During the COVID-19 era, it’s more complex than ever for older adults to manage their health care. This summer, The Seattle Public Library is hosting free virtual programs for adults age 50 and older on topics ranging from navigating the Medicare maze to understanding the latest health research on cannabis.

“Older adults are facing unprecedented challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Nancy Slote. “We are working with community partners to offer virtual programs to help older adults navigate important decisions with physical and mental health, as well as fun programs that help them connect and learn.”

Visit the Adults 50+ page on the Library’s calendar at spl.org/fiftyplus to find these upcoming events and more:

  • 11 a.m. to noon Thursday, July 30Medication Management: Tips to Avoid Errors and Accidents. The Washington Poison Center will provide tips and tricks to prevent common medication errors such as double dosing, taking the wrong medication and adverse drug reactions. Come get your questions answered, and leave with tools to keep you and your loved ones safe when taking medications. Registration is required.


  • 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Tuesday Aug. 11Program to Encourage Active, Rewarding Lives. Join two mental health professionals for an engaging discussion on managing feelings of low mood, solving problems and finding ways to enjoy life more. PEARLS is a short-term intervention focused on problem solving and encouraging participants to engage in behaviors that help reduce feelings of depression. This program, offered in partnership with Seattle Parks & Recreation and Aging and Disability Services (ADS) offers free telephone counseling during COVID that assist low-income older adults (55+) living in King County. To join event, go to bit.ly/AgeFriendlyLive and use the blue “Join Event Now” button (it will be captioned in Arabic, Chinese, English, Korean, Russian, Spanish and Vietnamese).


  • 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 12Medicare Made Clear. The third of four Library programs on Medicare, this workshop will provide an overview of the different parts of Medicare (Parts A, B, C, D and supplements), what they cover and how they work. There will be a discussion of the different ways you can receive your benefits, including the pros and cons of each and approximate costs. Registration is required.


  • 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 13Cannabis 101: Current Evidence & Considerations for Older Adults. The Washington Poison Center will provide an overview of the basic principles of cannabis, including its most studied chemical compounds, common modes of use and current evidence on short-and long-term health correlations. This evidence will be examined through the lens of common older adult conditions, outcomes and unique considerations. Registration is required.



Other programs in August for older adults include a Virtual English Circle, events to practice conversational English skills online. Registration is required, visit our calendar to find a class that fits your schedule.

Look for more virtual events for older adults such as more programs on Medicate and a series on end-of-life planning.