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Words 914
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Demographic Paper
Pedreed Anjahal
HCA 490
September 19, 2011
Michael Veal

Demographic Paper
It is a proven fact. With all the advances in modern health care, people are living longer. As someone starts to get older, they start feeling the consequences of aging and strive to find a healthier life style. Still, there comes a point when many people require the professional need of long term health care services. As healthy as today’s population is, illness is usually comes as something unexpected. Upon such an eventuality, a person may require some type of specialized health care needs.
With the Baby Boomer generation decides to retire or stops aging at a phenomenal rate, people requiring long term health care needs are on the rise still. People are living longer and their health care needs may be beyond that, which can be managed by family members.
Fortunately, within the current health care field there is a wide variety of systems available for helping to take care of an elderly family member. It is even possible for the family to take the elderly person into his or her home. Alternatively, the family may have to decide to place the elderly member in a nursing home for long-term care. Whichever choice is deemed best, it is always critically important that the elderly person feels comfortable in the environment in which he or she is placed (Feder, Komisar & Niefeld, 2000).
According to United States society census and demographics (2010), During the past century the United States has seen an incredible increase in the population of its elderly. In 1900, the number of Americans aged 65 and older was 3.1 million. In 2000, that number had reached a staggering 35 million. With the advent of new technologies and medicines, the persistence of this growth rate will continue. By 2020, the population aged 65 to 74 is estimated to increase by 74% (About the USA, 2010).
The world will feel the effects of an aging population. One of the fields that will be affected the most will be the health care industry. Baby Boomers are educated and have realistic expectations about their continued good health. The need for health care products, such as vitamins and anti-aging drug treatments, will be in great demand.
The need for doctors who is specializing in gerontology will also be in demand. Another area that will be impacted is the workforce. While Baby Boomers may be aging, their continued good health will stave off the necessity of retirement. This will impact the next generation who will have to compete with a more experienced employee base. One side effect that could become a serious issue is unexpected health issues with an elderly worker is the sudden onset of any health issues. This could prove to be very costly to an employer’s insurance plan.
The cost for caring for an elderly patient in a long-term health care facility currently averages around $75,000. That figure is expected to increase exponentially as a greater percentage of the population continues to require the necessity of such institutions in the years ahead. There will be a demand for long-term health care for an aging population that will double to 71.5 million persons by 2026 (Cornman & Carpenter, 2010). Inflation will continue unabated in the sense that as costs continues to rise, fewer and fewer of the elderly will be able to afford the kind of heath care that they need.
The elderly will start to face a wide variety of health issues, ranging from arthritis to diabetes, repertory problems to heart conditions. An elderly person will be more prone to injuries from falls as their bones loose calcium and become more brittle. As more and more elderly patients enter into long-term care, they will be introduced to more proactive wellness programs targeted at such health issues such as diet and physical activity.
As the population continues to age, there will be a greater need for services that will help in their quality of life. More and more, long-term care is coming to the forefront of marketing strategies. As company executives reach nearer to retirement age themselves, they are becoming aware that, sooner or later, either they or someone in their family will need these services.
Steps need to be taken now to keep long-term health care affordable for an elderly population who is dependent upon their retirement income and social security.
Only if our society begins today to address the issues of long-term health care can we hope to avoid a crisis that is only a decade or two away. The financial burden on families of the elderly could be staggering. It is already a fact that people are living longer and enjoying a greater quality of life. Still, illness and the infirmities of aging are inevitable. Only with education and guidance can the elderly be able to make better decisions about their future long-term health care.

About the USA, (2010). U.S. society census & demographics. Retrieved September 19, 2011 from
Cornman, J. M., & Carpenter, C. E. (2010). Long-Term Care Financing through the CLASS Act. Journal of Financial Service Professionals, 64(4), 29-32. Retrieved September 19, 2011 from EBSCOhost
Feder, J., Komisar, H.L., & Niefeld, M., (2000). Long term care in the United States: Health affairs, 19 (3), 2000: 40-56. doi:10.137/hlthaff.19.3.40

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