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The consequences of an older population. Issues to be explored and discussed include the possible increased burden on the younge - Research Paper Example

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Consequences of an Older Population Name Institution Date Table of Contents Table of Contents 1 Consequences of an Older Population 2 Impacts of the Older Population 3 Medicare 5 Medicaid 6 Reform Areas 6 Social Security Reform 6 Medicare and Medicaid Reform 7 Focus on Older Americans Act (OAA) 8 Establishment of an Affordable and Viable Delivery System for the Elderly 8 Recommendations 9 Conclusion 10 Consequences of an Older Population United States is experiencing an unsustainable increase in the number of elderly people owing to the decline in birth rate and increased life longevity…
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Download file to see previous pages This has reduced individuals available to replace the potential retirees thereby creating an imbalance between the working population and elderly. Another contributing factor is the baby boom generation, which is expected to attain 65th birthday between 2011 and 2029. Increased elderly individuals have multiplied pressure on the national pension and health care programs. This is because the ratio of the working population and the dependent elderly people has declined. The key strategy necessary to curtail the dependency challenge of the older generation is for the community to view the elderly as a resource and not a liability. Higher and controlled birth rates will assist in the replacement of the retiring older population. Increased numbers of the working population will generate more revenue required for funding the health and retirement programs. This paper discusses the political embattlement of programs for the aged and options suitable to relieve the burden. Impacts of the Older Population Approximately 70% of the United States government’s expenditure is directed to Medicare, Medicaid and other social security programs. The spending on these programs is expected to grow steadily due to the increase in the aging population. The dependency ratio in the United States is expected to increase from 22 percent in 2010 to 35 percent due to the expected retirement of the baby boomers and the decline in the working population (Bremner, et al., 2010). Older individuals require complicated health care needs compared to the younger generation; a necessity that enhances pressure on the social security programs and increases the future health care demands. The elder people are vulnerable to chronic disease such as cancer and diabetes as compared to the younger generation. For instance, in the United States 84 percent of adults over the age of 65 years suffer a chronic illness compared to 38 percent of individuals under the age of 44 years (Wu & Green, 2000). They also take more prescription drugs as compared to the younger generation thus increasing the health care expenditure. Older people are vulnerable to physical deformities such as breaking bones after falls contrary to the younger generation. This implies that they constantly require sophisticated medical attention. Their productivity is low relative to that of the younger people, due to their cognitive and physical limitations. This implies that most of the activities will require the intervention of the younger people who are few in number. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (2003) asserts that 35 percent of elderly people above the age of 65 have activity limitations compared to 6 percent of those between 18 to 44 years. The needs and utilization mode of the baby boomer generation is expected to be different from that of the current older generation. Taking care of them will require more resources and technological intervention than that of the current generation. The baby boomer retirees will be more culturally diverse. Therefore, the personnel being assigned for their care will require advanced training on multilingual skills and cultural competence. Their technological ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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