California's Healthcare Crisis: African Americans Most at Risk



The November 16, 2016, California Health Report, published an extensive article by Dr. Karen Lincoln regarding the increasing need for caregivers throughout California especially, for African-AmericansKaren Lincoln is the founder and chair of USC’s Advocates for African American Elders(AAAE).  Several Senior Leaders are members of AAAE and they worked extensively with CSLA around our training initiative for California’s Coordinated Care Initiative (CCI).  AAAE and CSLA were funded by the SCAN Foundation to do this important work.  Dr. Lincoln is also the Director of the USC Hartford Center of Excellence in Geriatric Social Work. A member of the California Task Force on Family Caregiving, and Associate Director at USC’s Edward R. Roybal Institute on Aging.

Her article states that Studies have shown that African Americans have higher rates of dementia than both Latinos and whites, and face the highest risk of Alzheimer’s disease when compared to any other racial or ethnic group — three times as high, in fact. These racial disparities also extend to diagnosis and treatment, with African Americans far less likely to be diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or prescribed approved treatments. Yet these higher rates of Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia are just the tip of the iceberg for aging African-Americans. Another major challenge is caring for this group. 

Dr. Lincoln’s article stateAn estimated 5.8 million Californians already provide 3.9 billion hours of unpaid care to nearly 75% of older adults needing care in the community. While California ranks ninth nationally in terms of long-term care services and support, it ranks just 24th in supporting family caregivers.”  The article is a call to action for more to be done… now.

Below is the link to Dr. Lincoln’s complete article.