Monday, July 4, 2011

Tired of being blamed for health care costs?

Which generation are you? Heaven help you if you are a Boomer. Many of us are active volunteers.

Myself and Mary - Hospice Muskoka volunteers
The Characteristics of Boomer Volunteers
   • Clear leaders -- in terms of average hours of volunteering compared to other groups
   • Impressive overall participation rates – consistently among the highest
   • Meaningful engagement – boomers look for purpose in their volunteer activities
   • Available time and flexibility – boomers have more time and relatively flexible schedules compared to other groups
   • Expectation of organization – boomers want organizations to be efficient and effective in their management of volunteers and staff

   • Loyalty – Boomers indicated they are willing to stay at an organization for many years as long as they are treated well

You've heard of the 'Silver Tsunami', the aging of the baby boom generation, but many of us are living longer, healthier lives. The myths, and the negative language, and the general attitudes to those of us who have helped shape this country.

 Chris Carruthers MD 

A 'blocked bed'? We don't call ALCs that pejorative term, bed blockers. Alternative level of care (ALC) patients need to be somewhere, until a suitable placement is found. I am shocked at attitudes.

The women who did not have maternity leave when caring for children.
The citizens who have contributed to Canada, and our healthcare system.

In fact, numerous studies indicate that the aging of the population is too gradual to rank as a major cost driver in health care, and that it’s more of a glacier than a tsunami. 

Debunking the 'Grey Tsunami' Meme

Description imageby Alan CasselsDrug-policy researcher, University of Victoria; expert adviser,
While the aging population is contributing to increases in health-care spending, increased utilization (more drugs, doctor visits, surgeries, and diagnostic/screening tests) is contributing about four times as much. Maybe the grey tsunami should be rewritten as the “tsunami of over-medicalization.” A British Columbia study found that, over the past 30 years, population growth accounted for seven per cent of growth in health-care spending, while aging accounted for 14 per cent, inflation 19 per cent, and increased utilization 59 per cent.

And another: They cite a study, finally!

Canada's elderly not likely to swamp health system

Date: Monday Aug. 29, 2011 4:27 PM ET
VANCOUVER — Fears that Canada's aging population could lead to soaring health-care costs may be greatly exaggerated, say researchers, who suggest that the predicted "grey tsunami" may turn out to be more like a "grey glacier."
Two studies by health economists at the University of British Columbia say other factors are driving up health-care costs -- primarily the growing use of specialists, increasing diagnostic tests for the elderly and higher consumption of ever more costly drugs.

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