Author Archives: Liz Seegert

Liz Seegert

About Liz Seegert

Liz Seegert (@lseegert), is AHCJ’s topic editor on aging. Her work has appeared in NextAvenue.com, Journal of Active Aging, Cancer Today, Kaiser Health News, the Connecticut Health I-Team and other outlets. She is a senior fellow at the Center for Health Policy and Media Engagement at George Washington University and co-produces the HealthCetera podcast.

Diversifying your sources can improve your reporting

It’s an easy trap to fall into: call the hospital public relations department and ask to speak with an authority about your topic. Chances are good you will end up interviewing an older, typically white, male doctor.

And while there’s nothing inherently wrong with that, if you’re only talking to one group of experts, you’re missing out on vital sources which can add rich, diverse perspectives to your stories, according to the journalists who participated in the “Finding diverse sources for your story” panel at Health Journalism 2019. Besides, diversity is just good journalism. Continue reading

Panel examines improving quality of life for those with Alzheimer’s

Photo: Pia Christensen/AHCJBrent P. Forester

While scientists are getting closer to understanding the various causes and risk factors for Alzheimer’s disease and dementias, there’s still no cure.

However, that doesn’t mean life is hopeless for millions of people who have the disease, or their families.  There’s a lot we can do improve their quality of life, according to panelists at a Health Journalism 2019 session on Alzheimer’s. Continue reading

Study: Middle-income elders face housing and health care squeeze

Photo: Sebastian Celis via Flickr

The number of middle-income seniors age 75 and older is projected to nearly double over the next decade and likely will continue struggling to find affordable senior housing with supportive personal care services, according to a new study from the NORC research institute at the University of Chicago.

The study, published online in the April 24 issue of Health Affairs, identifies a vast new “middle market” for the seniors housing and care industry. The authors underscore the need for government and private sector actions to ensure middle-income seniors can afford the housing and care they will need. Continue reading

Aging in place panelists explore what’s working to keep seniors living at home

Almost every older adult — about 90% according to AARP — will tell you that they want to remain in their own home or in their community as they age. However, that can be a challenge as health issues mount, frailty takes hold or barriers like stairs seem insurmountable. Aging in place is often more easily said than done.

Challenges of social isolation, lack of nearby family to help, or appropriate, safe housing are among the biggest roadblocks to successful aging in place, according to the National Institutes on Aging. While some older adults can afford to hire caregivers who can help them with the various tasks of daily living such as bathing, dressing, or meal preparation, many cannot. Continue reading

New tip sheet details cancer diagnosis and treatment in older adults

Photo: Kim Brookes via Flickr

Cancer diagnosis and care are complex. When comorbid conditions, multiple medications, changing physiology and decreasing resilience are involved, they present further challenges for many patients and their cancer specialists. How can they treat a serious disease while minimizing the risk of mortality, side effects, and diminished quality of life?

The good news is that people generally are living longer. The downside is that with increased longevity comes increased odds of developing various forms of cancer. Continue reading

Diverse elders and caregivers need culturally relevant support

Despite the growing numbers of elders from different races, ethnicities, and sexual orientations, many of these older individuals are still marginalized when it comes to finding or accessing services and supports. That’s also true for those family members who care for them, according to a panel of experts at the recent Aging in America conference in New Orleans. Continue reading