AARP Announces 2014 Advocacy Agenda: Across the States

AARP is fighting for older Americans and their families in states across the country, focused on the key issues they are facing, front-and-center, in their daily lives.  Our state advocacy work is driven by AARP’s state offices – located in every state, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and U.S. Virgin Islands – where we work with governors, state legislators, other policymakers and in collaboration with numerous community partners.  In 2014 AARP is focusing on: Supporting Family Caregivers AARP is …

Report Shows Americans Don’t Worry About Aging Population

“What? Me worry?” Those famous words of Mad Magazine’s fictitious Alfred E. Neuman seem to sum up the attitude Americans have about whether aging is a problem in this country. A just-released Pew Research Center global aging report asked residents of 21 countries if they thought the burgeoning number of older people was a “major problem” for their country and for themselves. In fact, the United States ranked No. 19, or two places from the lowest. Japanese and South Koreans, who …

Medicare Clarifies Rehab Coverage

You know how frustrating-no, make that infuriating-it can be to try to get reimbursed by Medicare for some rehabilitation services? You’re sure the rehab is helpful, but you can’t convince The Powers That Be. Why? It used to be that Medicare would pay only if the patient were improving.  Now, there’s been a healthy change in policy: You’ll be able to continue receiving physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech-language pathology services to prevent further deterioration (a.k.a. slow the decline) or …

Easing the Burdens on Family Caregivers: Are We Listening to Their Needs?

Family caregivers wear many hats. They help their loved ones cope with the bewildering complexity and fragmentation of the long-term services and supports (LTSS) system. They often provide daily care, such as help with bathing or dressing, providing transportation to medical appointments, handling bills, preparing special diets, or managing multiple complex medications. They often do these tasks on top of other work and family responsibilities. But who is listening to them? How are they coping? It is time to think …

2013 World Alzheimer Report Released

More than 35 million people worldwide have Alzheimer’s, with the number projected to double by 2030 and triple to 115 million by 2050.That’s why experts from around the globe are working together for better Alzheimer’s care and support for families. Their collective effort is evident in a report released today by Alzheimer’s Disease International, a group  of 79 Alzheimer’s associations. The annual report makes policy recommendations. Here are the highlights: Countries must develop National Dementia Plans to structure and fund …

Now’s the Time for a National Strategy to Support Family Caregivers

Those of us who work in the field of aging know that chronic illness, disability and frailty affect not only individuals, but also families. Nearly all my friends and coworkers have a story about the often costly, confusing and stressful experience of caring for their aging parents or another older relative or friend. This is the “new normal” of family care in the United States. It is up close and intensely personal, and often the system fails us, too. Most …