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My foster/adoptive parents were much older than most parents because they started foster care after their own children were grown. When my mother broke her hip a few years ago, I witnessed firsthand how fragmented and difficult our system of care for senior citizens in the San Diego region can be. As a poor senior on a fixed income, my mother found it difficult to identify and access supportive services, and had to rely on her children’s help. But what about seniors without family close by?
In this episode, I discuss ways that our region can and should increase focus on senior care and housing affordability issues. I touch on elements of the domains of livability that senior advocacy organizations have identified as critical to providing for a dignified life in one’s later years, and point to solutions that can better advance the care and inclusion of our senior population. The County of San Diego runs an Office of Aging and Independence Services that administers programs and services primarily funded from federal and state sources, but I think it can and should do more.
The critical takeaway is that our population is aging and, with limited incomes and crushing housing costs, we run the risk of creating a wave of severely challenged older adults that have significant and prolonged impacts on our region’s economic and social well-being.