Potential Overuse of Dementia Drugs Can Lead to High Prescription Drug Costs

Dementia is an increasingly prevalent condition that millions of families must deal with every day. It can be taxing—emotionally, physically, and financially—for all involved, and people are understandably looking for help wherever they can find it. However, there could be a big disconnect between how health care providers prescribe drugs used to treat the condition and what is supported by clinical evidence, a new AARP Public Policy Institute report finds. Dementia is defined as a loss of cognitive functioning—the ability …

‘Short-Term’ Health Plans No Longer Short-Term

On August 1, the Trump Administration released a final rule that will allow insurance companies to offer cheaper “short-term limited duration” health plans for longer periods of time. Short-term plans are cheap for a reason. The plans don’t comply with the Affordable Care Act (ACA), meaning they aren’t required to cover essential benefits and protect people with preexisting conditions, and they don’t have to adhere to community rating standards. Thus, while short-term plans have been available for years and may …

Fewer Jobs Added in July but Labor Force Participation Rates Remain Stable

Employment Overview Total nonfarm payroll grew by 157,000 jobs, down from 248,000 jobs (revised up from 213,000) in June, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) July Employment Situation Summary. The unemployment rate edged down to 3.9 percent.  Jobs were added in professional and business services, manufacturing, and health care. The labor force participation rate held steady at 62.9 percent and the number of unemployed decreased from 6.6 million in June to 6.3 million in July. The number of …

AARP DataExplorer Updates: Jump in Diabetes Prevalence among Hispanics

Diabetes is on the rise among Americans 50 years and older, and trends among older Hispanics are particularly noteworthy, according to recently released government data that the AARP Public Policy Institute has incorporated into its interactive research and data visualization tool AARP DataExplorer. In June, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released the latest wave of diabetes data from the physical examination component of its National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES). We combined the laboratory results with survey …

In Sync: Senior Safe Act, BankSafe Fight Financial Exploitation through Training

A new law signed by President Trump on May 24 is designed in part to strengthen protections for older Americans against financial exploitation and abuse. The Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act includes a provision, previously proposed as the Senior Safe Act, that extends immunity from lawsuits to financial institutions and insurance companies when reporting suspected cases of elder financial exploitation. Why is such an immunity important? Employees at these institutions are often the first line of defense …

Social Isolation: Detrimental to Older Adults’ Health and Costly to Medicare

July is Social Isolation Month at AARP. This month, we are calling attention to the millions of older adults across the nation who lack meaningful social contacts with family members, friends or neighbors.  Why the focus on isolation?  Because social isolation is associated with bad health consequences: For example, socially isolated older adults are more likely to have heart disease, infections, depression, and premature cognitive decline. What’s more, it significantly increases the risk of death  among older adults.  In fact, …