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Welcome to the new ChangingAging.org weekly blog roundup for Nov. 6 to Nov. 12, 2010.

Find all the latest blog posts from Dr. Bill Thomas' blog ChangingAging.org below. Follow the links back to ChangingAging.org to join the conversation by sharing your comments.


Picker Report Talks to Eden's Chris Perna About Competing For $250K For Culture Change

The Picker Report on Aging with Dr. Bill Thomas continued its RealCareNowTV series yesterday with Eden Alternative CEO Chris Perna. Appearing from Eden headquarters in Texas, Chris discussed the Pepsi Refresh challenge with Dr. Bill and how winning the $250,000 grant will help transform five nursing homes in five states. Click here to read more and cast your vote.

Dr. Al Power

Priorities? "Mandatory Education" Packet Reminds Me that Elders Continue To Be Stripped of Autonomy, Purpose and Meaningful Relationships

I just finished reviewing my “mandatory education” packet for the year. Regs require all nursing home employees to be educated annually on certain issues, such as fire safety, infection control and emergency procedures. It raised some questions for me:

  1. How many people in US nursing homes have died this year due to a fire? Regrettably, probably a few.
  2. How many have died due to someone not following good infection control practices? Many more is the likely answer.
  3. And how many have died because they have given up, due to being lonely, helpless, bored, and living in a place where they have no opportunity to find meaning? Hundreds? Thousands?

It’s time for “loneliness, helplessness and boredom” to become a mandatory inservice. What do you think? Share your comments here.

Senior Emergency Department Trend Building Momentum

What started as an innovative pilot program at Holy Cross Hospital in Silver Spring, Md., two years ago is quickly turning into a national trend. A handful of hospitals around the country have looked at their community’s demographics and realized that an older population requires a more person-centered approach to emergency medicine. Click here to check out the latest news from Wayne County, Mich.

Culture Change

Stateline.org Profiles the Green House� Project Movement

Stateline.org, the premier government policy and news reporting web site, just published an in-depth profile of the Green House� Project movement.

Stateline specializes in picking-up on emerging trends that are poised to have a big impact on the nation. In regards to the culture change movement, Stateline reporter Chris Vestal has this to say:

the culture change movement isn’t just about new architecture. It’s about states adopting a new attitude toward regulation so that facilities can create more home-like settings and give elders more privacy and control over their environment.

Click here to continue reading.

Dr. Bill Thomas

Progress in Co-Housing

Charles Durrett is the American Grandpappy of Co-Housing and he has a passion for senior co-housing.�His book, The Senior Co-Housing Handbook �is essential reading. He sends me his e-mail newsletter and I thought I’d some of it with changingaging readers.�Click here to continue reading.


Driving + Aging = Controversy

Asking an older driver to give up his/her car keys because they may be “too old” is a question few people are prepared to tackle. Driving is synonymous with freedom in our culture.��For many older adults it’s not just a cultural symbol – it may mean the difference between independent living or institutional care.�Do we have any readers on either side of this situation (i.e. concerned for the safety of an older driver or concerned your kids are conspiring to take your keys)? Please share your comment here.

The National Transportation Safety Board just wrapped-up a two-day summit called “Safety, Mobility and Aging Drivers,” featuring academic and medical researchers, industry leaders, law enforcement officials, safety experts and advocacy groups like AARP. Click here to continue reading.

Art, Compassion and Aging

I think you will like this fusion of art, compassion and aging:

Annie Levy conceives, creates and exhibits projects, telling stories that transform the way we see things. She serves organizations, foundations and corporations needing to project a public awareness of their mission.

Dr. Bill Thomas

The Fosamax Disaster

This is going to be big:

The case is pitting Judith Graves, a 67-year-old retired investigator for the United States Army, against Merck. According to the NYT, her lawyer, Timothy O’Brien recently told the jury that Graves’s jaw deterioration, allegedly caused by Fosamax, had required five surgeries, including one to replace part of her jaw with a bone from her left arm.

I have prescribed Fosamax only a handful of times. I don’t like the drug. In my opinion it carries too much risk and offers too little benefit.

People who are taking Fosomax should make an appointment to discuss the wisdom of continued use of this drug.


Virgil Thomas

Applying to College

I read an interesting piece in the New York Times that looks at application inflation in today’s collegate world. It seems that on top of all the anxiety of raising tuition rates, SAT prep and writing the perfect admissions essay, prospective students also need to worry about an escalating arms war of rejections.

Click here to continue reading Applying to College.

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