The Loneliness Epidemic

By Ken Burdick

Did you know loneliness poses the same health risk as smoking 15 cigarettes a day? In fact, new research indicates weak social connections and feelings of extreme isolation could shorten a person’s life by 15 years. With more than one-third of U.S. adults age 45 or older indicating they are lonely, we’ve reached a critical number of individuals who are at risk for serious health outcomes. Continue reading “The Loneliness Epidemic”

What It’s Like to Be Homeless for a Night in Honolulu

By Scott J. Sivik

Last Friday, I spent the night outside on a cardboard box for the second time. It remains one of the most humbling experiences for me each year. The weather was unpredictable, the streets were loud, and needless to say, I only got a few hours of real sleep.HI_CEO Sleepout_SleepingBag

It’s hard to complain about one night spent outside when there are more than 7,000 homeless individuals in Hawaii who struggle with this reality every day.

It was a privilege to participate in the annual #CEOSleepout organized by The Salvation Army Hawaiian & Pacific Islands. Together, ‘Ohana Health Plan and other local businesses and organizations, slept outside of the state capitol rotunda in Honolulu to better understand the struggles of Hawaii’s homeless residents, while raising awareness and needed funds for food, shelter, clothing and more. Continue reading “What It’s Like to Be Homeless for a Night in Honolulu”

May is Mental Health Awareness Month

By Dr. Mark Leenay

Each year millions of Americans face the reality of living with a mental illness.

That’s why May is a month to bring awareness to mental health issues.

At WellCare, we place a significant emphasis on mental health—not only in May—but throughout the year. We use a coordinated, holistic approach to care for our members based on their unique physical, behavioral, pharmaceutical and social needs because we believe this integrated approach helps our members live better, healthier lives. Continue reading “May is Mental Health Awareness Month”

WellCare’s New Survey Reveals Struggles of Managing Aging Parents’ Substance Misuse & Abuse

When it comes to having “the talk” about the risks and dangers of drugs and alcohol, parents understandably tend to focus on having that conversation with their kids.

Increasingly, however, it seems parents need to be having this conversation with their aging parents as well.

According to a new WellCare survey, “The Tough Talk: Aging Parents and Substance Abuse,” 90 percent of adults say they have discussed the risks and consequences of overusing/misusing/abusing drugs and alcohol with their children, while only 68 percent of adults have had that same conversation with a parent, stepparent or parent-in-law. Continue reading “WellCare’s New Survey Reveals Struggles of Managing Aging Parents’ Substance Misuse & Abuse”