senior citizens

Wikimedia/Garry Knight

Who watches the people who watch senior citizens in care facilities?  Family members don't always have the ability to check up on their loved ones in long-term care. 

That's why Oregon has a Long-Term Care Ombusdman program, LTCO.  Staffers visit seniors in care facilities and keep track of everything from medical care to meal quality, and beyond. 


Just when people are retired and (hopefully) dealing with fewer stresses in life, along come the people who want to take their money. 

Scams that target senior citizens are on the rise, and there are programs to help seniors avoid becoming victims. 

Billie McNeely works for Adult Protective Services for the state of Oregon, Dawn Johnson is with the Better Business Bureau, and Don Bruland is with AARP


No one wants to reach a place in life where a guardian is appointed to make decisions on her or his behalf.  Guardianship situations arise when the law determines that people are unable to care or make decisions for themselves. 

Under guardianship, they can no longer make decisions about their care or their finances.  Disability Rights Oregon has worked with the legislature to add some safeguards to Oregon's guardianship law, but DRO still feels some further refinements are needed, and will ask for them when the legislature convenes next month. 

Giaccai, Italian Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0,

John Kalb is a chiropractor in Ashland, but his health interests go well beyond bones and joints. 

He focuses on the brain in his second book, Keep Your Marbles

It's addressed to fellow baby boomers who notice changes in how their brains work (and occasionally do not seem to work).  Think of it as a tuneup and maintenance guide for the aging brain. 

Public Domain/Wikimedia

The "silver tsunami" is well underway.  Children born during the American baby boom are all in their mid-50s and older now, many looking for places to spend their time after retirement. 

Does a "senior center" even appeal to them?  The country has plenty of them, and they provide a variety of services. 

Oregon's State Unit on Aging keeps tabs on many programs available to seniors. 

City of Ashland

A recall election against three members of the Ashland Parks and Recreation Commission failed at the polls Tuesday.  A long and bitter campaign failed to turn out commissioners Jim Lewis, Mike Gardiner, and Rick Landt.

Jan Jankovič/wikimedia

"A home."  That short phrase, uttered by senior citizens, is not a pleasant concept. 

The majority of senior citizens would rather live their later years in their own houses, not "a home." 

The national Senior Companion program pairs seniors who need some assistance at home--their own homes--with other seniors who are prepared to help. 

And the Lane County Senior Companion program is seeking volunteers. 


Meredith Maran had a pretty sweet life as a free-lance writer. 

Then, in a rather short window of time, she lost her best friend, her marriage and her life savings. 

So, at age 60, she started over: new city, new job, new friends, new lovers. 

She shows off her new life in the memoir The New Old Me

Wikimedia/Garry Knight

No one really relishes making plans for their care when they are old and infirm. 

And that's just the problem: not enough people plan for the possibility that they will need assistance late in life. 

Sharon Johnson makes the case for planning, both in her newspaper column "Healthy Aging" and in her work as executive director of Age-Friendly Innovators

National Institutes of Health, ID 2534

Maybe your phone rings in the evening, and you don't recognize the number in caller ID. 

So you pick up, only to hear some robo-call voice warning you that there could be a problem with your health or your safety or your money. 

If you're over the age of 50, that could be why you get such calls. 

A profusion of scams targets seniors, and Indra Nicholas from Home Instead Senior Care in the Rogue Valley has heard of most of them. 

Nursing Homes Due To Close On North Coast

Oct 14, 2016

It's hard enough to consider life in a nursing home; the prospect of other people having to take care of us is not comforting. 

And the prospect of leaving home is that much worse when it potentially includes leaving the community entirely. 

But that may loom for Humboldt County seniors, as three nursing homes make plans to close in the near future. 

Linda Stansberry has been covering the issue in the North Coast Journal

Keeping Life Fresh For Lower-Income Seniors

Oct 3, 2016

All the experts on aging say we should be engaged in interesting activities when our working days are done, to help prolong life. 

Which sounds swell, unless income is an obstacle to getting into activities. 

The non-profit EngAGE, "The Art of Active Aging,"  offers activities to low- and moderate-income seniors in Southern California, and just recently in Portland. 

Getting Old In New Ways

Mar 30, 2016
Penguin Books

We get plenty of books about seniors and living life well in our later years.  But getting one from an architect is something different. 

Matthias Hollwich's training and age combined to start him thinking about the structures designed for seniors--like nursing homes--and think he could do better. 

So he laid out his ideas in the book New Aging, ideas that range far beyond architecture and construction. 

What It Means To Get "OLD?!"

Mar 9, 2016
Wikimedia Commons

"I hope I die before I get old," The Who sang in their early years.  We're happy to report that both singer and songwriter are still with us, and in their seventies. 

But their former declaration is evidence of society's profoundly complicated feelings about aging. 

The feelings are explored further in the documentary film OLD?!, which brings together the musings on aging of dozens of people of widely varying ages. 


Isolation is a major concern for older people. 

Having friends move away or die can often leave seniors with few people to talk to on a regular basis. 

And there's evidence that isolation leads to depression. 

The evidence is collected and amplified by a new survey that shows depressive symptoms increase as face-to-face contacts with other people decrease. 

Oregon Health & Science University's Dr. Alan Teo, an assistant professor of psychiatry, is the lead author of the study. 

Livability And Mobility In An Aging America

Sep 21, 2015
Wikimedia/Garry Knight

The graying of America means changes in some of society's infrastructure. 

Because more people will choose to age-in-place in their own homes, AND they will need transportation to get around town. 

So it should come as no surprise that AARP maintains a focus on transportation and livability. 

Jana Lynott is a senior advisor in AARP's Public Policy Institute.

When you've got concerns about the treatment of a child, you call the state child welfare agency.

When you've got concerns about an older adult in long-term care in Oregon, you call the office of the Long Term Care Ombudsman

The office--one of many across the country--investigates everything from physical abuse to bad food in long-term care facilities, and volunteers power the program. 

Nursing Home "Shutout" In Humboldt County

Jul 20, 2015

Moving an older family member into a nursing home is hard enough.

In Humboldt County, it's nearly impossible at the moment for families receiving MediCal, the state's version of Medicaid. 

And the North Coast Journal says it's not because there's not enough space... it's because the company that owns the majority of the skilled nursing facilities wants more money per patient from the state. 

"Ashland At Home" Studied By National Group

Feb 23, 2015
Ashland At Home

The phrase "it takes a village" refers to the raising of children. 

But "villages" is also the term used for an approach to caring for the oldest members of society. 

Ashland At Home uses the village concept to help seniors stay in their homes later in life. 

And the program is now the focus of a national study on the effectiveness of villages. 

Connecting To Services For Seniors/Disabilities

Feb 19, 2015

The aging of the population probably means more people using Oregon's ADRC in the coming years. 

ADRC, the Aging and Disability Resource Connection, provides a gateway to many services available to seniors and people with disabilities. 

A person or caregiver just beginning to deal with new issues related to aging or a disability can easily be overwhelmed with the situation... and the many choices for remedying it.