Unemployment Rate Unchanged at 3.7 percent in November

  Employment Overview The unemployment rate remained unchanged for the third consecutive month at 3.7 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) November Employment Situation Summary. The unemployment rate for those ages 55 and older edged up slightly to 2.9 percent. The economy added 155,000 jobs in November, down from 237,000 jobs added in October. The overall labor force participation rate was also unchanged at 62.9 percent while the rate for the 55+ increased slightly to 40.2 percent. …

Getting Real on Family Caregiving for Those with Dementia

If you haven’t seen this recent issue of AARP The Magazine, I encourage you to take a look at the cover story because it addresses topics that are front and center here at the AARP Public Policy Institute: family caregiving and dementia. The two A-list actors featured on the cover—Blythe Danner and Hilary Swank—play mother and daughter in a movie, “What They Had,” which highlights an issue of great importance. In the film, Danner’s character has Alzheimer’s, and the family …

Arkansas Work Requirement Leaves Thousands Without Health Insurance Coverage

Earlier this year, Arkansas became the first state to implement a  policy that—with some exemptions, including for people age 50 and older—requires adult Medicaid enrollees to work 80 hours every month at the state’s minimum wage. The policy has serious implementation problems, and is quickly ncreasing the number of uninsured in the state. In Compliance or Not—That is the Question Much of the issue stems around exemptions, compliance, and reporting requirements. In addition to working 80 hours every month, enrollees …

Hearing Aid Prices are Coming Down: Is Now the Time to Consider Getting One?

When my parents got into their 80s, sometimes I thought they were arguing because they were shouting. Then I realized they were just having trouble hearing each other. Unfortunately, this went on for some time because they did not have hearing aids. They said hearing aids were too expensive. Expense may soon become less of an issue for would-be purchasers. Recently, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the first hearing aid for sale over-the-counter (OTC). Allowing OTC sales of …

The Need for Relief: Pressures and Costs Facing Family Caregivers

November is National Family Caregiver month — when we recognize and honor the 40 million family caregivers across this country. Being a family caregiver — that is, providing unpaid care to a parent, spouse, partner, friend or other adult— is hard work. It can also be rewarding work. In most cases, it’s an opportunity to give back and offer a return on the loving investment someone once made in us. However, family caregiving can also be expensive. On average family …

What a Medicaid Funding Data Point Reveals about a State’s Long-Term Care

The AARP Public Policy Institute (PPI) recently released the 10th edition of Across the States: Profiles of Long-Term Services and Supports, a vital state reference report on long-term services and supports (LTSS) in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Indicative of the report’s relevance and importance is its staying power. PPI’s longest-running publication, Across the States has been published for the last 24 years. And now it is more important than ever. That is because the 85+ population—the …