Guest article by Gina Cook
Everyone knows that the senior population is growing fast. By 2051 one in four people in the population is likely to be a senior over the age of 65. Yes, this will put a strain on our healthcare system, but this has been known for years yet what has been done to prepare? Very little!
Working in a retirement home in Scarborough, Ontario, I see this every day. On a daily basis we get phone calls from social workers and families saying that they need immediate care for a senior. We spend a great deal of time educating families who are told that their loved one is ready for discharge from hospital and they don’t know where to turn. They end up at our home often with very little information and are distressed, confused and frankly without being given the information they need to make an informed decision. Read the rest of this entry »
By Guest Blogger Edward Steinfeld, ArchD, Professor of Architecture and Director of the IDeA Center for Inclusive Design and Environmental Access, State University of New York at Buffalo. The Future of Universal Design was originally written for Disability.gov, which is included in our list of government websites.
From Accessibility to Inclusion
Universal design (UD) is an idea that developed in the mid-1990s as advocates of making buildings and products accessible to people with disabilities realized that these features often had benefits for a broader population. Examples include curb ramps, automated doors, closed captioning in television sets and accessibility features for computer operating systems. Read the rest of this entry »
A major cause for concern among the elderly, and those who love them, is bone degeneration. Particularly susceptible to malabsorption, osteoporosis, and nail fungus, which can eat away at the bone if left unaddressed, aging loved ones lean on their children and spouses for support.
In some cases, bone degeneration can be reversed. In most others, it cannot. In the latter, treatment options are limited, and often very painful.
One such treatment is replacement joint surgery. Replacement joint surgeries are performed to allow damaged tendons to heal, and to improve patients’ quality of life. Unfortunately, many replacement joints, including hips and knees, are constructed of metal. Too often, corrosion occurs, leading sometimes to blood poisoning. In many other cases, the body rejects the metal. When this occurs, patients must be rushed into emergency surgery to avoid further complications.
By Wayne Caswell, Modern Health Talk founder
An NPR story this week described a Congressional Budget Office report that tied health care to recent and future increases in the federal deficit, suggesting that the Affordable Care Act was a start but that we need much more to rein in health care costs by 2020, due to the aging baby boomers.
“A fairly accurate summary of the federal budget is that the U.S. does not have a deficit problem — it has a health care problem,” said Harvard economist and health policy specialist David Cutler.
I responded with my own ideas on reducing health care costs.
13 ways to reign in health care
1. First, understand the economic benefits of a healthy and productive workforce, and realize that Americans spend twice as much on health care but still live sicker and die younger, per the World Health Organization. Read the rest of this entry »
By Chris Miller (original at HealthWorksCollective)
A new robotic device designed to help those with paraplegia stand and function as if they were walking is expected to hit the market as early as next month.
Known as the Tek Robotic Mobilization Device or Tek RMD, the device debuted in 2012 and is the first of its kind to have been launched by Matia Robotics. Founded in 2006, Matia Robotics strives to improve the lives of people with disabilities by enhancing their health, wellness and level of independence.
Matia Robotics CEO Necati Hacikadiroglu, along with several team members, invented Tek RMD based on the specific needs of those with paraplegia, said Steven Boal, who serves on the Board of Directors.
“As you know, when a person is paralyzed from the waist down, they lose the use of their legs but their upper body still has its full function. So, if you can support their legs in such a way that leaves the hands free, they can do everything they used to do with their upper body,” Boal said, adding, “What they needed was a device that will support their legs without taking up any additional space and that will not restrict or limit their upper body functions. (Hacikadiroglu) developed the TEK Robotic Mobilization Device based on these considerations.” Read the rest of this entry »
Article summary and Modern Health Talk response about improving the Internet of Things (IoT).
I responded to a TechRadar article on The Internet of Things is nothing to fear, which explored the privacy fears when sensors sprinkled around our homes and communities monitor our every moves, and our health. The purpose of this article is to not to downplay those privacy fears but to share my perspective on the Smart House concept.
EXCERPTS: Health is an area that is already embracing the IoT. The idea of the quantified self, measured by tracker gadgets like the FitBit or Nike Fuelband, is becoming commonplace, and as the tech gets smaller and more embeddable it will be possible to weave sensors into the fabric of clothing or footwear and into the realms of true health monitoring.
Google recently patented a smart contact lens - not as a future iteration of Google Glass but as a way of measuring glucose levels in tears. Anyone at risk of diabetic shock would be able to keep tabs on their sugar levels without having to stop and take a blood test, while an app on a smartphone or other personal computing device could make great use of that data to trigger medication alerts or prompt for medical review. …
Packing our homes with sensors could give obvious, easy wins like mining temperature, room usage and weather data to fine-tune heating and ventilation. It could also offer a way to help care for the ageing population through projects like BeClose that look for changes in an elderly relative’s daily routine and sends alerts if anything seems amiss.
My Response Read the rest of this entry »
Stem Cell Research Moves One Step Closer To
Curing Age-Related Macular Degeneration
By Troy Cole
The leading cause of loss of vision in people over 50 is Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD), which causes damage to an area near the center of the retina called the “macula.” Primarily impacting central vision, this damaged area tends to grow as the disease progresses, causing blurred vision and dimness of sight. Read the rest of this entry »
Dan Munro wrote that annual U.S. healthcare spending will hit $3.8 trillion this year (~21% of GDP). There’s good info in his Forbes article and the referenced Deloitte report, but it should not be taken politically one way or another. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) data shows a slow bending of the cost curve, where the increases in health care expenditures are slowing slightly, the increase is slower than the economy, and it’s slightly slower than in previous years. Still, many of us hope to see costs decline outright, and by a lot.
To me, the real value is recognizing that there are hidden costs not captured in the official 2012 estimate of $2.8 trillion/year. Read the rest of this entry »
By Rohit Agarwal
Stroke also referred to as ‘Cardiovascular Accident’, is a type of a medical condition involving brain function disturbance due to lack of blood flow to the brain. There can be a number of causes that lead to a stroke, like blockages and hemorrhages.
This is a high level medical emergency that can be fatal. There is a high risk of a stroke to people of old age, diabetic patients, people who take high cholesterol diet, consumption of alcohol and smoking. Stokes should be taken seriously as it is considered to be the second leading cause of death in the world.
When a person survives a stroke there is always a risk of further repercussions that might include a second stroke, decreased brain functions, temporary loss of dexterity and paralysis. Hence, special care should be given not only in the hospital but at home as well, so we discuss home care tips for stroke patients. Read the rest of this entry »
AUSTIN, TX (1/30/2014) — After two years of working on an ordinance amendment, the Austin City Council passed changes Thursday that will require all new homes be more accessible and visitable to people with mobility disabilities.
The idea to require changes to make housing more accessible first came up inside City Hall back in 1998. That’s when Austin adopted the changes for homes built with city funds. The intention was that it would lead to an across the board policy, but that never came to be.
City staff and council members have spent the last two years working with stakeholders to draft an ordinance amendment.
After much debate, and several postponements, the council passed the ordinance amendment 6-1 with Mayor Lee Leffingwell voting against the measure. Read the rest of this entry »