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Aging In Arizona, Part 3: Health Care For Navajo Elders Requires Bridging Language, Culture

Rising sun decals in patient rooms
(Photo by Chris McCracken)
Rising sun decals in patient rooms at Flagstaff Medical Center indicate which way is east for Navajo patients.

More Arizonans are living longer because medical advances in heart disease, cancer and diabetes keep their bodies going. But what about their brains? In our five-part series, Aging In Arizona, we explore what researchers are learning about the aging brain, the risks of developin g dementia and latest treatments for it.


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Melissa grew up in Tucson, Arizona, where she fell in love with the ecology and geology of the Sonoran desert. She has a B.S. in Environmental Science from the University of Arizona and an M.FA. in Creative Writing and Environment from Iowa State University.