Healthy Aging

Aging and Disability Services promotes evidence-based programs in the Seattle-King County area that can keep you moving and help you stay connected.

In addition, Aging and Disability Services promotes access to basic needs like health food and oral health.

Additional healthy aging programs and services are available in the community. Contact Community Living Connections for more information.

Falls Prevention

Did you know that one in three Americans age 65+ falls every year? Falls are the leading cause of fatal and non-fatal injuries for older Americans (see this and other sobering statistics below).

Many of these falls are preventable. Aging and Disability Services promotes public awareness about how to prevent and reduce falls among older adults.

Following these key strategies will reduce your risk of falling:

  • Exercise for balance and strength.
  • Ask your doctor to review your medicines.
  • Get your eyes checked.
  • Make your home safer.

certificateReady, Steady, Balance: Prevent Falls in 2016

The national theme for Falls Prevention Day 2016 is Ready, Steady, Balance: Prevent Falls in 2016. In Washington state, Governor Jay Inslee has declared Thursday, September 22, 2016 as “Fall Prevention Awareness Day.” Click on the image at right to read the full proclamation.

If you or your organization would like to host an activity or event to help make people aware of steps they can take to reduce falls, read the National Council on Aging’s compendium of state and local Falls Prevention Awareness Day activities (2015 | 2014 )

falls prevention guide coverFalls Prevention Guide

The Centers for Disease Control’s guide to implementing effective community-based falls prevention programs includes tips for planning, partnerships, selection of an evidence-based falls prevention program, and implementing, promoting, and assessing your program, click on the graphic at right.

For information about programs currently available in Seattle-King County, e-mail ADS planner Karen Winston.

Statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

  • One-third of Americans aged 65+ fall each year.
  • Every 15 seconds, an older adult is treated in the emergency room for a fall.
  • Every 29 minutes, an older adult dies following a fall.
  • Falls are the leading cause of fatal injury and the most common cause of nonfatal trauma-related hospital admissions among older adults.
  • Sixty percent of fatal falls occur in the home.
  • In Washington state, falls result in over 12,000 hospitalizations each year (compared to 2,600 hospitalizations due to motor vehicle accidents).
  • Fifty-four percent of older adults are discharged to skilled nursing homes after hospitalization for falls.
  • Only 22 percent of people hospitalized for falls are able to return home.
  • The financial toll for older U.S. resident falls is expected to increase as the population ages and may reach $54.9 billion by 2020.

Falls Prevention in Russian and Ukrainian Communities

In April 2012, Aging and Disability Services received a Washington State Department of Health grant to test the effectiveness of the falls prevention strategies among Russian- and Ukrainian-speaking long-term care case management clients living in residential facilities who had a history of falls or were at higher risk for falls.

flyer coverActivities included:

  • A two-hour workshop led by Russian-speaking case managers and an Enhance Fitness trainer
  • Russian language falls prevention posters posted throughout the facilities
  • A follow-up training that recognized participants for their efforts, lifestyle changes, and/or progress
  • flyer coverAging and Disability Services was selected to present a Falls Prevention poster in the Innovations Showcase at the UWfalls prevention poster showing success of Russian and Ukrainian elders program Working Together for an Elder Friendly Future conference (September 2013), highlighting the success of its Falls Prevention in Russian and Ukrainian Communities program. Click on the image to open a larger copy (PDF).
  • Trainings were augmented with a short video, produced in both English and Russian (click on images below):

video screenshot     video screenshot

Participants viewed What YOU Can Do to Prevent Falls, a falls prevention “digital story” created in two languages by Russian- and Ukrainian-speaking case managers at Aging and Disability Services. Click on each image to view.


For a summary of results, read “Falls Prevention Efforts Succeed in South King County.” For more information, contact Aging and Disability Services planner Karen Winston.

Falls Prevention Resources

Tools for Health Care Providers and Human Services Professionals:

Recent Articles:

Living Well with Chronic Conditions

event flyer coverChronic conditions like arthritis, diabetes, hypertension, and lung disease often force older adults to give up their independence. Evidence-based programs shown here can help you improve your health and maintain your independence.

Living Well with Chronic Conditions is a six-week workshop that provides tools for living a healthy life with chronic health conditions, including diabetes, cancer, arthritis, asthma and heart disease. Through weekly sessions, the workshop provides support for continuing normal daily activities and dealing with the emotions that chronic conditions may bring about.

This evidence-based model—also known as the Chronic Disease Self-Management Program (CDSMP)—was developed by the Stanford University School of Medicine. A series of six workshops, held once a week in community settings such as senior centers, churches, libraries, or hospitals—places where people with different chronic health problems frequently come together. The workshops are facilitated by two trained leaders, one or both of whom are non-health professionals who have chronic diseases themselves.

The model emphasizes the patient’s role in managing illness. Peer trainers help participants build self-confidence and adopt healthy behaviors. Subjects covered include:

  • Techniques to deal with problems such as frustration, fatigue, pain and isolation.
  • Appropriate exercise for maintaining and improving strength, flexibility, and endurance.
  • Appropriate use of medications.
  • Communicating effectively with family, friends, and health professionals.
  • Nutrition.
  • How to evaluate new treatments.

The process through which the program is taught makes it effective. Classes are highly participative. Mutual support and success build each participant’s confidence in their ability to manage their health and maintain active and fulfilling lives.

The program is especially helpful for people with more than one chronic condition, as it gives them the skills to coordinate all the things needed to manage their health and helps them keep active.

Resources

PEARLS—Program to Encourage Active Rewarding Lives

The Program to Encourage Active Rewarding Lives (PEARLS) is an evidenced-based treatment program for older adults with disabilities who also have minor depression, which is recognized by the Administration on Community Living as meeting the highest criteria.

The PEARLS program is an outgrowth of a five-year research project conducted in collaboration with the University of Washington’s Health Promotion Research Center (HPRC). The research study showed PEARLS home-based depression management counseling significantly reduced depression symptoms and improved health status in chronically medically ill older adults with minor depression.

PEARLS participants are three times more likely than non-participants to significantly reduce or completely eliminate their depression.

PEARLS for Veterans flyerPEARLS Support for Veterans

Aging and Disability Services offers no-cost, in-home, PEARLS counseling to men and women who served in the military, including their spouse and spouse survivor, aged 55+ who may be feeling down, sad, or blue. PEARLS stands for Program to Encourage Active, Rewarding LiveS.

The PEARLS program helps people feel better by identifying problems and working toward solutions. PEARLS counseling supplements—without competing—with other services for veterans.

To contact PEARLS for Veterans, click here.Eligibility

  • Feeling down, sad, or hopeless more than half the days
  • Llittle interest or pleasure in doing things more than half the days
  • Age 55 or older
  • click here to download a referral form English speaking
  • Veteran, military spouse, or spouse survivor
  • Not functionally impaired by schizophrenia, schizo-affective disorder, manic depressive disorder, cognitive impairment, or current substance or alcohol abuse

Materials

PEARLS For PEARLS for Veterans publications, click on the images at right.

An article about PEARLS for Veterans—“Program to Encourage Active Rewarding Lives Helps Kent Veteran Succeed at Problem-Solving”—appears in the November 2012 issue of AgeWise King County (also available in PDF).

For the PEARLS for Veterans brochure, click on each of the images at right.

To view two brief videos about PEARLS support for veterans, click on each of the images below.

PEARLS for Veterans flyer Contact

For more information, contact Daniel Widner (206-615-0533) or Carl Kaiser (206-386-0039).

King County logoThis program received funding from the King County Veterans and Human Services Levy.

Resources:

video stillThe Program to Encourage Rewarding Active Lives: A Digital Story,
by Paul Snow, Aging and Disability Services, September 2012.

video stillThe Program to Encourage Rewarding Active Lives,
by Lori Sanford, Aging and Disability Services, February 2013.

Access to Healthy Food

Our decades-long commitment to healthy aging includes funding for both community- and home-delivered meals for elders, and programs that combine culturally-appropriate physical fitness and food.

ADS helps meet the dietary needs of adults age 60+ through congregate and in-home meal programs and nutrition education, allowing for better physical and mental health, and greater independence and social contact. In 2014:

  • 15,800 King County residents received congregate or home delivered-meals.
  • 382,700 meals were served in senior centers and other congregate settings.
  • 483,200 meals were delivered to the homes of frail older
    adults.

Community Meals

Congregate meal programs help meet the dietary needs of adults 60 years and older by providing nutritionally sound meals in a group setting. Nutrition education and social and fitness activities are also provided.

Watch the Video

Home-delivered Meals

Aging and Disability Services also contracts with community-based organizations to provide home-delivered meals (sometimes called “Meals on Wheels”) for older persons who are unable to leave their homes to shop or prepare nutritious meals. For information about eligibility, contact Community Living Connections—the Aging and Disability Resource Network—at 1-800-4-ELDERS.

Farm to Table

brochure coverFarm to Table is a partnership effort to bring fresh local produce to programs serving children and older adults in Seattle and King County.

By making healthy food more affordable and easier to access, our goal is to increase the health and well being of our community’s most vulnerable populations by:

  • Identifying purchasing options to meet program needs and budgets, including online ordering through the Puget Sound Food Hub, CSA models, and buying direct from farms.
  • Building skills and knowledge through community kitchen trainings, farm tours and other educational opportunties.
  • Helping communities develop low-cost shared purchasing models for ordering bulk produce to distribute in natural gathering places.

Awards and Recognition

Farm to Table logoFarm to Table Partners

Resources

  • Washington Grown and Farm to Preschool Toolkits
    Developed by WSDA’s Farm to School Program, these toolkits provides farms, schools, families, and communities with resources and information to incorporate the bounty of Washington produce into their programs and menus.

  • Training Video for Senior Meal Programs
    Filmed at the Sno-Valley Senior Center in Carnation, and produced by WSDA’s Farm to Schools Program in collaboration with Senior Services.

F2T Presentations and Reports

F2T Media Coverage

F2T CDC Grant Related Materials

Funding

Funding is currently provided by the City of Seattle, Public Health Seattle-King County and the HumanLinks Foundation.  The CDC provided initial funding for the project through the Communities Putting Prevention to Work (CPPW) and the Community Transformation grants, both of which have enabled project partners to leverage other resources and opportunities.

Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program

The 2016 application period is now closed.

flyerThe Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program (SFMNP) provides checks for eligible seniors to use at Farmers Markets throughout King County. The 2016 application process opened in April and closed on Monday, May 16. Applications required a postmark no later than May 16, 2016.

Because funds are limited, a random selection process is used to select recipients. All applicants received mail notification of their status on or before July 1.

Find a farmers market near you!

Eligibility requirements

In 2016, applicants were required to be:

  • 60 years old or older (or 55+ for American Indian/Alaska Native), AND
  • Low-income (below 185% of Federal Poverty Level):*
    • $1,832 monthly income for one person
    • $2,470 monthly income for two people
    • For larger households, add $642 per month for each additional person

Application Forms

Application forms were made available in 11 languages, listed below.

Proxy forms will be provided for anyone wishing to assign a representative. Note: Proxy forms are NOT program applications and will not be posted until the application period ends.

English

application | proxy | rights & responsibilities

Cambodian Cambodian

application | proxy | rights & responsibilities 

Somali Somali

application | proxy | rights & responsibilities 

Chinese Chinese

application | proxy | rights & responsibilities 

Spanish Spanish

application | proxy | rights & responsibilities 

Korean Korean

application | proxy | rights & responsibilities 

Tagalog

application | proxy | rights & responsibilities 

Laotian Laotian

application | proxy | rights & responsibilities 

Ukrainian

application | proxy | rights & responsibilities 

Russian Russian

application | proxy | rights & responsibilities 

Vietnamese Vietnamese

application | proxy | rights & responsibilities 

For assistance regarding your application, contact Community Living Connections at 206-962-8467 or (toll-free) 1-844-348-KING (5464).

Resources

Washington State DSHS Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program

SFMNP Survey Results 

Results of 2003 survey distributed to farmers, market managers, and senior consumers.

SFMNP Evaluation 
Detailed evaluation of market basket pilot project. Research articles on the Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Pilot Program published in January 2004 issue of Preventing Chronic Disase, Centers for Disease Control:

Oral Health

How does Washington stay healthy? One of the ways is managing our mouths.
For a series of public service announcements about oral health produced by the Washington Dental Service Foundation, visit The Mighty Mouth.


Aging and Disability Services recognizes that oral health is an important factor in overall health and well-being. Oral health is included in Healthy People 2020 , the national objectives for improving the health of all Americans.

Oral Health Self-Management Plan

oral health flags flyerLike flags on a beach that indicate hazardous surf conditions, ADS has created green, yellow, and red oral health flags that indicate health (green), indications of poor health (yellow), and situations that require immediate medical attention (red). Special thanks to the Washington Dental Service Foundation for reviewing this information.

On the back of the Oral Health Flags, you will find a Personal Health Record (PHR) that can help track contact information for your dentist and other health care providers, questions to ask your providers, medications and supplements you take, and other important information.

flyerPatient Handouts:

Oral Health Care Cards for Caregivers

The Washington Dental Service Foundation developed Oral Care Cards for Caregivers cards in partnership with the Alzheimer’s Association. These are a great tool for caregivers looking for techniques to make oral care easier.

flyer

Finding Affordable Dental Care

We know it’s difficult to access affordable dental care. A good place to start is Finding Dental Care, a SeniorsOralHealth.org webpage maintained by our partners at Washington Dental Service Foundation. There are three links:

In addition, we recommend contacting Community Living Connections to request information about other forms of assistance.

Nuts About Oral Health (video)

video still
Nuts About Oral Health, a digital story by Maria Langlais,
Aging and Disability Services, February 2013.


Resources