Changing Aging Blog

Senior Care Becoming a Business Issue
Date: Aug 1st, 2007 10:38am


Eric Schubert

Thanks to Ecumen’s Rose Lenzner for bringing these stats to the Changing Aging blog:Politically, long-term care has mostly been an issue whose advocates have largely come from inside the profession, rather than diverse coalitions. Here are some interesting stats that indicate aging is increasingly becoming a business issue - and not just due to pending workforce shortages caused by retiring baby boomers:According to the MetLife Caregiving Cost Study done last summer: - The cost to U.S. employers with employees who care for a senior parent is $33.6 billion.- 40% of employed caregivers take on average 17 days of unpaid leave per year to care for an aging family member.- Only about 26% of U.S. companies provide any type of senior care benefit.You can feel this issue percolating and getting ready to pop …Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty recently took over the chairpersonship of the National Governor’s Association. Can’t fault him with making his focus issue energy; it’s a popular issue that impacts everyone. However, another great issue opportunity for him in his own state is aging … As a baby boomer, he’s set up perfectly to be a champion for 'changing aging.' Don’t know if he’ll be the person, but someone in public policy will see how many different constituencies this issue impacts and will step out and lead. The Ecumen Age Wave Study illustrates a number of opportunities (and low-hanging fruit) for policymakers that want to grab them.

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