Hands to Help Seniors
A shocking new study found that 1 in t0 older adults have early stage memory or cognitive problems, signaling early onset of Alzheimer’s disease. A new report from the Alzheimer’s Association found that 12-18% of those in the age bracket of 60 and older have “mild cognitive impairment,” a precursor to Alzheimer’s disease.
Seniors are getting more and more adept at using technology. It was great to see that Alliance on Aging is offering free one-on-one technology training classes for seniors age 60+ every Tuesday from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., by appointment only. You can learn the basics on how to use your devices – smartphones, tablets, Chromebooks, computers, and laptops. The training is provided by Loaves Fishes and Computers at 236 Monterey Street in Oldtown Salinas. For an appointment, call 831-646-4931 or 831-512-1330. This is a national trend. The Wall Street Journal recently ran a story about senior communities and assisted living facilities offering similar training.
Drugmakers and patient advocacy groups are pushing back against a federal proposal to cut off most Medicare payments for a new drug from Biogen Inc. to treat Alzheimer’s, called Aduhelm. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services last month proposed to limit coverage of the drug to patients enrolled in clinical trials which are sanctioned by the agency. The proposal would apply to similar drugs still in development and not yet approved that work by reducing amyloid protein in the brain. The high cost of the drug and questions over its efficacy are behind the decision of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
There was much excitement when the FDA approved a new drug called Aduhelm to treat patients with Alzheimer’s disease. Although there was some debate over its efficacy, the fact that there have been no new drugs brought to market to treat this horrible disease in decades had some filled with hope. However, Biogen Inc., the pharmaceutical company who makes the drug, admitted this week that there was one death linked to Aduhelm. The company announced that a 75-year old who took the drug was hospitalized and diagnosed with swelling in the brain before dying. It’s unclear that the brain swelling was linked to the drug, however, there is sure to be an investigation due to the fact that brain swelling, also known as ARIA-E, was cited as one of the most common side effects during testing of the drug.