The Global Council on Brain Health (GCBH), an independent collaborative of scientists, health professionals, scholars, and policy experts from around the world who are working in areas of brain health related to human cognition, recently released a report offering broad recommendations on maintaining mental health relative to the pandemic. Continue reading
Massachusetts Executive Office of Health and Human Services (EOHHS) Secretary Marylou Sudders will hold a stakeholder call on Wednesday, February 24, 2021 at 9:45-10:30 AM to discuss Massachusetts’ Roadmap for Behavioral Health Reform: Ensuring the right treatment when and where people need it. Continue reading
A new report from The Fenway Institute finds that older LGBTQ adults in the Commonwealth report being diagnosed with depression at twice the rate of their straight, cisgender peers, and are twice as likely to fall and be injured in a fall over the past year.
It also finds that while older LGBTQ adults are more likely to hold a college degree, they are more likely to report having had difficulty paying for housing or food over the past year. LGBTQ older adults living in rural areas of the state expressed concern about the lack of options for LGBTQ-affirming health care, as well as their on-going experiences with strong anti-LGBTQ prejudice and harassment in public settings and senior housing. Continue reading
In addition to an evolving COVID-19 resource page, MHAC is continuing to collect and share updates on COVID-19 from state government, federal agencies like the Centers for Disease Control, and other key stakeholders.
These updates are to help and inform a wide range of individuals and partners, including communities working to become more age- and dementia friendly.
Please see the latest updates below: Continue reading
Adults who engage in music are more likely to self-report their overall health, brain health, and cognitive function as excellent or very good, according to a new report by AARP. The findings come from the 2020 Music and Brain Health Survey, which included 3,185 U.S. adults ages 18 and older and weighted to include a balance of respondents by demographics. Continue reading
In partnership with US Health and Human Services and the National Council on Aging, the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) released a resource inventory intended to provide information for those interested in enhancing their outreach and support for older Veterans and other older adults who have or are at risk for behavioral health conditions. Continue reading
Communities and partners in the Massachusetts Healthy Aging Collaborative network may be interested in the following virtual opportunities:
- Supporting Family Caregivers in the Workplace – Mass Business Roundtable
During this unprecedented time of COVID-19, the demand on family caregivers has never been greater. There are more than 840,000 family caregivers across the Commonwealth providing care to loved ones while balancing their work and other family responsibilities. The Roundtable helped launch the Massachusetts Caregivers Coalition bringing together business, education and public sector leaders to better understand and address the needs of family caregivers, a growing and essential part of workforces across every industry sector.
In this webinar, first in a planned series, a panel will address the realities of caregiving during COVID-19 and provide resources and strategies shared by experts. Confirmed speakers and moderators include Roundtable member Mark Butler, Cigna New England, Robin Lipson, Massachusetts Executive Office of Elder Affairs and Alexandra Drane, ARCHANGELS, as well as leaders from Roundtable members Seniorlink and Care.com.
- National Older Adult Mental Health Awareness Day – COMBATING SOCIAL ISOLATION FOR SENIORS DURING THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC
Join the Administration for Community Living (ACL), the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), the Veterans Health Administration (VHA), and the National Coalition on Mental Health and Aging (NCMHA) for a thoughtful discussion on ways to prevent social isolation and promote mental health during this unprecedented time in our history.
Suicide, depression, anxiety, and problems with alcohol and medications are issues that older adults face. The U.S. Census Bureau indicates that by 2030, there will be nearly 75 million Americans over age 65. A 2012 study from the Institute of Medicine found that nearly 1 in 5 older Americans has one or more mental health/substance use conditions. According to 2018 data from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention and reported by the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, adults in the 75-84 and 85+ age groups are among those with the highest rates of suicide.
Older Adult Mental Health Awareness Day 2020 will feature remarks from Lance Robertson, ACL Administrator and Assistant Secretary for Aging, and Dr. Elinore McCance-Katz, Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use. It will also share the latest information on social isolation and loneliness from Dr. Dilip Jeste, University of California San Diego Distinguished Professor of Psychiatry.
More Information on COVID-19 Responses:
- ACL Resources for older adults, providers, communities, and states
- SAMHSA Resources to assist individuals, providers, communities, and states
Studies of older people have shown that good mental health and greater social
engagement are markers of resilience in aging and may be protective against
cognitive decline. Some studies suggest that treating psychiatric symptoms may
also be protective.
Dr. Nancy Donovan, Director of Geriatric Psychiatry at Brigham & Women’s Hospital, will discuss these findings and her own research that is part of the Harvard Aging Brain Study, a longitudinal study of 270 cognitively healthy older adults. The presentation and discussion will take place at Goddard House Assisted Living in Brookline. Continue reading
The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has announced a unique call for proposals for solutions adapted from international models to combat social isolation. The opportunity, which is dubbed “Developing Solutions for Social isolation in the U.S.: Learning from the World, commences October 30, 2017 and ends December 21, 2017.
For more information, see RWJ Foundation’s announcement below: Continue reading