REPORT: “Americans Are Retiring Later, Dying Sooner and Sicker In-Between”

That’s a rather depressing headline, yeah? I’m sharing it with readers as an extension of my own curiosity with the impact modern society has on our collective health and well being.  According to this just-published report, it seems we are not living quite as long and are not nearly as healthy as generations that have come before us.

————–

Read on via Bloomberg:

U.S. life expectancy is declining, new calculations show.

The U.S. retirement age is rising, as the government pushes it higher and workers stay in careers longer.

But lifespans aren’t necessarily extending to offer equal time on the beach. Data released last week suggest Americans’ health is declining and millions of middle-age workers face the prospect of shorter, and less active, retirements than their parents enjoyed.

Here are the stats: The U.S. age-adjusted mortality rate—a measure of the number of deaths per year—rose 1.2 percent from 2014 to 2015, according to the Society of Actuaries. That’s the first year-over-year increase since 2005, and only the second rise greater than 1 percent since 1980.

At the same time that Americans’ life expectancy is stalling, public policy and career tracks mean millions of U.S. workers are waiting longer to call it quits. The age at which people can claim their full Social Security benefits is gradually moving up, from 65 for those retiring in 2002 to 67 in 2027. (story continues below)

——————-

Nominate the latest novel by D.W. Ulsterman HERE

for a chance to win a FREE copy!

Image may contain: text

Nominate the latest novel by D.W. Ulsterman HERE 

for a chance to win a FREE copy!

——————–

Almost one in three Americans age 65 to 69 is still working, along with almost one in five in their early 70s.

Postponing retirement can make financial sense, because extended careers can make it possible to afford retirements that last past age 90 or even 100. But a study out this month adds some caution to that calculation.

Americans in their late 50s already have more serious health problems than people at the same ages did 10 to 15 years ago, according to the journal Health Affairs.

 

Researchers have offered many theories for why Americans’ health is getting worse. Princeton University economists Anne Case and Angus Deaton, a Nobel Prize winner, have argued that an epidemic of suicide, drug overdoses and alcohol abuse have caused a spike in death rates among middle-age whites.

Higher rates of obesity may also be taking their toll. And Americans may have already seen most of the benefits from previous positive developments that cut the death rate, such as a decline in smoking and medical advances like statins that fight cardiovascular disease.

Declining health and life expectancy are good news for one constituency: Pension plans, which must send a monthly check to retirees for as long as they live.

———————–

So the Middle-Aged Americans of today are less healthy and active than those from fifteen years ago. That nugget of information was then followed up by the last line above indicating pension plans might breathe a sigh of relief to see more people dying earlier so those plans don’t collapse and chaos ensue.

Now THAT’s the stuff of a good story! Imagine a government-controlled healthcare system getting millions hooked on highly addictive opioids in order to ensure more and more die of overdoses sooner so that fewer and fewer will get back the pensions/Social Security they paid into for years and years.

Crazy speculative fiction, I know.

Or is it?

The opioid death rate has been increasing by double-digits for the last few years. Something sinister is going on.

OK, that’s enough depressing news for today.

Upward and onward…

-DWU

———————–

Nominate the latest novel by D.W. Ulsterman HERE

for a chance to win a FREE copy!

Image may contain: text

Nominate the latest novel by D.W. Ulsterman HERE 

for a chance to win a FREE copy!

——————-

ulsterman