Dutchess County Office for the Aging’s AGING NEWS For the week of April 3rd

Dutchess County Office for the Aging’s


For the week of April 3rd


We’re going to need your help making sure this Golden Living column reaches the Dutchess County older adults who need it the most: those who are homebound.

“Homebound” is defined roughly as being unable to leave home unassisted. To be homebound means that leaving home takes considerable and taxing effort. A person may leave home for medical treatment or short, infrequent absences for non-medical reasons, such as a trip to the barber or to attend religious service.

That’s how the federal Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) defines it. But what if the older adult is unable to leave home for even those limited purposes, for important services like vaccination against influenza and/or COVID-19? Health officials have emphasized vaccinations and boosters for older adults, but homebound older adults still require assistance being connected with the necessary vaccines. The homebound are most likely to have potentially fatal underlying illnesses that can be worsened by a COVID-19 infection.

The Office for the Aging can help, and at no cost for vaccine(s) and administration, whether a homebound person requires a flu shot, a COVID vaccine or booster, or both. Contact OFA at 845-486-2555 and we’ll make the necessary connections. If unable to contact us during business hours, send a request including the necessary contact information through our email address: ofa@dutchessny.gov.

If you’re reading this online, please forward it to any homebound older adults living in Dutchess County who use email. If you’re reading this in print media and can get this article into the hands of the homebound older adults who need it, we truly appreciate your going the extra miles.

For homebound older adults outside of Dutchess, contact the OFA in their home county to see if a homebound vaccination program is offered there. Additionally, the homebound older adult’s health care provider may be able to arrange for in-home vaccinations. According to CMS, Medicare will pay a doctor or other care provider to give you the COVID-19 vaccine in your home. You may need to give them your Medicare Number for billing, but there’s still no cost to you for the vaccine and its administration. And remember: Don’t give out your Medicare Number or accept a vaccine from anyone who isn’t a known or trusted provider, or who contacts you without your invitation. OFA does not “cold call” people.

While the national COVID-19 public health emergency is scheduled to expire on May 11th, OFA’s homebound vaccination program will continue past that date with funding for the program is in place for at least the next several months.

Next week’s Golden Living will explain some of what will and won’t change for Dutchess County older adults after the expiration of the public health emergency.

Golden Living is prepared by the Dutchess County Office for the Aging, 114 Delafield St., Poughkeepsie, New York 12601, telephone 845-486-2555, email: ofa@dutchessny.gov website: www.dutchessny.gov/aging


Feeling a sense of connection and belonging is important for all of us and can positively impact our health. Individuals with strong social ties live longer and are healthier than those with weak social ties. Our relationships encourage us to take better care of ourselves, try new things, and develop a sense of purpose. 

Maintaining relationships can be hard for older adults who live far from family, experience health issues, or lack transportation. The social isolation and loneliness that can result often leads to both mental and physical challenges. Can you help?

Volunteers check in and chat with an older adult in Dutchess County at risk of loneliness or social isolation, once a week, for eight weeks. Each call lasts between 20 and 30 minutes. 

Register today for an upcoming OFA Friendly Calls Volunteer Orientation session. Each session lasts about 40 minutes. Pick any one of the following sessions:

Monday, April 3rd – 10:00 am
Tuesday, April 4th – 10:00 am
Thursday, April 13th – 4:00 pm
Thursday, April 13th – 5:00 pm

To register, call 845-486-2555 or email ofa@dutchessny.gov.

If you are part of a workplace or civic organization in Dutchess County that would like to host a Friendly Calls orientation at your place of business or meeting venue, email bjones@dutchessny.gov, and we’ll explore whether an onsite orientation is right for you.


2022 was a record year for the number of centenarians and couples married 70 years or more who were honored in the “Celebration of Aging” section of OFA’s summer newsletter THRIVE60+. There were eight Dutchess County couples confirmed as celebrating an anniversary of 70 years or more in 2022, and an amazing 30 individuals reached the 100-year milestone. The oldest Dutchess resident we know of is 108 going on 109, but with the continued growth in our centenarian population, someone in Dutchess might just be even older!

If you know – or are – somebody who lives in Dutchess County and is turning 100 years old or more in 2023, or a couple who are celebrating an anniversary of 70 years or more, let the Office for the Aging know. Contact OFA Outreach Coordinator Brian Jones at ofa@dutchessny.gov or 845-486-2544. Feel free to contribute digital photographs to the OFA newsletter, and stories of their lives and marriages too. Our publication deadline is May 9th.


The Spring 2023 issue of OFA’s THRIVE60+ is now available. It’s been distributed to the OFA email list and is viewable at www.dutchessny.gov/aging.

If you prefer the hard copy of the newsletter, it’s being distributed to public libraries throughout the county. For those of you who get THRIVE60+ through postal mail, you can expect your copy to arrive in April.

To be added to or removed from any OFA mailing list, or to update your delivery address, email ofa@dutchessny.gov or call 845-486-2555.


The Dutchess County Office for the Aging (OFA) invites veterans of all ages and their families to its Veterans Resource Forum on Tuesday, April 18th (new date) at the Pavilion at Brookmeade, 34 Brookmeade Drive in Rhinebeck (just off Route 308, east of the village), from 1 to 4 p.m. This is the event that was postponed due to snow on March 14th.

This free event will offer veterans and their families and caregivers important information and connections to various agencies, including the County’s Division of Veterans’ Services, VA Castle Point, and service providers. Space is limited; reserve your seat by calling OFA at 845-486-2555 during business hours, or email ofa@dutchessny.gov.

Representatives from Mental Health America of Dutchess County, Rhinebeck at Home and the County’s Department of Behavioral and Community Health’s (DBCH) Mental Health Subcommittee are among the participating organizations that will be available to meet with veterans and their families and provide information on a wide range of topics, including mental health resources and veterans’ benefits. Attendees will have the opportunity to learn about the services available to them, ask questions and connect with other veterans and their families.

The County’s Division of Veterans Services (www.dutchessny.gov/veterans) ensures Dutchess County veterans and their families receive their maximum eligible benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs and other agencies at all levels of government. In 2022, the Division rendered 20,212 contact services to Dutchess County Veterans and their families regarding services and entitlements available from federal, state, and local government.

Mental Health America of Dutchess County offers numerous programs for veterans – including the Vet2Vet; Housing, Employment, Reintegration and Outreach Program (HERO); Veterans Employment Training & Transitions Assistance Program (VET-TAP) and Weekend 4 Warriors programs – that offer local veterans emotional support, educational information, referrals to useful services, information about support groups, social events, advocacy, and short-term care management.

Rhinebeck at Home (www.rhinebeckathome.org) is a locally based, non-profit organization with members dedicated to helping each other to remain in their own homes and stay connected to their community as they grow older.

A branch of the County’s Mental Hygiene Board, the Mental Health Subcommittee advises the DBCH Deputy Commissioner and Director of Community Services about issues in the community and suggests ideas for inclusion in the Department’s Service Plan, which is submitted to New York State annually.

Other news:

The Thompson House care facility in Rhinebeck is set to close at the end of May.

A report from the Alzheimer’s Association says a shortage of workers for dementia patients is on the horizon. In New York, the report indicates that the value of unpaid care (often by family) for people with dementia is over $19 billion a year.

Yes, we’re harping on it a bit; the Mediterranean or MIND diet is again linked to lower dementia rates.

One for your younger friends who think they don’t need to worry about aging yet.

Depression and anxiety can contribute to biological aging, a study finds.

With warmer weather (and flies) coming, does the old home remedy of hanging a plastic bag filled with water (sometimes with pennies in it) to repel flying insects actually work? Inconclusive, says the science that exists.

Everything you ever wanted to know about sleep. A lot you wanted to know, anyway.

Cockleburs: they’re not just for getting stuck on your clothing during hikes. Researchers say that inside those burs is a fruit whose extract may have anti-aging properties.

Careful out there, night time drivers – it’s amphibian crossing season.

This week’s birthdays:

4/1: Novelist/poet Milan Kundera (94)

4/2: Singer/songwriter/guitarist Emmylou Harris (76)

4/3: Primatologist Jane Goodall (89)

4/4: Actor/director Craig T. Nelson (79)

4/5: Singer/songwriter Agnetha Fältskog (Abba) (76)

4/6: Heavy metal singer/songwriter Udo Dirkschneider (71)

4/7: Indian actor Jeetendra (Ravi Kapoor) (81)

Of course, we have a Bad Joke to end this week’s newsletter:

My uncle named his dogs Timex and Rolex. They’re his watch dogs.

Author: Harlem Valley News