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Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Nov. 27, 2006 / 6 Kislev, 5767

Is my Dad being treated well?

By Jan L. Warner & Jan Collins


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Q: My mother and father, both in their early 80s, recently began going to a new doctor since their primary-care physician of many years refused to accept Medicare. Dad has been getting more forgetful, but he is managing and seems very happy. Mom has a number of physical problems, including osteoporosis, but she is pretty sharp mentally.


They still live at home, she drives and they seem to be doing OK. My husband and I live about three hours away, but neighbors look in on them regularly and call us if there is a problem.


Mom called the other night in a panic because the new doctor wanted to put Dad on a medication for his forgetfulness. Mom said she and Dad spent only five minutes with the doctor and, according to her, the doctor never explained to them what he was going to prescribe or the side effects that could happen because of Dad's blood-pressure medication. She said she tried to call back, but could not get the doctor on the phone. I then tried to talk to the doctor, but his receptionist would not even connect me even though I am their only child and Mom says that she signed for me to be able to get information. The receptionist cited "privacy" concerns. None of this sounds right, and my mother is beside herself.


A: We agree that it does not sound right at all, and it appears there are three separate issues involved in your question:


First, it is unfortunate that some physicians are opting out of the Medicare system, but, as we have reported in the past, with reduced reimbursements authorized, more and more seniors are going to have trouble finding doctors to treat them. At least your parents have found a primary-care physician.


Second, if your parents signed privacy releases that allow you to secure information from their medical providers, there should be no privacy concerns. Many individuals think that if they sign advance directives, they have then satisfied the "HIPAA" regulations; however, since advance directives (living wills and health care powers of attorney) take effect only when an individual is incapacitated, signed advance directives generally will not satisfy state and federal privacy requirements.


Third, while there are no "cures" for Alzheimer's disease, which is one of the specific conditions that causes dementia, there are five medications that have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration to treat the cognitive symptoms of Alzheimer's disease. None of these medications can cure the disease, but they may slow the progression of memory loss temporarily.


Of the five, the most often prescribed are Aricept, Exelon and Namenda, and each comes with its own side effects that affect individuals differently. For that reason, and because these medications may also interact adversely with other medications being taken, more than an "off the cuff" prescription is essential.


In our view, the physician should explain not only the potential benefits of taking the medication and why that particular medication was chosen, but also the length of time in which a result should be expected and what, if any, effect the drug will have on both prescription and nonprescription medications.


In truth, Alzheimer's disease can be diagnosed only post-death by autopsy, so be aware that while signs may point to the disease, memory loss may well be attributable to other conditions.


Taking the NextStep: We suggest that you ask your mother to make an appointment with the physician. You should then take the three-hour drive to be there, and make sure your mother and father both sign medical releases in the form preferred by the physician. Also, plan to be there at the next visit before any medication is given to your father. For more information, you may wish to visit http://www.alzinfo.org, where a lot more information about Alzheimer's disease and medications is available.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JAN L. WARNER received his A.B. and J.D. degrees from the University of South Carolina and earned a Master of Legal Letters (L.L.M.) in Taxation from the Emory University School of Law in Atlanta, Georgia. He is a frequent lecturer at legal education and public information programs throughout the United States. His articles have been published in national and state legal publications. Jan Collins began co-authoring Flying SoloŽ in 1989. She has more than 27 years of experience as a journalist, writer, and editor. To comment or ask a question, please click here.

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