Photo: Liz Seegert/AHCJBernard Cunniffe, shown with his wife Beverly, was assisted by his city’s Community Paramedics initiative after an accident.
When 84-year old Bernard Cunniffe fell in the bathroom one morning, his wife called the paramedics. However, rather than transporting the retired NYPD officer to the emergency department, the specially-trained responders assessed him for trauma, evaluated his vital signs and settled him into his bed.
Cunniffe, who is homebound because of multiple medical conditions, was uninjured but had low oxygen saturation, the likely cause of the fall. The community paramedics quickly stabilized him in consultation with an on-call physician and avoided a trip to the hospital. The Cunniffes were thrilled with the experience. Continue reading
Now that I have your attention, let’s talk about it. There’s good news and bad news on the older adult sexual health front.
First the good news, at least if you’re an older woman. Frequent, enjoyable sex can lower risk of hypertension according to a new study by researchers at Michigan State University. Continue reading
Some fragility fractures – those that occur at standing height – may be preventable by modifying a patient’s prescription drug regimen.
Older adults are more prone to these types of fractures, costing the U.S. health system about $16 billion annually in direct medical costs. Patients who already have had one fracture are more likely to incur additional ones. Continue reading
As health insurers adopt population health strategies they find that home-bound patients are the most difficult to reach. Under fee-for-service payment, insurers didn’t need to focus on these patients.
But the combination of the star-rating program that Medicare uses in its Medicare Advantage plans and the need to prevent hospital readmissions means health insurers now are paying extra attention to home-bound patients with chronic illnesses. Typically, these are the 5 percent of patients who account for half of all spending. Continue reading
Many Americans lose their private dental benefits when they retire.
But Medicare, the nation’s health insurance program for seniors, does not cover routine dental procedures.
The situation leaves millions of elders, living on fixed incomes, making hard choices about when to seek care – and, as in Thelma Chappell’s case, postponing a dental visit until the pain gets too bad to ignore. Continue reading