Photo courtesy of Richard Lui
Journalist Richard Lui is best known as the weekend news anchor on MSNBC. But eight years ago, he also became a family caregiver — flying between New York City and his parents’ home in San Francisco to help care for his father, who had Alzheimer’s disease.
It got him thinking about mental health — his dad’s, his own, and that of other families who struggle with serious illness or disability. His journey led to “Unconditional,” a documentary that profiles three families — including his own — as they help their loved ones through their crises and discover their own inner strength.
When longtime NPR journalist Kitty Eisele became a full-time caregiver for her dad, she found herself unprepared for the medical, legal and emotional challenges of elder care. So, she did what any good journalist would do. She started reporting. Eisele created the Twenty-Four Seven podcast, now in its third season, which explores living, dying and what our loved ones mean to us.
In this “How I did It,” you’ll learn more about Eisele’s storytelling process for her podcast. This conversation with has been edited for clarity and brevity.
About 41 million unpaid family caregivers provided an estimated 34 billion hours of care — worth $470 billion — to their parents, spouses, partners, and friends in 2017, according to a new report from AARP’s Public Policy Institute (PPI). The report explores the growing scope and complexity of caregiving today, which includes an aging population, more family caregivers also in the paid workforce and an increasing amount of medical and nursing tasks now provided at home.
Ensuring better recognition of and support for family caregivers has become a health, economic, and social imperative, according to the report. Several co-authors discussed the analysis at a Nov. 14 press conference during the Gerontological Society of America annual meeting in Austin, Texas. Continue reading
It’s hard to fathom how someone could abuse a vulnerable older person, especially a family member. Unfortunately, elder abuse is growing – by some estimates, one in 10 Americans 60 or older have experienced some form of elder abuse.
Funding needs to increase at the federal, state, and local levels to address the causes, consequences and solutions to this issue. As a society, we need to come to terms with this challenge and do a better job of taking care of our elderly population, according to panelists at AHCJ’s October workshop on aging and health in Los Angeles. Continue reading
Are you familiar with the concept of memory cafes? If not you should learn more, because there’s likely one in or near your community.
They’re a growing trend worldwide as more families and communities seek accepting environments for loved ones with Alzheimer’s and other dementias. Continue reading