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 …

Across the States: Profiles of Long-Term Services and Supports

A major demographic shift is happening. The ages 85+ population is projected to triple between 2015 and 2050. In comparison, the population younger than age 65 will increase by only 12 percent. The growth of the 85+ age group is projected to significantly outpace all other groups once baby boomers begin turning age 85 in 2031, marking the beginning of boomer-driven 85+ population growth for the following two decades. That has significant implications. The 85+ cohort is the most likely …

Social Security, Medicare Anniversaries Remind Voters of Important Issues in Pivotal Election Year

This summer marks another successful anniversary for Social Security and Medicare as Social Security turns 83 and Medicare turns 53. Social Security and Medicare remain critical to the economic and health security of Americans, and although the programs remain strong, challenges lay ahead for the long term. We can and must find bipartisan solutions to strengthen these vital programs, ensuring they can meet their promise for current and future generations. With regard to Medicare, we need to take further steps …

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, …

No, Medicare is Not Going Broke: Understanding the 2018 Medicare Trustees Report

The June 5 release of the Medicare Trustees Report has triggered alarm bell-style media headlines. Dozens of news reports about Medicare’s worsening financial outlook have painted a bleak picture—some bleaker than others, with one boldface headline announcing, “Medicare will go broke three years earlier than expected.” The “go broke” headline was referring to the report’s projection that the trust fund that pays for hospital services, called the Hospital Insurance (or Part A) trust fund, will be depleted in 2026, three …

As Medicare Rolls Out New Cards, Fraudsters Roll Out New Scams

If you are one of America’s 55 million Medicare beneficiaries (or, if someone in your life is), you need to know about a big, POSITIVE change coming. Starting this month, the U.S. government is mailing out new Medicare cards that have been redesigned to help prevent identity theft. New enrollees will be among the first to get the cards. Current enrollees will get theirs over the next year. The biggest change you’ll notice is that your Social Security number will …