Older Americans Month Kicks Off

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President Barack Obama kicked off Older Americans Month last week to promote this years theme of “Age Strong, Live Long.” The month long celebration recognizes the efforts of all ages to promote the well-being, community involvement, and independence of senior citizens said a statement from the White House.

“My Administration is committed to ensuring older Americans can age strong and live long,” said Obama.

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“By strengthening Medicare and Medicaid, while protecting Social Security, we help ensure all Americans can age with dignity. The recently enacted Affordable Care Act strengthens Medicare by providing free preventive care starting next year, enhancing care coordination, and gradually closing the “donut hole” gap in prescription drug coverage.”

In addition, this law includes provisions to help prevent and eliminate elder abuse, neglect, and exploitation said Obama.

“We must also protect seniors by expanding efforts to fight fraud, waste, and abuse in Medicare and Medicaid through national and State efforts, as well as community-based programs that empower retirees to detect and defend against health care fraud.”

According to data from the US Census, there were 38.9 million people 65 and older in the US on July 1, 2008. By 2050, the government estimates that 88.5 million people 65 and older will live in the country and will comprise 20 percent of the total population at that time.

Older Americans Month

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  • It is not surprising that this President did not even mention the HECM program. Although the Stimulus Package helped the program by increasing the lending limit on HECMs, there is not one other thing this Administration has done FOR the HECM program. It is clear that the Administration through its OMB has been silently but mischievously attacking the program over the last 12 months.

  • I believe the administration must know that HECMs, or RM's in general, are an important piece of the puzzle when it comes to financing the retirement of America's population. Unfortunately there has been some grandstanding in Congress from some uninformed individuals that appear more interested in garnering attention to themselves rather than best serving the public. The recent changes to the program are an effort to manage risks based on assumptions. Going forward, changes must be carefully weighed against the risk of causing the program to become ineffective, and therefore forcing more pressure onto Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security.

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