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May 12, 1993

Long-term Care for Older Americans: the Institutionalization of Senescence

JAMA. 1993;269(18):2331. doi:10.1001/jama.1993.03500180015005

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THIS SPRINGTIME section of Medical News & Perspectives is devoted to Americans in the winter of their lives.

It focuses on the living situation of the approximately 1.5 million people aged 65 years and older—the age group unofficially designated "the elderly" by the US Bureau of the Census—who reside in the nation's approximately 19000 long-term care facilities, commonly called nursing homes. It also considers governmental and other efforts that will affect these facilities in the future. National Nursing Home Week. Held from May 9-15, it is an annual occasion designed for recognition of nursing home residents and staff by the American Health Care Association, Washington, DC. The association, established in 1949, is a federation of 11000 US for-profit and nonprofit nursing homes, with affiliates in every state and the District of Columbia.

The theme of this year's event, according to an association spokesperson, is "Commitment to Caring." It supports a