What are we going to do with our old people? On one hand, the elderly constitute a rapidly growing percentage of the population. On the other hand, our families are no longer structured in a way that allows them to provide care for elderly members.
In this issue's special section, Health Progress offers some tentative answers. In "Toward a National Continuum of Care," members of the Elderly Housing Coalition (which includes CHA) note that traditional institution-based long-term care is too expensive to be a practical solution. Only by integrating healthcare, housing, and supportive social services, the coalition argues, can the United States prepare for the coming wave of vulnerable older people. Larry McNickle reports that, in little-noticed legislation passed last fall, the federal government took early steps toward a national continuum. Connie J. Evashwick, ScD, discusses some issues that healthcare and housing organizations considering collaboration will want to take into account.
Recipes for Change
A number of articles in this issue deal with change, in one way or another. James E. Small discusses, for example, measures a healthcare organization can take to make its board of trustees more effective. Warren R. Hauff describes the efforts of a Midwestern Catholic hospital to revitalize its decaying inner-city neighborhood. And Terrance P. McGuire, EdD, and Rev. Mark Tabbut write about the careful cultural transition that occurred when a Catholic system acquired an acute care facility from Columbia/HCA.
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