Senate Transportation Bill Promotes Safety for Pedestrians and All Road Users

We must make our streets safer! Today in our country a pedestrian suffers an injury every eight minutes and one is killed every two hours! That’s been an upward trend in recent years. In the decade from 2003 to 2012, more than 47,000 people nationwide died while walking on our streets, 16 times the number who died in natural disasters during the same period. More than 676,000 pedestrians were injured over the same decade. These tragedies happen to individuals of …

New Bill in Congress Aims to Support Family Caregivers

Forty million Americans care for their older parents, spouses and other loved ones to help them live independently, at home, each and every day — I am one of them. We family caregivers help with bathing and dressing, transportation, providing meals, and much more. We even handle complex medical tasks like wound care or giving injections. Today, we are an essential part of the U.S. health care system. The unpaid care family caregivers provide is valued at about $470 billion …

Congress Approves Bill Bolstering Medicare Patients’ Hospital Rights

The U.S. Senate unanimously approved legislation Monday night requiring hospitals across the nation to tell Medicare patients when they receive observation care but have not been admitted to the hospital. It’s a distinction that’s easy to miss until patients are hit with big medical bills after a short stay. The vote follows overwhelming approval in the U. S. House of Representatives in March. The legislation is expected to be signed into law by President Barack Obama, said its House sponsor, …

Can’t Use Your FSA or HSA to Buy Over-the-Counter Drugs? AARP Is Working on That

It’s no secret that chronic pain is a common problem among older adults. According to the National Institutes of Health, 50 percent of older adults who live on their own suffer from chronic pain, and that number jumps to 75 percent or higher for seniors living in care facilities. Over-the-counter (OTC) medicines provide older adults with a trusted first line of defense against pain and allow them to manage their symptoms from the comfort of their own home without having …

Older Americans Act Receives Senate Approval – Now for the House

In the same week as its 50th anniversary, the Senate finally renewed the Older Americans Act (OAA). Thanks to the bipartisan support of Senators Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), Patty Murray (D-Wash.), Richard Burr (R-N.C.) and Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), the Older Americans Act is moving forward after 5 years of inaction. Appropriately timed with the White House Conference on Aging held earlier last week, the OAA reauthorization addresses AARP’s core concern for any legislation to protect, nourish and sustain our nation’s older …

Social Security Outlook Improves, but Disability Needs Urgent Action

The financial health of Social Security has improved slightly in the past year, with the system expected to exhaust its reserves to pay benefits in 2034, a year later than previously projected, according to the 2015 Social Security Trustees Report, released July 22. At that time, if Congress has taken no action, Social Security will have enough payroll taxes coming in to cover 79 percent of promised benefits for another 56 years, the report said. The annual report forecasts the …