Findings about Spain’s senior care shared with trustees

JHF staff, board members, and guests broke bread July 29 while discussing how Spain cares for its seniors and those living with dementia.

Trustees David Ehrenwerth, Debra L. Caplan, Elliot Oshrey, and Steve Irwin; and Tomi Waters, DEd., a member of the Health Careers Futures Board of Directors joined JHF's staff for a special Aging and Dementia Lunch & Learn on July 29.

JHF COO and Chief Program Officer Nancy Zionts presented findings from the April visit to Barcelona, Madrid, and Valencia she made with JHF President Karen Wolk Feinstein, Women's Health Specialist Kate Dickerson and trustee Caplan.

Spain has one of the world's highest longevity rates, and is developing models of care to address the expected increase in neurological disorders such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. Spain's approach to Alzheimer's emphasizes early identification and diagnosis, personal attention to patients, and programs for families. People living with the disease are kept in the community for as long as possible. Other strategic areas include increasing awareness to reduce stigma, training professionals and promoting research in areas such as epidemiological studies, risk factors, new drug therapies or non-drug therapies.

Following the presentation and lunch, Senior Quality Improvement Specialists Stacie Bonenberger and Anneliese Perry provided a 60-minute, interactive Dementia Friends information session. Feinstein as well as board members Caplan, Oshrey, Irwin, guest McLaughlin, and eight JHF staffers became dementia friends, bringing the number of Dementia Friends across the state to 1,659 friends.

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