Elderly Marketplace Braces for Voluminous Change

– The first wave of the so-called “baby boomers” reached the ripe old age of 65 last year. It is projected that by the time we reach the year 2030, approximately 20 percent of the U.S. population will be at least 65 years or older, which would be an increase of between 7 – 10 percent over today’s age group. In the same time period, the number of 85-year-olds will increase more than 50 percent and the number of 100-year-olds nearly triple.

– Statistics from the Alzheimer’s Association state that the number of Americans 65 years and older who have the disease is likely to increase from more than 5 million today to 13 million 40 years from now as large  numbers of boomers age.  Economic costs are expected to rise from $183 billion this year to more than $1 trillion by 2050.  As part of the National Alzheimer’s Project Act, the government recently announced a goal of finding a way to prevent and treat Alzheimer’s disease by 2025.  President Obama signed the law January 2011.

– By 2025, the number of those 65 and older with diabetes is projected to almost double to 10.6 million.

– 55 percent of all cancers are diagnosed in individuals 65 and older.

– A study by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services says that “people who reach age 65 will likely have a 40 percent chance of entering a nursing home. About 10 percent of the people who enter a nursing home will stay there five years or more. This year, about nine million men and women over the age of 65 will need eldercare. By 2020, 12 million older Americans will need eldercare. Most will be cared for at home; with family and friends as the sole caregivers for 70 percent of the elderly”. (source: Medicare.gov)

– The number of nursing homes in the United States has declined by almost 9 percent from 2000 to 2009. A big part of the explanation behind these numbers is financial. The cost of financing new construction represents a significant investment. The cost of care services is high. Making matters worse, last year the federal government also cut its reimbursement rates by 11 percent to nursing homes for Medicare patients—people released from hospitals to nursing homes who need short-term care to recover from injuries or acute illnesses. That’s a huge hit since Medicare payments are responsible for more than 20 percent of nursing home revenues.

Medicaid provides about 50 percent of revenues for nursing home, and most of the rest comes from private long-term care insurance and from people with sufficient financial resources to pay out of pocket. Once they can’t pay, Medicaid picks up only some of the tab, and most if not all nursing home facilities then start losing money on such patients. Futhermore, it is illegal for a Medicaid-certified nursing home to ask a patient to leave just because they run out of money.

Home Care is Part of the Solution 

Home Care Partners, LLC is a private duty homecare agency, headquartered and licensed in Massachusetts. We provide non-medical, in-home assistance and personalized care services to those seniors needing help and companionship in their daily activities and household functions. Our care staff is available on an hourly and daily basis (24 hour/day live-in care). The agency is bonded and insured.