Chronic Conditions, High Health Care Costs Trouble Aging Boomers

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<p>A new Commonwealth Fund analysis of national survey data finds that U.S. baby boomers are facing a host of problems related to health and health coverage as they age.<bR><br>Speaking today at the annual meeting of the <a href="">National Academy of Social Insurance,</a> Fund senior program officer Sara R. Collins, Ph.D., lead author of the analysis, <a href="/cnlib/pub/enews_clickthrough.htm?enews_item_id=20377&return_url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww%2Ecmwf%2Eorg%2Fpublications%2Fpublications%5Fshow%2Ehtm%3Fdoc%5Fid%3D340370%26%23doc340370">Health Coverage for Aging Baby Boomers: Findings from The Commonwealth Fund Survey of Older Adults,</a> reported that over 60 percent of adults ages 50 to 64 who are working or have a working spouse have been diagnosed with at least one chronic health condition, such as arthritis, cancer, diabetes, heart disease, high cholesterol, or hypertension.<bR><br>At the same time, baby boomers are also coping with barriers to needed care resulting from unstable health insurance coverage and problems with medical bills and medical debt. One-fifth of older workers and their spouses are uninsured or had a time when they were uninsured since turning 50.<br><br>These difficulties, the report finds, translate into concerns for the future. Two-thirds of older adults in working families reported they are very or somewhat worried that they might not be able to afford needed medical care in the future. When asked about their interest in potential solutions, 71 percent of survey respondents said they would be interested in special Medicare health accounts to cover expenses not covered by Medicare, while 72 percent expressed interest in enrolling in Medicare before age 65.</p>