Growing older: What people don't expect and how to best be prepared

KMC brings geriatrics awareness

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - The nation's senior population continues to grow each day as more and more people turn 65 years old -- Yet, as this demographic continues to grow,  the county's Kern Medical Center has made it clear there is a shortage in specialists for our community's oldest citizens. 

Early Saturday a special event was hosted by a partnership consisting of the Kern Medical Center, CSUB, UCLA and the California Geriatric Center to promote and bring awareness to the varying needs of aging citizens. 

The "Conference on Aging" brought a day's worth of tools and information on geriatric practices and issues, ensuring all types of medical and social assistance are equipped with the right tools. 

Jacey Cooper, the vice president of administrative services at KMC told 23ABC this is an imperative issue to tackle and bring to the forefront of medical and social care. 

"It affects all of us," Cooper said. "We all have people in our homes, in our families, who are getting older and are facing these challenges."

Some of the issues include what they call the 3 D's -- Delirium, dementia, and depression. 

The conference held a special session on these aging challenges and what everyone should know to better face these when the time comes. 

"Just being aware of those things is very important to make sure [seniors] get the best care possible," Cooper said. 

Cooper says there is a large education gap in the realm of geriatric issues and needs. That's why awareness continues to be the focal point in this partnership's mission to bringing better care and assistance to older Americans. 

The American Society of Geriatrics helps build and expand the foundation for geriatrics awareness. It lists the Health In Aging website as the most helpful with information on seniors' health and expected issues that may arise. 

You can click here to help those aging parents, grandparents, and other loved ones in you life and to spread the knowledge for yourself and others as you continue to age.

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