Monthly Scoop: January 2020

Thank you to Ariel Sherry and Ailene Gerhardt for an informative and interactive talk on end-of-life planning. Ariel and Ailene described the movement to promote healthy, open conversations about death and dying, and the various tools available to facilitate planning. To demonstrate, Ailene led us in a round of the Hello game, which aims to help people start to share with friends and family what means most to them. Thanks, Ariel and Ailene! 


  • Job Board:
    • Our job board is a great resource for those seeking employment and those posting opportunities. Please feel free to submit openings through the job submission form on the Boston Bridge website. 
  • Membership Dues
    • New members are encouraged to join Boston Bridge! Our membership dues cycle is from September 2019 through June 2020. Dues are $30 for professionals and $20 for students. To join or to renew your membership, please click here

For Our February Meeting:Join us on February 19th to hear from Cal Halvorsen, PhD, MSW, about his research on late-life self-employment and entrepreneurship, encore careers, and older adults as social innovators. Cal is an assistant professor at the Boston College School of Social Work and Public Voices Fellow with Please note the room change for this meeting: we will be in room 450, one floor below our usual meeting space. We look forward to seeing you there!


  • Last month, we reported on a new meme called  “OK Boomer”. Another article indicates that “the catchphrase is used as a dismissive response to ideals, opinions, and experiences of older generations when younger people find them outdated, irrelevant or harmful.” Read about what to do about this meme and what it might mean.   
  • Laura Carstensen, Director of the Stanford Center on Longevity, reports that since we all live longer, society needs a new model for living our lives.  Should education simply be for youth, should work be delegated merely to mid-life, and should we have only one retirement? Laura posits that rather than expanding old age, with changes to the work span, youth and middle-age might expand.
  • Laura Cartensen is also responsible for the first major interdisciplinary global convening on longevity, held September 2019 in Italy. It seems Singapore is ahead of the game with innovations in workplace and wellness initiatives. Will other countries follow that lead
  • It seems that far too many older adults are taking far too many drugs. Medication overload is becoming even more of a problem since drugs are advertised on TV. Read this Age Friendly Health Care special report.
  • A new centenarian who has received accolades all her life for her baking prowess has a recipe for longevity. The New England Centenarian Study depends on women like this to study the secret to longevity both genetically and psychologically. Read the article that shouldn’t surprise any of us but certainly is an important reminder.
  • The Care Ecosystem is a new model of care for people experiencing dementia and their caregivers. Using relatively low tech and the services of a Care Team Navigator rather than a Dementia Specialist, this new model is receiving accolades from caregivers and a significant influx of money from the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation.
  • As our population ages, there remains, despite attempts otherwise, a severe shortage of geriatricians. It is not the most sought-after field of medicine, given the relatively low salaries compared to other specialties. This NY Times article shares what can be done and how medical centers are adapting to this shortage.

Mixed Media

  • Video Gaming for Older Adults? Yes, and it continues to grow in popularity. Many older adults are using online gaming to keep sharp and to improve social connections. Some have even hit stardom! Watch this video and read about this new trend.
  • New studies show that “correcting for sex differences in verbal memory performance” might help diagnose Alzheimer’s earlier for women. Learn about this interesting new development.
  • Nursing home evictions are all too prevalent. This video explains why and what can be done. 

Take Action

  • While it is known that air pollution is a general health hazard, it has recently become known that particle pollutants from wildfires contribute significantly to dementia and Alzheimers disease.  Sadly, those in California have been facing this climate hazard for awhile now. If there needs to be another reason for all of us to advocate for climate change and to push Congress to act, this article provides that reason.  

We look forward to seeing you in February.

Barbara Friedman and Colleen Morrissey, Boston Bridge Board Members