Saturday, November 26, 2022

Play

An investigative probe into how rules written for distressed rust belt property may benefit a select few; Small Business Saturday highlights local Economies; FL nonprofit helps offset the high cost of insulin.

Play

A Supreme Court case could have broad implications for the future of U.S. elections, results show voters rejected election deniers in many statewide races, and the concession phone call may be a thing of the past.

Play

A water war in Southwest Utah has ranchers and Native tribes concerned, federal solar subsidies could help communities transition to renewable energy, and Starbucks workers attempt to unionize.

Pandemic's Social Distancing Took Heavy Toll on FL Seniors

Play

Friday, June 17, 2022   

Older people across the country are dying from drug overdose or suicide at much higher rates now compared to a decade ago, according to the latest America's Health Rankings Senior Report from UnitedHealthcare.

The report found depression among seniors is up 9%, suicides have increased by 13%, and drug deaths among people over 65 have doubled in the last 10-12 years.

Joyceline Fliger, CEO of Elder Care Services, a community-based senior care provider in Tallahassee, said the pandemic only exacerbated the problems stemming from loneliness.

"And there's been additional studies that show that it is as bad for your physical health as smoking," Fliger pointed out. "In every program that we run, there is some component that addresses social isolation and making sure people aren't socially isolated."

While the report showed drug related death among Florida seniors increased by 58%, it also indicated there has been progress in the amount of funding for community supports, a lower prevalence of seniors accidentally falling, and higher numbers of cancer screenings.

Dr. Rhonda Randall, chief medical officer for UnitedHealthcare employer and individual, said social distancing was not easy for many at the height of COVID restrictions, but the toll was heavier for some who were already living alone.

"The risk of social isolation is measuring a lack of meaningful social connectedness among seniors," Randall pointed out. "Things that put you at risk are being never married, widowed, divorced, separated, living alone, living in poverty."

The data in the report also showed positive signs with improvements in flu vaccination, self-reported health status and oral health among seniors across the nation.

Both Randall and Fliger urged people to reach out to the older friends and relatives in their lives, and help them reconnect with their communities and activities.

Disclosure: United Healthcare contributes to our fund for reporting on Health Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
During open enrollment for 2022 coverage, Georgia saw a record number of individuals, more than 700,000, sign up for health insurance. (Rawpixel.com/Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

Open enrollment for health insurance through the Affordable Care Act is already underway, and ends on Jan. 15. More than 1.3 million Georgians do …


Social Issues

Holiday shoppers this week have no shortage of options with Small Business Saturday being observed on Nov. 26. Sandwiched between Black Friday and …

Health and Wellness

The American Heart Association has developed a series of videos to educate women about heart disease. The Red Chair Series is a four-episode series …


Chris Powers stands in front of the Land Bank lot that he tried to bid on in Southern Ohio. (Eye on Ohio)

Social Issues

By Lucia Walinchus for Eye on Ohio.Broadcast version by Nadia Ramlagan for Ohio News Connection Collaboration reporting for the Ohio Center for Invest…

Social Issues

While many Iowa families gather through this weekend to celebrate Thanksgiving in traditional ways with food and family, thousands of people take to …

The EPA claims that the EES Coke Battery plant has emitted thousands of tons of sulfur dioxide annually beyond its permitted limit of 2,100 tons. (Wikipedia)

Environment

Members of a Detroit-area community are intervening in an Environmental Protection Agency lawsuit against a DTE Energy subsidiary charged with dumping…

Health and Wellness

A bill headed to President Joe Biden's desk addresses a long-standing problem for domestic violence survivors, ending their ties to their abusers' …

Environment

Oregon is home to a plethora of rivers, but those waterways are not always accessible to every community. A new video series highlights how …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright © 2021