Arizona’s Senior Health Care Crisis is making affordable, quality care difficult to access. The crisis is the result of five factors:
- The senior population continues to swell,
- Most seniors struggle with limited incomes,
- For most senior’s, health just naturally deteriorates,
- There is massive confusion over Medicare and Medicaid benefits,
- Senior health care providers are struggling to get paid.
And now, the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic is fanning the flames.
Exploding Senior Population
Pew Research reports that the Baby Boomer generation peaked at 78.8 million during 1999 and, according to AARP, “. . . 10,000 baby boomers are turning 65 every single day, a trend that is expected to continue into the 2030s.”
The majority of America’s seniors are poor as documented by an April, 2017 Kaiser Family Foundation report titled Income and Assets of Medicare Beneficiaries, 2016-2035. The report indicates that, during 2016, half of all Medicare beneficiaries had an annual income of less than $26,200 and one-quarter had annual incomes below $15,250 and savings of less than $14,550.
As seniors age, their need for affordable healthcare increases:
- The National Council on Aging reports that approximately 80% of older adults have at least one chronic disease and 68% have at least two.
- The American Diabetes Association reports that diabetes affects 14.3 million Americans aged 65+, or 26.8% of the older population.
- The Journals of Gerontology reports that the high prevalence of hypertension in older persons (nearly one of two subjects aged 60 years and older) plays an important role in the development of cerebrovascular disease, congestive heart failure, and coronary heart disease.
CMS.gov, the Federal Medicare website, reports that there is a strong relationship between poverty and the health of older adults. “Among Medicare beneficiaries with incomes below the federal poverty level (around $12,000 per year for a single person), 38.7% spend over one-fifth of their annual income on premiums and out-of-pocket medical expenses.”
The RAND Corporation study Assessing the Care of Vulnerable Elders, conducted in collaboration with Pfizer, Inc., made a comprehensive assessment of healthcare quality provided to the vulnerable elderly. The key finding was that vulnerable elderly receive (only) about half of the care that is recommended for them.
Are You A Victim Of Arizona’s
Senior Health Care Crisis?
If your health care is at risk because of the health care crisis, contact ACCESSMed. We are a nonprofit community service that can help you access quality, affordable health care by enrolling in your full range of Medicare, Medicaid and Medicare Advantage benefits. And, there is never a fee for our services.