jordan Rau KHN Staff Writer

Oct. 9, 2014 - Many Medicare beneficiaries treated at primarily rural “critical access” hospitals end up paying between two and six times more for outpatient services than do patients at other hospitals, according to a report released Wednesday by the inspector general at the Department of Health and Human Services. More...

Medicare & Medicaid News

Hospice Providers Cheer New IMPACT Act Signed by President Obama

‘This new law strengthens oversight and transparency throughout the entire hospice community’

Oct. 9, 2014 - A new law, the “Improving Medicare Post-Acute Care Transformation Act of 2014” (IMPACT Act), that includes provisions creating greater oversight and increased transparency within the hospice community was signed and made official yesterday by President Obama. The National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization push for passage of this legislation and cheered the President’s final approval. More...


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Caregiver & Elder Care News

Tips for Slowing Increase in Nursing Home Infections

Infections are a leading cause of deaths and complications for nursing home residents

Oct. 9, 2014 –A study, which examined infections in U.S. nursing homes over a five-year period, found increased infection rates for pneumonia, urinary tract infections (UTIs), viral hepatitis, septicemia, wound infections, and multiple drug-resistant organisms (MDROs). This alarming increase found in the study from Columbia University School of Nursing suggests more must be done to protect residents of these facilities - mostly senior citizens - from preventable complications. More...

Caregiver & Elder Care News

Senior Men Moving to Memory Care Communities Faster Than Women

Senior men 27% more likely than women to require memory care services

Oct. 8, 2014 – Both men and women are moving in increasing numbers to memory care communities, however, male move-ins are growing at a rate that is 14 percent greater than women over a three-year period (July 1, 2011 through June 30, 2014), according to the senior living referral service, A Place for Mom. More...

Aging & Longevity

Life Expectancy in U.S. Continues to Reach New Highs

CDC report based on 2012 data says most young Americans can expect to live 78.8 years - women to 81.2, men to 76.4

Oct. 8, 2014 - Life expectancy at birth for the U.S. population reached a record high of 78.8 years in 2012, according to a new report from the National Vital Statistics System of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. More..

Alzheimer's, Dementia & Mental Health

Memory Loss Associated with Alzheimer’s Reversed for First Time, Study Claims

Small trial from UCLA and Buck Institute claims success using systems approach to memory disorders

Oct. 7, 2014 - This study from the UCLA Mary S. Easton Center for Alzheimer’s Disease Research and the Buck Institute for Research on Aging is the first to suggest that memory loss in patients may be reversed, and improvement sustained, using a complex, 36-point therapeutic program that involves comprehensive changes in diet, brain stimulation, exercise, optimization of sleep, specific pharmaceuticals and vitamins, and multiple additional steps that affect brain chemistry. More...