Silver Sands

The life expectancy for average Americans is longer than ever before - 78 years for a child born in 2007 versus 71 who was born in 1970, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That's the good news, and it's been evolving over decades. Until recently, however, that positive change has come with a less happy corollary: More aging Americans are entering long-term care facilities, where they cope with basic issues of dignity such as incontinence, and independence, like the ability to choose their own waking and meal times.
If you would like to get a Social Security Statement, which provides estimates of your future benefits, it is now available online at www.socialsecurity.gov. "Our new online Social Security Statement is simple, easy-to-use and provides people with estimates they can use to plan for their retirement," said Michael J. Astrue, Commissioner of Social Security. "The online Statement also provides estimates for disability and survivors benefits, making the Statement an important financial planning tool. People should get in the habit of checking their online Statement each year, around their birthday, for example."
Overwhelming economic, familial and emotional pressures may be testing the tradition of Caribbean Americans taking care of elderly family members who reside in the United States. While looking after elderly relatives in the home is a hallmark in most Caribbean countries, immediate and extended family members tied to that job in the U.S. are finding it more difficult to cope. The idea of placing a mother, grandmother or grandfather in a nursing home is foreign to many raised in the Caribbean. It is seen as a mark of respect, honor and responsibility for adult children to care of their aging parents in a nurturing home.
Today, physicians are celebrating the anniversary of Medicare, the federal program that provides insurance coverage to our nation's seniors. “Medicare has provided an invaluable service to our country's seniors by providing them with secure health care, said Dr. Alice Chen, internal medicine physician and the Executive Director of Doctors for America. “And now, thanks to the Affordable Care Act, we are seeing improvements to Medicare that will help seniors even more. The Affordable Care Act has brought a number of important benefits to senior citizens since it was passed in 2010. These include free preventives services such as mammograms, flu shots, diabetes and colon cancer screening.  Millions of seniors around the country have benefited from these reforms.
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