U.S. Surgeon General’s Warning

In an 81-page advisory notice released on May 2, 2023, U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy called for individuals “to build more connected lives and a more connected society because the mortality impact of being socially disconnected is similar to that caused by smoking up to 15 cigarettes a day.”

“Loneliness is far more than just a bad feeling,” he explained. “It harms both individual and societal health. It is associated with a greater risk of cardiovascular disease, dementia, stroke, depression, anxiety, and premature death.”

Given the significant health consequences of loneliness and isolation, we must prioritize building social connection the same way we have prioritized other critical public health issues such as tobacco, obesity, and substance use disorders.

Connectedly’s Intervention

40 years ago, Connectedly recognized the link between social isolation and mental and physical health for older adults. We provide vital social connections for older adults living independently, older adults who are homebound, and grandparent-headed families. Our services include ongoing community meetings, group counseling and support sessions, educational workshops, resource referral, individual counseling, case management, and family supports. Our programs are free of charge, easily accessible, and serve individuals and families in the greater Philadelphia area.