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New Census Bureau Tool Launched to Help Measure Community Resilience to Disasters

Released last year as an experimental data product, the U.S. Census Bureau’s Community Resilience Estimates (CRE) garnered so much interest among public and government agencies that the Census Bureau decided to offer it regularly — with tweaks based on user feedback — to help decision-makers plan how to best serve their community.

The Census Bureau defines “community resilience” as the capacity of individuals and households to absorb, endure, and recover from the health, social, and economic impacts of a disaster such as a hurricane or pandemic. Continue reading

MACDC Creates ‘Guide to Reading a Hospital’s Community Benefits Report’

The Massachusetts Association of Community Development Corporations (MACDC) created a Guide To Reading A Hospital’s Community Benefits Report.

Age and dementia friendly community coalitions are among the community-based partners that can use this guide, which is valuable for mapping out common ground with a hospital’s efforts to improving social determinants of health, as a resource to better understand their local hospital’s commitments to community health priorities, and to foster more collaboration between hospitals and community-based organizations. Continue reading

Baker Administration Announces Vaccine Mandate to Protect Older Adults in Skilled Nursing Facilities

The Baker Administration announced plans to implement a vaccine mandate for long-term care (LTC) staff to strengthen infection control and protect vulnerable residents. COVID-19 vaccination is the most effective method for preventing infection and serious illness from the virus, and staff at long-term care facilities and other health care providers serving vulnerable populations are critical in efforts to protect older residents. Continue reading

CDC, Archangels Studies Report Prevalence of Mental Health Challenges for Caregivers During Pandemic

According to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study, caregivers, particularly persons with both parenting and adult caregiving responsibilities, will continue to face mental health challenges, and the need for caregivers is projected to increase as the U.S. population ages.

Age and dementia friendly community initiatives may consider how to be inclusive of caregiver needs when engaging residents for feedback and when crafting an action plan. Continue reading

Issue Brief – Medicare and Telehealth: Coverage and Use During the COVID-19 Pandemic and Options for the Future

An issue brief published by Kaiser Family Foundation dives into the rapid expansion of telehealth during the pandemic. For example, among the vast majority of Medicare beneficiaries with a usual source of care (95%), such as a doctor or other health professional, or a clinic, nearly two-thirds (64% or 33.6 million) say that their provider currently offers telehealth appointments, up from 18% who said their provider offered telehealth before the pandemic.

But nearly a quarter of Medicare beneficiaries (23%) say they don’t know if their provider offers telehealth appointments, and this percentage is larger among beneficiaries who live in rural areas (30%). Continue reading

New Data on Advance Care Planning During Pandemic Coincides with Preparations for Healthcare Decisions Day

As the toll of COVID-19 continues to climb, newly released poll data suggest an opportunity to use the pandemic as a prompt for discussing and documenting older adults’ wishes for  care, in case of seriously illness or injury.

Overall, 59% of the 50- to 80-year-olds polled said they had had a conversation with loved ones about their preferences in case they became severely ill. That percentage was even higher — 70% — among those over age 65. Just 7% of all older adults polled said COVID-19 had motivated them to have such conversations. Continue reading