As we age, many of us will require new prescriptions and supplements to help treat conditions and keep our bodies as strong as possible. However, remembering what time to take multiple pills and the proper dosages can be difficult, especially if cognitive or memory concerns are involved. Proper medication management is essential. 

One out of every ten hospital admissions involving seniors is the result of medication mismanagement. While you may want to be there to help manage your loved one’s medications in person, being present several times a day to ensure proper timing and dosage is not realistic for many caregivers. However, with the advent of new technologies, being present for each dose may not be necessary.

New medication management technology products are available that can help seniors age well at home, including advanced prescription monitoring equipment. Several companies offer various models of prescription monitoring products that alert seniors when it is time to take their pills and remind them until the pills are taken. Some models even offer caregivers and family members peace of mind by alerting them if the medications are not taken. 

Equipment varies among large tabletop devices, to smaller pillboxes with alarms, and watches or bracelets worn by the senior. No matter what you or your loved one’s needs, there may be a technological solution or assistive device that is just right for your unique situation. 

New advances have also been made to personal emergency response systems. Emergency buttons give seniors and family members peace of mind in case of falls or other medical concerns. Council on Aging Silicon Valley offers Lifeline with the auto-alert option, alerting family and medical professionals even when the senior is unable to push a button. 

For more information on equipment and services, including Lifeline auto-alert, call Council on Aging Silicon Valley at (408) 350-3200, option 1 to speak with Information & Assistance.

Lung Cancer Screening

Medicare Part B covers lung cancer screening using low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) if the individual meets all the following criteria:

  • Aged 55 to 77
  • No signs or symptoms of lung cancer
  • Current smoker or quit smoking within the past 15 years
  • Tobacco smoking history averaging one pack per day for 20 years (“20 pack-years”)
  • An order from a doctor or healthcare provider

Take advantage of these preventative services offered by Medicare by asking for them for yourself or your loved one. In this way, older adults can reduce their risk of developing substance abuse disorders or mitigate its effects to maintain healthier lifestyles.

References

  1. National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2020, July). Substance use in older adults drugfacts. Substance Use in Older Adults DrugFacts | National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) (nih.gov)
  2. gov. (n.d.). Preventive & screening services. preventive services (medicare.gov)

 

This project was supported by the Administration for Community Living (ACL), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of a financial assistance award totaling $94,686 with 100 percent funding by ACL/HHS. The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by ACL/HHS, or the U.S. Government.