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Lifton Home Elevator: Too Cool for School!

May 18, 2018

101 Mobility, a one-stop shop for mobility and accessibility solutions, selling, installing, and servicing top-quality equipment from the nation’s leading manufacturers, announces the installation of the first Lifton Home Elevator in New Jersey.

See a time-lapse video installation of a 101 Mobility Home Elevator here:

This unique, modern alternative to stair lifts and old-fashioned residential elevators recently had its first New Jersey installation in Hopatcong, New Jersey.

While available in other states, the Lifton Home Elevator has only just been approved in New Jersey, due to New Jersey’s particularly rigid requirements for the installation of home elevators.

Different than the old-fashioned residential elevator, which is bigger, difficult to install, and requires a substantial amount of space (which most homeowners don’t have), and the stair lift which many see as unattractive and “un-cool,” the Lifton is the perfect solution for two widely divergent demographics: 1) today’s senior citizens, sometimes referred to as the “Rock and Roll Generation,” and 2) a much younger, hip and trendy generation, always on the lookout for the latest thing.

What these two generations have in common is their love of style.

The active, vibrant seniors who grew up in the Rock and Roll era, now in their 70s – 80s, like to think of themselves as the first really cool generation of seniors – discerning about fashion, music, food, and entertainment – and passionately pro-active about aging in place. This means they are good at finding solutions to protect their lifestyles – even before they need them.

According to Dave Muti, president of 101 Mobility, “Most of our clientele are senior citizens. The home staircase can become Mt. Everest. I’ve seen people literally go up and down on their hands and knees. Couple this with the determination of this generation of seniors to stay in their own homes, the Lifton is a perfect solution. It’s different than anything else on the market. It’s modern and cool. Owners are the envy of the bridge club. The grandkids love it. And it makes homes more marketable.”

The Lifton Home Elevator is a game changer:

It’s for the Rock and Roll Generation of seniors who don’t want products associated with getting old, like stairlifts
It is relatively easy to install usually one or two days. Traditional elevators are difficult to install and can take a week or longer.
Its design is sleek, modern, and reflective of the way the Rock and Roll Generation perceive themselves
It gives owners peace of mind that they can freely go from one floor to another without fear of falling or any other hesitations
It adds value to a house, making it more saleable and opening it up to a senior market
As an added benefit, the Lifton is a perfect dumbwaiter and can reduce injuries caused by carrying heavy items up and down stairs – like suitcases and vacuum cleaners.

The Lifton is the perfect solution for the Rock and Roll Generation as well as anybody who loves high quality, contemporary products combined with functional craftsmanship. And while the reason for installation may not be fun – the Lifton Home Elevator is undeniably cool – which is exactly how today’s seniors see themselves.

About 101 Mobility
101 Mobility North New Jersey is your one-stop-shop for all things that provide mobility and accessibility. From stair lifts, wheelchair ramps to platform lifts and beyond, our goal at 101 Mobility is to assist residents with their specific mobility and physical needs through quality products and exceptional service. In short, we help people, safely and effortlessly, get up and down stairs, and in and out of their homes and businesses.

Please visit our website at

Health Life News

Kick Isolation by Moving Closer to the Kids!

May 15, 2018

As families become more mobile, often spread across the country, isolation and loneliness among older adults has become a key concern. A New York Times article (“The New Retirement: Near the Kids”) highlighted a solution selected by a growing number of families: move closer to the kids.

In the article, Lisa Marsh Ryerson, president of the AARP Foundation, pointed out that family connections become more frequent and more personal when parents move closer to their adult children.

According to Freedonia Group analyst Jennifer Mapes-Christ, “The majority of consumers worry about who will take care of them and how much of a burden they will be on their families as they age. That means that Americans are more open than ever to hiring professional caregivers or moving to a live-in elder care facility when such services are available and they can afford it. However, even if they aren’t providing the care themselves, adult children are more comfortable having Mom and Dad nearby, so they can be assured that their parents are well and receiving quality care.”

Holly Bowers Ruben, one of the adult children profiled whose mother moved closer to her, said “Peace of mind – that has been a huge gift.”

Mapes-Christ points out, “Many people choose to move to warm weather places – including resort-type parts of Florida and Arizona – shortly after retirement for more carefree living. However, as they begin to have trouble living independently, a growing share of those people are choosing to return to their home areas or to where their adult children have settled. This tends to encourage growth in places that are less typically thought of as retirement destinations.”

Furthermore, Mapes-Christ added, “Economically vibrant urban areas are seeing these gains. Increasingly, elder care service providers are constructing senior living communities and expanding home healthcare businesses in areas where younger generations have moved for their own job opportunities.”

About The Freedonia Group – The Freedonia Group, a division of, is a leading international industrial research company publishing more than 100 studies annually. Since 1985 we have provided research to customers ranging in size from global conglomerates to one-person consulting firms. More than 90% of the industrial companies in the Fortune 500 use Freedonia Group research to help with their strategic planning. Each study includes product and market analyses and forecasts, in-depth discussions of important industry trends, and market share information. Studies can be purchased at

Health News

New Guidelines for Screening for Prostate Cancer

May 11, 2018

The American Urological Association (AUA), today released the following statement in response to the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) final recommendation statement on Screening for Prostate Cancer. The statement below is attributed to AUA President J. Brantley Thrasher, MD, FACS:

The AUA commends the USPSTF for its decision to maintain its upgraded recommendations for prostate cancer screening in men ages 55 to 69. The final recommendations released today support screening in this age group and are in direct alignment with the AUA’s clinical practice guideline and guidelines from most other major physician groups – including the American Cancer Society, the American College of Physicians, the American Society of Clinical Oncology and the National Comprehensive Cancer Network – all of which advocate for shared decision making.

We agree with the USPSTF that African American men and men with a family history of prostate cancer are at an increased risk of developing the disease and that they should discuss with their physicians the benefits and risks of testing in order to make a shared, informed decision.

Regarding the USPSTF’s advice to not screen men over age 70: While we agree that a number of older men are not candidates for prostate cancer testing, we believe that select older, healthier men may garner a benefit. We urge those men to talk with their doctors about whether prostate cancer testing is right for them. Like the USPSTF, the AUA acknowledges there is limited evidence surrounding the benefits and risks of prostate cancer testing in men over 70, and we too support the call for increased research to fill the evidence gaps and better inform recommendations for these individuals.

The USPSTF final recommendation statements on the screening for prostate cancer – and the process used to develop them – demonstrate the value of involving specialists, patients and the medical community in creating reasonable and thoughtful clinical guidance that better aligns to and reflects the nation’s clinical and research landscapes. We thank the USPSTF for implementing strategies to solicit feedback from the community on its research plan; for engaging urologists to review the evidence report upon which these recommendations were based; and for taking into account comments from the prostate cancer community in finalizing this guidance. These improved efforts illustrate how the USPSTF, specialists, patients and the community as a whole must align resources and continue to work together to improve the health of all Americans.

Furthermore, we applaud Representative Marsha Blackburn (R-TN-7), Representative Bobby Rush (D-IL-1) and other leading lawmakers who have encouraged USPSTF to adopt a more transparent process that is inclusive of disease experts and other interested stakeholders. Legislation is needed to ensure transparency and regular input in the process from interested stakeholders and specialists with appropriate expertise.

About the American Urological Association: Founded in 1902 and headquartered near Baltimore, Maryland, the American Urological Association is a leading advocate for the specialty of urology, and has more than 21,000 members throughout the world. The AUA is a premier urologic association, providing invaluable support to the urologic community as it pursues its mission of fostering the highest standards of urologic care through education, research and the formulation of health policy.

Arts & Entertainment News

Brookdale’s Popular “Celebrate Aging Film Festival”

May 8, 2018
Marvalene and MaryDonna, Brookdale's Celebrate Aging Film Festival award winners (PRNewsfoto/Brookdale Senior Living)

Brookdale Senior Living residents are getting ready for their close-ups! The senior living provider has set the first Wednesday of October as the date for its second annual “Celebrate Aging Film Festival” and residents are already at work creating their entries. To change the perception of aging, residents and associates from each of Brookdale’s about 1,000 communities are invited to submit a five-minute short film, made using only an iPad, which paints aging in a positive light. Brookdale will honor finalists and reveal the winners during a red carpet award ceremony at the historic Franklin Theatre in Franklin, Tennessee on October 3.

“I am still amazed at what our residents and associates accomplished last year,” said Carol Cummings, Brookdale’s senior director of Optimum Life Engagement. “We had so many inspiring entries that we had to create an additional category, The Courage Award, to honor films that tell the story of courageous older adults who are living life to the fullest in the face of significant challenges. I can’t wait to see what our communities come up with this year.”

Brookdale created the film festival to help change the perception of aging by communicating a positive, uplifting message that celebrates aging. The project is an opportunity for residents and associates to work together creatively using the iPad technology at each of the senior living communities.

“We are out to change a lot of stereotypes of what it means to get older and we think the film festival is doing just that,” said Cummings.

Brookdale communities have until July 1 to submit their film. From there, the submitted films will be narrowed down to nominees for Best Picture, Best Writing, Best Acting, Best Technical Design and the Courage Award. Nominees for each category will be announced July 30. The finalists are all eligible for the Ecolab’s People Choice Award, voted on by the public. In 2017, 74 communities submitted films, with nine receiving nominations and five taking home winning trophies.

Ecolab, Brookdale’s trusted partner in providing clean, safe and healthy environments for its residents, generously sponsors Brookdale’s Celebrate Aging Film Festival.

About Brookdale
Brookdale Senior Living Inc. is the leading operator of senior living communities throughout the United States. The Company is committed to providing senior living solutions primarily within properties that are designed, purpose-built and operated to provide the highest-quality service, care and living accommodations for residents. Brookdale operates independent living, assisted living, and dementia-care communities and continuing care retirement centers, with approximately 1,023 communities in 46 states and the ability to serve approximately 101,000 residents as of December 31, 2017. Through its ancillary services program, the Company also offers a range of, home health, hospice and outpatient therapy services. For more Brookdale news, go to

About Ecolab
A trusted partner at more than one million customer locations, Ecolab (ECL) is the global leader in water, hygiene and energy technologies and services that protect people and vital resources. With 2014 sales of $14 billion and 47,000 associates, Ecolab delivers comprehensive solutions and on-site service to promote safe food, maintain clean environments, optimize water and energy use and improve operational efficiencies for customers in the food, healthcare, energy, hospitality and industrial markets in more than 170 countries around the world. For more Ecolab news and information, visit

Life News

New Taskforce Tackles Hunger Within West Virginia’s Senior Community

May 8, 2018

Hunger affects all 55 counties and more than 275,000 residents in West Virginia, including seniors. Four organizations — Alderson Broaddus University (ABU), Sodexo, The Campus Kitchens Project, and AARP Foundation — formed a taskforce to address food insecurity within West Virginia’s senior community, and today announced plans to launch a new initiative this fall to fight hunger with opportunities for student involvement. The program is made possible through a grant awarded by AARP Foundation to Alderson Broaddus University.

Alderson Broaddus will use the funds to launch its chapter of The Campus Kitchens Project, the nation’s leading nonprofit organization empowering young people to fight food waste and hunger. Campus Kitchens will place a Fellow at the university to launch the program and ensure its success over the first two years, including student volunteer opportunities.

“Alderson Broaddus University is delighted to collaborate with our dining partner, Sodexo, and the nationally recognized Campus Kitchens Project in addressing the issue of hunger for elderly people in Barbour County, West Virginia. Equally satisfying is the fact that AARP Foundation is supporting us in this ambitious and much-needed endeavor,” said Dr. James (Tim) Barry, president of Alderson Broaddus University. “Rural poverty — in particular, elderly rural poverty and hunger — is an issue that is endemic to West Virginia, particularly in Barbour County. The University has identified rural hunger as a critical need that must be addressed. In our discussions with Sodexo, we believe that we have the beginnings of not only a partnership but a collective way to address the issue of hunger in Barbour County with the support of our Campus Kitchens student volunteers. We look forward to critically examining the programmatic needs for this and developing a successful and engaged program.”

“Sodexo has a longstanding commitment to end hunger and believes in the power of young people in fighting this critical cause,” said Sodexo district manager Michael Greenfield. “For more than 10 years, our Stop Hunger Foundation has invested in young people to help them start and grow innovative solutions to hunger. In 2017, our foundation provided nearly 4.1 million meals for 2.3 million people in local communities around the world and supported the growth of programs like The Campus Kitchens Project. We are glad to extend our partnership with Alderson Broaddus University beyond campus dining halls to provide hunger relief for seniors in the local community.”

On more than 60 university and high school campuses across the country, student volunteers with The Campus Kitchens Project transform unused food from dining halls, grocery stores, restaurants, and farmers markets into meals for people experiencing hunger. In the last academic year, Campus Kitchens across the country recovered over 1.3 million pounds of wasted food and served 350,000 meals.

“We’re thrilled to expand our Campus Kitchens network to Alderson Broaddus and into West Virginia,” said Dan Abrams, director of The Campus Kitchens Project. “Young, eager student volunteers at Campus Kitchens across the country are developing sustainable solutions to hunger and food waste that have a real and lasting impact on those struggling with food insecurity. We look forward to seeing how the Alderson Broaddus team, along with supportive partners like Sodexo and AARP Foundation, will replicate this model in Barbour County to serve disadvantaged seniors and others in need.”

“Thousands of people over age 65 in West Virginia are living in poverty,” said Emily Allen, senior vice president of programs at AARP Foundation. “AARP Foundation works to end senior poverty by helping vulnerable older adults build economic opportunity and social connectedness. This taskforce initiative in West Virginia will forge an intergenerational partnership — a win for student volunteers and a win for the senior community.”

The taskforce will hold meetings this spring to create an action plan for the fall launch. Other organizations will join the initiative and serve as feeding venues.

About Alderson Broaddus University

For more than 144 years, Alderson Broaddus University has been providing a quality education for its students. Overlooking the picturesque Tygart River Valley in Phillipi, West Virginia, Alderson Broaddus University students learn and grown in a faith-based learning community. Alderson Broaddus University is a health-related and professional education institution. Alderson Broaddus University is affiliated with the American Baptist Churches, USA, and the West Virginia Baptist Convention.

About Sodexo North America

Sodexo North America is part of a global, Fortune 500 company with a presence in 80 countries. Sodexo is a leading provider of integrated food, facilities management and other services that enhance organizational performance, contribute to local communities and improve quality of life of 15 million customers in corporate, education, healthcare, senior living, sports and leisure, government and other environments daily. The company employs 133,000 people at 13,000 sites in all 50 U.S. states and Canada and indirectly supports tens of thousands of additional jobs through its annual purchases of $9.2 billion in goods and services from small to large American businesses. In support of local communities across the U.S., the Sodexo Stop Hunger Foundation has contributed close to $30 million over the past 20 years to help feed children in America impacted by hunger. To learn more about Sodexo, visit and connect with us on Facebook and @SodexoUSA on Twitter.

About AARP Foundation

AARP Foundation works to end senior poverty by helping vulnerable older adults build economic opportunity and social connectedness. As AARP’s charitable affiliate, we serve AARP members and nonmembers alike. Bolstered by vigorous legal advocacy, we spark bold, innovative solutions that foster resilience, strengthen communities and restore hope.

About The Campus Kitchens Project

Founded in 2001, The Campus Kitchens Project is a national program of DC Central Kitchen that empowers student volunteers to fight hunger and food waste in their community. On over 60 university and high school campuses across the country, students transform unused food from dining halls, grocery stores, restaurants, and farmers’ markets into meals for people experiencing hunger. By taking the initiative to run a community kitchen, students develop entrepreneurial and leadership skills, along with a commitment to serve their community, that they will carry with them into future careers. Each Campus Kitchen implements innovative Beyond the Meal programming that uses food as a tool to end systemic poverty. Across the country, local campus kitchens are building community gardens, organizing mobile food pantries, filling backpacks for after school children, and educating the public on SNAP benefits and nutrition. To learn more about our work or bring The Campus Kitchens Project to your school, visit


Vast Majority of California Voters Favor Candidates for Governor with Plan to Serve State’s Fast-Growing Senior Population

May 3, 2018

More than two-thirds of California voters feel the state is not prepared to address the health and social service needs of its fast-growing senior population, and that sentiment could sway votes in the race for governor, according to a new poll commissioned by two California-based senior-focused nonprofit organizations. California is heading for a crisis in caring for its older population if the state and next governor do not act now to create effective and cost-efficient policies.

In proportions rarely seen in statewide opinion research, more than 80 percent of California voters say that when it comes time to vote, they are more likely to support a gubernatorial candidate who has a plan for aging Baby Boomers and seniors that effectively addresses their growing demand for healthcare, dental and social services.

“Now is the time for California to stand with our rapidly growing senior population,” said Shelley Lyford, CEO and president of West Health. “It’s time for candidates running for governor and other statewide offices to develop a concrete plan to provide for the healthcare needs of vulnerable seniors. And it’s time for voters to hold politicians accountable at the ballot box in November.”

According to the Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC), the state’s 65-and-older population is projected to grow nearly 90 percent, or by four million more people, by 2030, which spans the next three gubernatorial terms.

“In a time when we see so much political polarization, it’s encouraging to see that California Democrats, Republicans and independent voters of all ages can all agree on one thing: We need to provide better care for our older adults,” said Bruce Chernof, MD, CEO and president of The SCAN Foundation. “Now we must work together to enact policies and create an environment that reflects our shared commitment to the well-being of older Californians.”

This poll comes as West Health and The SCAN Foundation launch “We Stand With Seniors…Will You?” a public awareness and education campaign on the specific challenges seniors and their families face in accessing high-quality, affordable healthcare, dental care and supportive services and the cost to the state if these challenges are not addressed.

In the months leading up to the election, the campaign will convene senior policymakers for educational forums throughout the state and conduct periodic surveys on how well the gubernatorial candidates are addressing the issues.

Summary of Poll Findings

67 percent of voters feel that California is NOT prepared to care for its aging population.
87 percent of voters agree that providing dental care for seniors is as important as access to healthcare.
83 percent of voters would be more likely to support a gubernatorial candidate who has a vision and a long-term investment plan to address the increasing demand for senior services for California’s aging population.
82 percent of voters are more likely to support a gubernatorial candidate committed to making high-quality healthcare for seniors more accessible and affordable.
80 percent of voters support the state investing in caregiver programs that assist those who care for senior family members.
79 percent of voters support the state making in-home healthcare service investments that allow seniors to age successfully in place, including medication delivery, telehealth and house calls.

The poll also showed voters want state legislators to support seniors. Eighty-two percent are more likely to support legislative action that improves seniors’ access to dental care, a benefit Medicare does not provide. Voters also want to see improvements in independent living services, mental and behavioral health and other senior services.

“California can lead the country on aging and senior issues, just as it has on so many other issues,” said Tim Lash, chief strategy officer of West Health. “There is tremendous support for it across the state. Now we need a governor who will tap into that support and prioritize the needs of California’s aging population now and into the future.”

Survey Methodology
From Friday, January 12, 2018 through Sunday, January 15, 2018, J. Wallin Opinion Research conducted a telephone survey of voters throughout California. One thousand voters were interviewed using live, professional interviewers, speaking both English and Spanish languages and calling both mobile and landlines. The sample is stratified (the demographic composition of our results matches the demographic composition of the state’s voting population) and has a margin of error of +/-3.1 percent (95 percent confidence interval).

About We Stand With Seniors
West Health and The SCAN Foundation’s “We Stand With Seniors …Will You?” public awareness and education campaign focuses on the specific challenges seniors and their families face in accessing high-quality, affordable healthcare, dental care and supportive services and the cost to the state if these challenges are not addressed. Visit for more information. Keep up with #StandWithSeniors on social media via Facebook @WeStandWithSeniors and Twitter @WeStandWSeniors.

About West Health
Solely funded by philanthropists Gary and Mary West, West Health includes the nonprofit and nonpartisan Gary and Mary West Health Institute and Gary and Mary West Foundation in San Diego, and the Gary and Mary West Health Policy Center in Washington, D.C. These organizations are working together toward a shared mission dedicated to enabling seniors to successfully age in place with access to high-quality, affordable health and support services that preserve and protect their dignity, quality of life and independence. For more information, visit and follow @westhealth.

About The SCAN Foundation
The SCAN Foundation is an independent public charity dedicated to creating a society where older adults can access health and supportive services of their choosing to meet their needs. Our mission is to advance a coordinated and easily navigated system of high-quality services for older adults that preserve dignity and independence. For more information, visit and follow @TheSCANFndtn.

Finances News Practicalities of Living

Financial Impact on Seniors From Recent Changes in Social Security and Medicare

May 3, 2018

Bad news from HealthView Services highlights the combined financial impact of recent changes to Social Security and Medicare that will increase future health care costs and reduce retiree benefits in a new white paper. The paper shows that an average healthy 55-year-old couple earning a combined $140,000 today will, at retirement in 10 years, see a projected total impact of $158,000 in today’s dollars, the result of $122,000 in higher surcharges and the loss of over $36,000 in potential lifetime Social Security benefits.

The new HealthView Services report, “Why Recent Updates to Medicare and Social Security Matter“, details the bottom-line implications for retirees of seven changes to Medicare Means Testing, Social Security Cost of Living Adjustments (COLAs), and Social Security claiming strategies, the most recent of which were implemented in January and announced in February 2018.

“Taken on their own, each of these relatively low-profile changes to Social Security and Medicare have not generally been considered particularly significant or were only believed to impact wealthy Americans,” said Ron Mastrogiovanni, Founder & CEO of HealthView Services. “In this report, we show their collective financial impact on individual retirees’ budgets, and why retirees should anticipate the continued reduction in the value of benefits and increases in their costs.”

Among the changes that have quietly passed under the radar are those to income thresholds at which Americans will be subject to Medicare surcharges. As of February 2018, in the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018, a new sixth means testing bracket was added to the existing surcharge brackets. This increases the surcharges for those earning more than $500,000 in Modified Adjusted Gross Income.

Although this will impact very few retirees, a more fundamental change introduced at the same time was a delay in the implementation of indexing these brackets to inflation from 2020 to 2028. By postponing indexing for eight more years, as income grows over time more Americans will have to pay surcharges which will increase Medicare Part B and Part D premiums by an average of 36 to 203 percent. This will impact many future retirees. The paper shows a 38-year-old couple each earning $45,000 will have to pay an additional $218,000 (in today’s dollars) in lifetime Medicare surcharges in retirement. If the brackets were to have been indexed as planned in 2020, the couple would have faced no surcharges.

The February changes follow the lowering of Medicare surcharge brackets three to five, which took effect on January 1, 2018. These changes were part of the 2015 “Doc Fix” legislation passed by Congress. As a result, some individuals moved from the third into the fourth bracket, and all fourth bracket beneficiaries moved into the fifth bracket, increasing the surcharges they would have to pay.

For a 40-year-old man currently earning $93,000 today, who receives an average annual salary increase of 3% until retirement at 65, the change in brackets will lead to an additional 55% surcharge on Parts B and D. This will amount to an increase in projected surcharges of $57,000 in today’s dollars ($173,000 in future value). This assumes surcharges will never be indexed to inflation. What’s more, with a two-year look-back policy, for those currently impacted by the changes to income brackets, they will be assessed on 2016 income, rather than 2018 income.

The report also outlines the financial implications of changes over the last three years to Social Security COLAs and the impact of the “hold harmless rule”. With a zero COLA in 2015 and 0.3% increase in 2016, it notes the limited benefit to retirees from the 2% COLA increase in October 2017. Although many retirees had previously been held harmless from the rise in Medicare Part B premiums, the increase in COLA meant they are now subject to these higher costs.

Putting this in context, an average 68-year-old couple receiving their first significant Social Security increase in two years in 2018 will spend 96% of their additional COLA benefit (over $510 in 2018) on readjusted Part B premiums.

The report notes that the effective elimination of the “File & Suspend” and “File Restricted” Social Security strategies in 2016, will cost an average 58-year-old American couple $37,000 in today’s dollars ($72,000 future value) in lost potential benefits.

“Given the pressure on the Medicare and Social Security Trust Funds from increased longevity and greater numbers of retirees, we can expect on-going adjustments to these programs,” added Mastrogiovanni. “Retirees should expect to see more incremental changes to reduce the value of benefits and increase costs. As this paper reveals, in combination, these small changes will have a big financial impact.”

HealthView Services draws upon 70 million health care cases, actuarial, government and economic data to project retirement health care costs. The firm’s rigorous bottom-up approach integrates specific variables – including health status, age, gender, income, and state of residence – that will drive future health care costs. The final calculations draw upon and are consistent with, government health care inflation forecasts.

HealthView Services ( is the leading provider of retirement health care cost data, Social Security optimization, and long-term care retirement planning tools for financial advisors. HealthWealthLink, the company’s signature service, is an integrated retirement planning tool that assists financial advisors in preparing personalized estimates of retirement health care costs and associated strategies designed to achieve clients’ retirement goals.

Life News Practicalities of Living

Immigration Issues as They Affect Employment in the Elder Care Industry

March 30, 2018

One of the top issues in the news recently is immigration, with changes in protected status for immigrants from countries such as Haiti, El Salvador, Nicaragua, and Honduras; uncertainty for undocumented immigrants who arrived as children; limitations on immigration from several predominantly Muslin countries; and potential changes to family reunification processes.

The New York Times highlighted the impact of immigration on the elder care industry, both official structured agencies and the larger informal direct employment segment.

Increasingly, direct caregiving job openings are attracting fewer candidates. A growing economy has led to native-born Americans opting instead for better paying, less physically demanding work in other fields. This leaves openings often filled by immigrants, many of whom have increasingly uncertain status.

PHI (Protected Health Information) points out that one in four workers in nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and home care agencies are foreign-born. Shares are thought to be even higher in the informal sector. In states such as California, Florida, New Jersey, and New York, more than 40 percent of direct care workers are foreign-born.

According to Freedonia Group analyst Jennifer Mapes-Christ, “the formal elder care industry will require nearly 6.1 million employees by 2021 to accommodate the growing need for these services. This need will be driven largely by an aging population, particularly as the large baby boomer demographic advances into age cohorts that require a greater level of care.”

She continued, “Many consumers worry about who will take care of them and how much of a burden they will be on their families as they age. As a result, Americans are more open than ever to hiring professional caregivers when it is available and they can afford it.”

Mapes-Christ added, “However, finding, hiring, retaining, and supporting staff is an ongoing concern for elder care services providers. Employee turnover is one of the largest issues facing most of these service providers. The physical and emotional demands of the job, coupled with a lack of professional advancement opportunities, are the most oft-cited reasons for this turnover. Changes in immigration policy will affect the size of the pool of potential employees, possibly resulting in service shortages, particularly in rural areas, or wages hikes that would drive up costs if providers are unable to attract enough qualified workers.”

Additional analysis of employment in the US elder care industry can be found in the following Freedonia report: Elder Care Services in the US.

For more information:

Health News Practicalities of Living

Cannabis Safe and Effective for Regular Use in the Elderly

February 21, 2018

A new published clinical study out of Israel offers scientific evidence that the therapeutic use of cannabis can be a safe and effective treatment for elderly people, and is often a factor leading to the decreased use of other drugs, including opioids.

The groundbreaking article, “Epidemiological characteristics, safety and efficacy of medical cannabis in the elderly” published on February 7, 2018 in the European Journal of Internal Medicine, is the first of its kind. The study surveyed patients above 65 years of age who received medical cannabis at Tikun Olam clinics in Israel from January 2015 to October 2017. All 2,736 patients, with a median age of 74.5 years, were prescribed one or more of Tikun Olam’s proprietary cannabis strains, each developed over a number of years to address specific symptoms. The main strains used in the study were Erez, (53.2%), Avidekel (33.4%), Alaska (25.7%), and Midnight (20.4%).

The most common indications for cannabis treatment were pain (66.6%) and cancer 60.8%). After six months of treatment, 93.7% of the respondents reported improvement in their condition and the reported pain level was reduced by half — from a median of 8 on a scale of 0–10 to a median of 4. Adverse side effects were minor and rare and included dizziness (9.7%) and dry mouth (7.1%).

Importantly, after six months, 18.1% of the patients reduced their dose of opioid analgesics — or stopped using them entirely.

The largest supplier of medical cannabis in Israel, Tikun Olam partnered with Israel’s Soroka University Medical Center, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem for the study. Bernie Sucher, chief executive officer of Tikun Olam Global LLC, said, “This study is an unprecedented affirmation by the scientific community of the efficacy of medical marijuana in the elderly. These people are arguably the most medically vulnerable population and already a large and growing proportion of the users of medical cannabis.”

“This pioneering clinical study on the use of cannabis in the geriatric population is the first step in finding safer, and less toxic medications for use in our elderly populations,” Sucher added. “We are proud to have partnered with the scientific and academic communities for this release, and ongoing analysis and study will be a significant factor in improving and developing new cannabis products in both the traditional and the pharmaceutical markets.”

About Tikun Olam
Tikun Olam (“repair the world” in Hebrew) is the world’s leading cannabis brand and globally recognized as the pioneer of modern medical cannabis. The company’s global mission is to research, develop and provide efficacious, data-based cannabis treatments to help sufferers. Operating as a commercial venture for over 10 years, Tikun Olam’s products have been used since 2010 in ongoing clinical trials in Israel’s regulated medical cannabis market, treating over 10,000 patients for a variety of symptoms of medical conditions such as Cancer, PTSD, AIDS, epilepsy, Crohn’s Disease/Colitis, multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, chronic pain and neuropathy. Through this access to patients, medical personnel and data collection, Tikun Olam has developed multiple proprietary strains, including the first-ever, high-CBD, “high-less” strain Avidekel™, its high-THC strain Alaska™, and its “one-to-one” CBD/THC strain Midnight™. Tikun Olam’s U.S. operations, established in 2015 as T.O. Global LLC, are a joint venture with Tikun Olam Ltd. (Israel). Tikun Olam also operates similar partnerships in Canada, Australia, United Kingdom and South Africa.

Finances News

Funding Our Future: A New Campaign for Improving Retirement Security

February 20, 2018

The Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC) and personal finance expert Ric Edelman announced today the launch of a new initiative, “Funding Our Future: A Campaign for America’s Retirement Security,” to raise awareness and drive action around one of the biggest financial challenges of our time.

Millions of working Americans face the risk of outliving their savings, and a great many lack access to retirement savings plans at the workplace, all while the Social Security Trust Fund faces depletion by 2034. The Funding Our Future campaign will educate policymakers and the American public about these issues, explaining why immediate attention is essential.

The campaign’s goals are to make saving easier for Americans of all ages, help retirees transform their nest eggs into a lifetime of income, and save America’s Social Security system — not only for the millions of seniors relying on its benefits today, but also for future generations. Partners of the campaign will provide educational resources, informing the public about these key issues and why they should get involved.

“We need to take action to improve America’s retirement security before it’s too late,” Ric Edelman, founder and executive chairman of Edelman Financial Services, said. “Through this campaign and partnership, we encourage all Americans to call on their representatives in Congress, to convince them to tackle the problems facing our country’s retirement system so we can improve the well-being of millions of current and future retirees.”

“All Americans — from millennials to baby boomers, those who live in cities and those who live in rural areas — deserve the opportunity and tools to pursue a secure retirement. As longevity increases, these challenges only grow more critical,” Jason Grumet, BPC president, said. “We are creating this coalition to bring attention to an issue that affects the lives of all Americans and show that constructive policy solutions exist.”

Joining BPC and Edelman in this campaign to inform the public and policymakers about retirement security and to make the issue a priority are:

The Aspen Institute Financial Security Program
BPC Action
The Employee Benefit Research Institute
Prosperity Now
The Women’s Institute For A Secure Retirement

Funding Our Future looks forward to adding new partners to this coalition in the coming months.