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Southcoast Seniors Radio Magazine - A Show for Seniors and About Seniors

Connelly Law's Southcoast Seniors Radio Magazine is live and back on the air every Thursday at 4:00 pm on WPRV, 790am in Providence after a brief hiatus due to COVID-19. Although the show does discuss elder law issues and, of course, the services offered at the firm, Certified Elder Law Attorney RJ Connelly III insisted that the show be more than just an hour about elder law and his office.

Senior care usually involves multiple services

"As an elder law attorney," said Connelly, "I see our firm fitting into a continuum of care for seniors and their families. For instance, if there is a diagnosis of dementia, it's important to plan ahead. We can assist the family by developing an estate plan, trusts, and even begin Medicaid planning knowing what lies ahead. And because we have developed a network within the senior care industry, we can assist by making referrals to trustworthy agencies and individuals who can also assist those seniors and families in need."


"This is why we do our radio show. We invite guests who have expertise in all areas of senior issues and care. This could be a show about finding the right assisted living program, keeping a loved one home with the assistance of adaptive aids and other safety devices, to discussing supports for the family during the most trying times of dealing with dementia. We're proud of our show and the information we present on a weekly basis. I see this show as a unique opportunity to get information out to a wider audience."


And what about elder law? Just what is it?


"In elder law, we focus on a specific type of person and not a specific discipline," said Connelly. "The work we do helps aging Americans to legally navigate through the issues of their life that arise because of the aging process. We offer legal advice and counsel to the individual and to their families on preparing for a disease like Alzheimer's, or finding a long-term care facility, and how to plan and settle their estate."


The number of Americans over the age of 65 is rapidly increasing and it is estimated that by 2060, this number will grow to a whopping 98 million citizens. So for a family to invest in an elder law attorney may indeed be a wise move.


"The big issue here is preparing for aging and its associated conditions ahead of time. One thing we know for sure, no matter how well we take care of ourselves, our bodies will break down at some point. It's a function of biology. We also have little control, at least today, over the DNA that we inherit. So having a plan helps when the surprises we are not expecting pop up," stated Connelly.


In the coming weeks on Southcoast Seniors Radio, Connelly has scheduled an impressive list of professionals to discuss all things related to senior care. "We try to keep the show topical and our guests are some of the top experts in the field that we are discussing for that week. I am committed to keeping our seniors and their families as informed as possible about the issues of aging and being able to help them access services across the spectrum of senior care providers."


Let's take a look at the scheduled guests for shows going into October.


July 23 - The Pandemic and Senior Mental Health

Michael Cerullo, licensed Psychotherapist

We know that a person's mental health and well-being are influenced by numerous factors and are susceptible to change. Today, most people, across all sections of our society, are being affected by the coronavirus pandemic. One particular group we need to pay close attention to during this challenging time is older adults, whose routines and usual support systems are being disrupted. On this week’s Southcoast Seniors Radio Magazine, our guest will be Mike Cerullo, a licensed psychotherapist in Rhode Island who will discuss how this pandemic has affected the mental health of seniors.  Anxiety, depression, chronic stress, insomnia, and increased drug and alcohol use are just some of the concerns being reported.  We will look at symptoms and available treatments for this age group.

July 30 - The Alliance for Better Long-Term Care

Kathy Heren, Alliance for Better Long Term Care

On this week’s Southcoast Seniors Radio Magazine, our guest will be Kathy Heren, the Rhode Island State Long Term Care Ombudsmen, from the Alliance for Better Long-Term Care. The Alliance, is a non-profit, independent advocacy organization that defends the rights of those who can no longer speak for themselves – elderly and disabled Rhode Islanders who receive long term care services in nursing homes, assisted living residences, and those who receive licensed home care or hospice services. Residents in nursing homes are among the frailest and most vulnerable and at times need help to improve their quality of life and care. The ombudsman provides assistance, so all facility residents receive respectful and competent care. The Alliance also works to influence changes in laws and regulations that protect nursing home residents and provides guidance and support to the industry. The Alliance’s record of concern and accomplishments in public policy has earned it a place on the major state commissions addressing these issues. Kathy will discuss how COVID 19 has affected the long-term care industry for residents and their families as well as for care providers.


August 6 - Alzheimer's Disease and Memory Disorders Center at RI Hospital

Terry Fogerty, Community Outreach Coordinator

On this week’s Southcoast Seniors Radio Magazine, our guest will be Terry Fogerty, the Outreach Coordinator from the Alzheimer’ Disease and Memory Disorders Center at Rhode Island Hospital.  The center is nationally known for its clinical services and research including the clinical trials program that offers the latest in leading-edge new therapies at the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. Terry has been a guest on the show before and is a wealth of information on Alzheimer's and the resources available in Rhode Island and surrounding states. “This is the golden age,” Terry recently told the Warwick Beacon. “There has never been this breadth and depth [of research], there’s never been this [level of] collaboration and sharing of information, and we invite you all to consider being what we call affectionately ‘citizen scientists’ and joining us in this fight to end this disease.” Join us for this informative show.

August 13 - Trinity Health and Rehabilitation Program

Trinity Health in Woonsocket, RI

On this week’s Southcoast Seniors Radio Magazine, our guest will be Coleen Pendergast, social services director at Trinity Health and Rehabilitation in Woonsocket.  Trinity Health & Rehabilitation is conveniently situated in a quiet neighborhood atop Woonsocket’s highest point, only two miles from Landmark Medical Center and the Rehabilitation Hospital of Rhode Island. Trinity has a long and proud history of providing superior skilled nursing and progressive rehabilitation services to those who need services in Woonsocket and the surrounding Blackstone Valley. Their specialized team of healthcare professionals understand what the community expects and needs from a skilled nursing center. Coleen will discuss how Trinity Health has addressed the pandemic from an organizational standpoint as well as with residents and their families, she will also discuss the future of long term care post-COVID-19 for long term care residences.

August 20 - Senior Home Care

Sheri and Patrick Kennedy, Amada Senior Care

On this week’s Southcoast Seniors Radio Magazine, our guests will be Patrick and Sheri Kennedy, owners of Amada Senior Care of Rhode Island, and are native Rhode Islanders who want to support seniors in the state they love. “We are proud to be a veteran-owned and female-owned senior care business,” says Sheri. “Our decision to open an in-home care business was to help seniors in Rhode Island enjoy life without the worry of dealing with the unclear landscape of senior care.” The couple state they were both lucky to have their grandparents live into adulthood and know the care it takes to ensure that seniors live a long, happy, and fulfilling life. Their services are not limited to in-home care, as they assist families through every aspect of senior care. This means they can help families identify the best living environment for their needs, help them make sense of long-term care insurance policies and other methods of financing, and provide any other solutions to make sure seniors are safe, comfortable, and content. We will get an update from them regarding how Home Healthcare agencies are providing care in the age of COVID-19 and the effectiveness of telehealth services in the senior care industry.


September 3 - Parkinson's Disease

The effects of Parkinson's Disease

Parkinson’s disease is known as an older person’s disease since it is most often diagnosed in people over age 60. Only 4 percent of all cases are diagnosed before age 50. This disease is the second most common age-related nerve degenerating disease after Alzheimer’s. Parkinson's disease is a progressive nervous system disorder that affects movement. Symptoms start gradually, sometimes starting with a barely noticeable tremor in just one hand. Tremors are common, but the disorder also commonly causes stiffness or slowing of movement. In the early stages of Parkinson's disease, a person's face may show little or no expression. Their arms may not swing when you walk. Speech may become soft or slurred. Parkinson's disease symptoms worsen as your condition progresses over time. On this show, we will discuss symptoms and the available treatments with the medical director of the Parkinson's Foundation.


September 10 - Parkinson's Disease - A Young Man's Journey

Scott Erickson performing at a concert in New York City

Ron Barry Klugman, who worked under the stage name of Ron Barry, was a highly successful radio host in the Philadelphia radio market for years, having long-running shows on stations WEST and WEEX in the 1960s and 70s. Barry loved "doo-wop" and Motown music, and kept his listeners educated on this sound, he also made radio talk interviews "cool" before the genre gained widespread acceptance and popularity. Barry had deep connections within the entertainment industry and had well-known guests on his show including regular visits from stars of "Dark Shadows" an American gothic soap opera that originally aired weekdays on the ABC television network, from 1966 to 1971. Barry also authored "All American Elvis" a discography that is considered to be one of the finest and most thorough works of its kind. Barry went on to become the television voice for National Wrestling Federation Championship Wrestling, a professional wrestling show featuring the top 1980's TV wrestling stars like Sgt. Slaughter, Bruiser Brody, Wendi Richter and more. Sadly, Barry was fighting Parkinson's Disease which eventually robbed him of his voice and his ability to stand still. And for Ron, he fit into the rare "4 percent" with an early onset of the disease. His son, Scott, as a young teen, accompanied his father to wrestling shows and other events and assisted him in getting ready for the broadcasts until he could no longer speak. Scott followed his father's love of music and became a successful musician. Today, going by the stage name of Scott Erickson, he has built up a reputation as one of the Northeast's premier performers. As a solo artist, he has opened for The Bacon Brothers (actor Kevin Bacon and his brother Michael), classic rock icons Blue Oyster Cult, and comedians "Big" Jay Oakerson, Tom Rhodes, and the legendary Gilbert Gottfried. He has also performed with former Paul McCartney sideman Robbie McIntosh, and Hamish Stuart (who has also worked Ringo Starr), Country Music superstar Keith Urban, and most recently jammed with the legendary rock & roll band, The Smithereens. On this week's show, Scott will discuss how Parkinson's affected his father's career, how the disease impacted his life and the life of his family. Join us for this special presentation!


October 8 - The Ravages of Arthritis

Dr. Luke Barre

October 12 is World Arthritis Day. Our guest will be Dr. Luke Barré, a nationally known specialist who is board certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine with certifications in Internal Medicine as well as the subspecialty of Rheumatology. He is also the Medical Chair of the Leadership Board of the Rhode Island Chapter of the Arthritis Foundation. Arthritis is an inflammation of the joints. It can affect one joint or multiple joints. There are more than 100 different types of arthritis, with different causes and treatment methods. Two of the most common types are osteoarthritis (OA) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA). The symptoms of arthritis usually develop over time, but they may also appear suddenly. Arthritis is most commonly seen in adults over the age of 65, but it can also develop in children, teens, and younger adults. Arthritis is more common in women than men and in people who are overweight. We will discuss all symptoms and treatments as well as where research may be heading in someday ending this crippling condition.


If you have any requests for guests please email us at ddrake@connellylaw.com. You can also here the podcasts of our show by going to our website.



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