Baby Boomer Health Care Crisis

The United States spends more on healthcare than any other nation in the world. We are the only wealthy, industrialized nation that doesn’t have a universal health care system. There have been ongoing debates regarding the poor access, efficiency, and quality yet the increasing costs. It was impossible to watch one democratic nominee presidential speech without the analysis of this crisis. What does this mean for the baby boomers that make up 27% of the total population?

It’s imperative that the current state of the health care industry be more affordable, stable, and safe for the millions of aging boomers. Over 60% of them who are employed have been diagnosed with at least one chronic health condition such as cancer, diabetes, and arthritis to name a few. 7 million of that group does not have health insurance or have been without it for a period of time since age 50. People with very good insurance receive the very best health care money can by, where as the people with poor insurance receive very little or no treatment at all.

The fact that America spends more money on health care costs than food is astounding. As more medical advances are being made, the more money that is being put towards it. Out of pocket costs for premiums and co payments have taken a huge chunk out of older workers household income. Self employed workers in this age bracket are being hit the hardest. Over half these entrepreneurs spent more than $3,600 on health care costs compared to only 16% of people covered by their employers.

Some baby boomers are concerned that there are not enough skilled people in the health care profession to properly treat all of them. Basically, the supply and demand model is not in their favor. Some suggestions might include doing away with the two-year wait list for disabled individuals to be covered by Medicare, let people get into Medicare early, helped by tax credits for people with low incomes, and add Medicare health accounts for expenses not covered by insurance. The road ahead is not well paved but I believe there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

Many Baby Boomers Choose Senior Retirement Communities As The Perfect Place To Live

We live in a world of options these days. And this has never been more true than with the amount of options for retirement living. Senior retirement communities are just one of a great variety of living facilities that are available to the generation of retiring baby boomers and they are one of the most popular.

Senior living communities are found in all of the state in the US. This is different than it used to be with almost all the retirement villages being located in either Arizona or Florida. Nothing wrong with either of those places, and thousands of retiring baby boomers choose to move to each of those states every year.

But if you are in the mind to live some place where it is not warm all the time, some place that the seasons change and you can look out the window and tell that it has changed, then the internet can be your very good assistant in finding the perfect retirement community for you.

Many times the boomer retirement communities are found on the outskirts of a larger city, like Mesa is located close to Phoenix. This allows the residents of the community to travel a short distance to the city to go out to restaurants or a movie without having to deal with the traffic congestion on a daily basis.

Senior retirement communities are often focused on a particular interest that many of the residents share. The game of golf is a very popular theme for many boomers living in these communities, although there are some that focus on tennis or horseback riding. In the case of these themed communities, many of the facilities and the community events are centered around those activities.

It isn’t that you can’t live there if you are not a golfer, or a rider or a tennis player; it’s just that it is good to be aware of this situation before you move there.

Most of the time there is no way to tell by looking at the community residences that these are retirement communities. Unless, of course, you think that fact is being given away by the well manicured lawns or the perfectly clean streets or the happy smiles on the faces of the residents as they are headed to the onsite restaurant for a delicious dinner.

Senior retirement communities nowadays are full of baby boomers who are very active and youthful thinking people who are not ready to give it all up and move in with their kids. And while that kind of arrangement can work for a lot of people, it does not work for everybody.

But retirement living in a community full of like minded people that you can share a meal with or a trip to the city, now that is something that makes retiring a really good thing.

Retiring Baby Boomer Dentists – Less Dentists, More Patients

The baby boomer generation were a massive group of people seeking professional jobs. They created an influx in many businesses including dentistry. Many of them went to medical school and entered the dentistry field. This changed the way people found dentists because of the amount of new practices opening.

The dentistry world became competitive through advertising and discounted offers on dental care. In addition, the number of clinics that were opening up increased, which gave local community members options when it came to finding a dentist. The rise of the baby boom population gave dental hygiene a boost and forced insurance companies to take notice and offer care. However, the baby boom generation is coming close to retirement age and there aren’t enough new dentists to replace the baby boomers.

The number of people who graduate from dentistry schools decline every year. In a few years when all of the baby boom generation is collecting social security, more and more dentist offices will be closing. This will cause an influx in some offices where clients have limited choices on where to go. Unfortunately, this doesn’t mean the best care is going to be a choice when it comes to finding a dentist. A main criterion for choosing a dentist will be based on location. Without competition from other local dentists, the price of dental care could skyrocket. A dentist with no one else to worry about could start charging any price they want because there is no one to tell him that he can’t.

If you think this is the old problem that is the result of the baby boomer generation getting older, you’re wrong. Dentists’ offices are going to be inundated with patients.

However, the baby boomer generation has an ever bigger effect on the dentistry market. They are clients as well. As they get older, their needs are going to change. The baby boomer generation has different problems. They are going to go from needing cleanings and basic dentistry to more severe problems that inflict many older people such as gum disease, dentures and other dental problems.

The truth is that half of the people that visits a doctor’s office are over the age of 45. This means that the older generation care as much about their health as anyone else. They are going taking a huge percentage of the dentist’s time and create a massive demand in the market. But more dentists aren’t going to pop up because of the lack of students interested in the field.

As people get older, their teeth tend to fall out. This is due to a number of issues such as lack of care or improper hygiene. However, the root also gets weaker for a number of reasons. Medications can cause the root to weaken because of the decrease of the flow of saliva in one’s mouth. Different medications can cause these problems. Speak to your doctor or dentist about any side effects the medications can cause.

Missing teeth can either be replaced individually or a person can opt for dentures. Either way it’s a costly and timely procedure. Baby boomers are going to need these procedures done. If there aren’t enough dentists, an office could become extremely busy to the point where it will take weeks, if not months, to get an appointment.

The baby boomer dentists are creating a double fold problem. However, it’s not their fault. By retiring from their dentistry positions, they are creating less and less offices because there are fewer people in dental school. Even as they get older, they are going to need care as well as causing a demand for dentists.

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Baby Boomers Expect a Retirement Filled With Satisfying Leisure Time Activities

Baby Boomers Are Retiring!

Baby Boomers are moving into retirement in increasing numbers. Already, approximately 1/3 of adults in the U.S. (over age 21), is a Baby Boomer, and every day, 10,000 more people hit their 50th birthdays. But they consider this period of their lives to be “Middle” Age – not “Old” Age. Boomers tend to look 10 years younger than their chronological ages, they’re stronger and healthier than previous generations at the same age, and consequently, they’re going to remain active for many years.

Baby Boomer Characteristics

As a group, Baby Boomers tend to play hard, work hard and spend hard – and this characteristic is likely to continue into retirement (the “Me Generation” is at it again). About 80% expect to work (either full or part-time) past their 65th birthdays; however, when they play – they’re likely to continue to play hard and spend hard, just like always.

Baby Boomer Retirements

So how do they plan to spend all this leisure time?

  • They will continue to be interested in things like luxury travel and vacation packages at preferred hotels and resorts around the world.
  • They are heavily invested, even obsessed, with health and fitness, so things like spas, health clubs, active sports, etc. will also be highly sought after.
  • Their nostalgic tendencies will continue to popularize music and entertainment 50s and 60s style.
  • They’re also committed to being lifelong learners and will actively pursue a variety of educational and learning opportunities, whether serious ones (such as graduate school and advanced degrees, or starting their own businesses) or more informal such as those related to hobbies and other interests.
  • Many members of this generation are grandparents, and heavily invested in their roles as grandparents. Consequently, they’ll spend lots of time with their grandchildren.
  • Many will be retiring “in place,” rather than relocating to the Sunbelt or other traditional retirement venues. Consequently, they’ll spend lots of time and energy redecorating and upgrading their homes – in ways that make life easier and more comfortable on a daily basis.

Baby Boomers Are a Motivated Generation

In general, the Baby Boomer generation is highly motivated to fill their retirement years with interesting and exciting activities that will help keep them young and allow them to express their unique gifts and talents, socialize with family and friends, travel to exciting locales around the world, or even, start their own internet businesses.

They are definitely not going to be relegated to the shuffleboard court or the bingo parlor!

Baby Boomer Retirement – When is it For You?

As the financial situation shifts daily around the world, people are wondering if this is a good time to retire. New fears about the future make it appear that one shouldn’t even consider retirement. Whether there are concerns about money, healthcare, or creating a new life, one thing is for certain this isn’t our parent’s retirement.

If you believe the latest press reports, baby boomers have done a poor job of saving and preparing for retirement. The United States does have one of the poorest saving rates in the world. But, is it realistic to expect people to work forty years and simultaneously save enough to fund another thirty or forty years of retirement.

When the retirement age was established in 1934, the age life expectancy was 65. The thinking at the time was if an individual lived that long, it was appropriate to provide a pension to see them through to end of their days. Social Security was never designed to support a majority of the population for a third of their lives.

The model for retirement needs to change. The idea of working thirty or forty years and then not do anything except get a pension is unrealistic. The new extended longevity of life opens up options that need to be evaluated. Deciding on the right time to retire involves a number of factors, not all of them financial.

Like people in the military, police and firefighters, Mark retired from the entertainment industry at a young age. While some of his financial needs were met with a pension, he started a home based business, which allowed him to raise his son and contribute additional income to the family.

Now his son is graduating from high school and Mark is looking for a new challenge. He would still like to earn money from his new endeavor, but the focus is shifting to work that is contributing to society. He is looking for work that is challenge and rewarding, as well as provides income. A reported 77% of baby boomers expect to continue to work, at least part time, past traditional retirement age.

While some will never retire due to financial reasons, many baby boomers are exploring working part time, making a career change to more fulfilling work, starting a business and altering their lifestyle to accommodate new interests. People who experienced a happy retirement report that money was not the primary factor in their well being. Understanding what you need to be satisfied in life is a key factor to plan for the future.

Column: Data suggest Pensacola baby boomers aren't taking millennials' jobs – UWF Newsroom

Column: Data suggest Pensacola baby boomers aren’t taking millennials’ jobs

University of West Florida | [email protected]

By PHYLLIS K. POOLEY[email protected]

Phyllis Pooley serves as director of special projects with the University of West Florida Center for Research and Economic Opportunity in Pensacola.

With the movement of the baby-boom generation (those born between 1946 and 1964) through the workforce, much has been written regarding the aging of the workforce, the question of whether the baby boomers can afford to retire and even whether the baby boomers wish to retire at all. The natural worry accompanying these discussions is whether by remaining in the workforce the boomers are taking jobs that would otherwise be available to the younger workforce.

At the national level, most economists dismiss this notion. The assertion that it is so comes from the idea that the demand for labor is a fixed amount, and thus if the pattern of younger people entering the workforce is disrupted by someone older staying longer, then someone younger won’t have an opportunity. Economists, however, view the economy differently. They note, for example, that when women entered the workforce, there were not fewer jobs for men; the economy simply expanded.

Labor demand is not considered a fixed pie by economists, but one that expands and contracts. So on the macroeconomic level, where economists roam, there is no evidence that an increase in labor force participation by older workers has any negative impact.

But what do the data for the Pensacola metro area show? The chart below illustrates the percentage of the total workforce in each age group from 1998 through 2014.

Pooley Chart
 

At first blush this chart seems to support those who think that older workers are taking jobs from younger workers. While the percentage of workers from 22 to 64 has remained fairly constant, older workers as a percentage of the workforce has increased at the same time that younger peoples has decreased. That suggests that younger workers are being supplanted by older ones.

But is it really saying that? In order to figure that out, more data and analysis are needed. First one has to take into account the natural demographic changes. While on a national level the baby boomers as the largest population cohort have been replaced by the millennials (born between 1981 and 1997), in Pensacola the population aged between 14 and 21 has decreased as a percentage of the total population from 16.3 percent in 2000 to 13.8 percent in 2015. At the same time those 65 and older saw there percentage increase from 12.5 percent in 2000 to 17.9 percent in 2015. In real terms the 14-21 population in Pensacola fell by 2,000 individuals, while the 65 and older population increased by 18,000 individuals during the 2000 to 2015 time period. That in and of itself could suggest why younger people represent a smaller portion of the Pensacola workforce – there are fewer of them.

Next one has to examine the actual labor force participation rate – i.e. what percentage of people in the age ranges are actually looking for employment? The American Community Survey from the U.S. Census Bureau has produced two sets of estimates for labor force participation by age. Its 2005-09 estimates for the Pensacola area, which includes Escambia and Santa Rosa counties, as compared to its 2010-14 estimates are below.

Pooley Table
Source: America Community Survey. Note that the ACS only provides labor force information starting at age 16.

This table reveals some interesting facts. Those between the ages 16 and 21 have significantly increased their labor force participation from 2009 to 2014, while there has been a decrease over the same time in participation for those 65 and over.

Secondly, during this 5.6 percent increase in labor force participation, the unemployment rate for the 16 to 21 year old age group only increased by slightly over one percent. This fact also suggests that older workers are not having an effect on younger workers employment as the unemployment rate would be much higher as participation increased if younger people were finding no job opportunities.

So what are the causes of youth unemployment in Pensacola? While a full analysis of the topic is considerably well beyond the scope of this article, a possible explanation could involve a lack of necessary skill sets either being acquired in that age group of even being able to be acquired by those in that age group that stop at a high school education. Or there is possibly still a problem with getting this age group to finish their education or sufficient numbers move on to acquiring post-secondary degrees or certificates. While it is clear from the data that other age groups saw their unemployment decrease with the passing of the Great Recession, Pensacola’s youngest members of the workforce are still apparently lacking opportunity.

About the author


University of West Florida
has written 1002 articles for UWF Newsroom

Single Baby Boomers Want a Different Relationship For Dating: This Isn’t Ozzy and Harriet Anymore

I’m just back from presenting two separate computer dating workshops which were 2 hours each. Both of the singles workshops covered different phases of online dating at a Live Singles Conference in Las Vegas. Most of the singles in attendance there were 40 years old and older. Pretty much everyone in attendance were all members of the Baby Boomers generation. The internet dating workshops were very interactive. This turned out to be just great because the participants really got their money’s worth in terms of their investment of time. As a group, the midlife daters over 40 years old and over 50 years old have a lot of questions about dating again in their mature living stage of life. Additionally, Baby Boomers are a generation who is used to an interactive and responsive experience. They desire to receive attention and have their questions addressed and answered.

Baby Boomer Singles After 40 Years Old and Over Fifty Years Old Want Different Things In Their Primary Love Relationship:

Over the course of the weekend conference and the two separate and related online dating workshops, one of the themes which emerged from both sessions as well as was point of conversation then at lunchtime was that Baby Boomers at this stage in life, singles who are over fifty years old for the most part, want a different kind of primary romantic relationship than when they were singles in their twenties or even singles looking to get married in their thirties.

Many of the mature midlife dating singles in their forties and fifties in the Baby Boomer generation of singles have already been married before. These mature singles are likely to either be divorced or widowed.

When that is the case and you are dating after likely already having children and owning a small house, townhouse, or condo, those are important things to discuss in the dates 3-5 and beyond. What do you want? Now that you have already had kids… what do you want now in a relationship?

Not only are these important things and questions to ask your date once you first determine whether or not their is the all-important imperative of In-Person Chemistry (not just the fantasy from Online Email exchanges). These are also important questions to pose to yourself! And Dating is the laboratory for vetting out the truth, testing, and refining.

Until you are well-matched for LIFE partnership… which may or may not at your age result in marriage

Happy Dating and Relationships,

April Braswell

After 50 Dating Expert