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"Net yields wealth of elder care info"

Contra Costa Times

Posted on Thu, Mar. 30, 2006

THE AMOUNT of aging and elder care information on the Internet is staggering. From caregiver support and conversation blogs to medical treatment and updates on Medicare Part D, I discover new sites on a daily basis.

For example, a recent Google search resulted in 12,400,000 sites for the words "elder care" and 238,000,000 sites for "aging"!

While I enjoy surfing the Internet for elder care issues, sorting through all this information can be confusing. To help you out, here are my picks for the best elder care and aging Web sites.

On the local scene, I just realized that the fabulous electronic newsletter, compiled by Diane Driver and the UC Berkeley Resource Center on Aging, still exists. I printed out 13 pages of information that covers recent publications, their choice of great Web sites, new resources at the UCB Resource Center Library, job postings and numerous local and national aging and elder care events.

For example, I discovered "Almost Home" ("Independent Lens," 11 p.m. Tuesday, Channel 9) a PBS documentary portraying honest stories on aging. The film chronicles the lives of residents and staff at St. Johns on the Lake, a retirement community in Wisconsin. Check out for more information.

If you would like to receive the UCB biweekly e-mail newsletter, send a note to with "Newsletter Only" in the message's subject field. If you are interested in receiving Bay Area and California job postings for the field of aging, send an e-mail note with "Jobs Only" in the message's subject field. If you would like to receive both the newsletter and job announcements, place "Jobs & Newsletter" in the message's subject field. You can also go to

My next favorite local site is the Family Caregiver Alliance in San Francisco. Geared for caregivers of dementia or Alzheimer's patients, there is an abundance of fact sheets, a newsletter, support groups, medical research updates and more. Go to

Over the years, I have consistently relied on the California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform's Web site. I recommend it to clients for the excellent description of the Medicaid/Medi-Cal qualification system, nursing home government survey reports, updates on monitoring residential care facilities, and the latest legislative attempts to reform nursing home care. See

Of all the medical Web sites, I prefer You just type in one word, say, arthritis, and it searches eight medical Web sites to come up with information on causes, symptoms and recent news. And on the righthand side of the arthritis definition page are super anatomical pictures of a knee joint replacement, hip replacement, rheumatoid arthritis, synovial fluid and hip surgery.

The site also searches and compiles information from numerous medical Web sites. Among its offerings are flu updates and a healthy travel channel.

Finally, if you are struggling with the ever-changing rules of Medicare and Medicaid/Medi-Cal, don't forget, and