What you need to know about – helping senior citizens

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Introduction The baby boomers is the population which haven taken birth after second world war till 1965 when there was a tremendous increase in birth rate due to the social and economic development in the USA. Now this population is going into the old age and thus bringing a burden to the nation as the country has to take care of not only the food and shelter but also the medical care. Rather medical care is in a way more important as they are prone to many diseases not only infectious because of their lowered immunity but also non –communicable ones such as Diabetes Mellitus, Myocardial Infarction, Stroke, etc. not to speak of those other mental disorders such as Depression, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, etc.

Current problem
There is more than 35million population in USA that is more than 65 years as per the latest Census Bureau report. This is nearly 12 % of the whole population and this is supposed to more than double in the next 50 years or so requiring the nation provide for their well-being. At present, it is said, that the disabled and elderly account for only around 20% of Medicaid spending but they account for more than 75% of the Medicaid spending on the prescription medicines. There is yet another set of problems. There is a progressive decline in the renal function of the elderly. The enzymes needed to metabolize the drug are less and have they have sensitivity towards certain drugs. They also have lesser free fluid volume. These and many other factors make the elderly especially susceptible for drug toxicity. Also adverse drug reactions are much more common in the aged population than others.

Buying cheap drugs
There are certain federal and other non-governmental plans available that help the senior citizens to buy the drugs cheaper. These are:
1.Medicaid
When president Lyndon Johnson signed the Medicare and Medicaid act in 1965 it marked a new era for the health care in USA. For a minimum amount, which is called a co-payment or some deductions, one can avail this facility. Nearly all states provide this facility to their population. You just have to fulfill certain their requirements.

2.Drug store discounts
Certain seniors are allowed a discount on their prescriptions, which can help them majorly.

3.Medicare drug discount cards
This is available for that elderly population who are not entitled for benefit under the Medicaid program.

4.Medicare prescription assistance programs
This type of program is available in nearly all states although they may differ in the eligibility requirements.

5.Online buying
People may buy the drugs online through the Internet but the only drawback is that they have to rely on the seller and in that process they may get duped by getting second grade items or by their money.

6.Buying from Canada
Some people prefer to buy their medicines from Canada, which has health policy a bit different from that of USA and hence provides a market for cheaper drugs. FDA does take it seriously if one buys them in small amounts.

7.Charities
There are certain charitable institutions, which help the elderly and the destitute in having their medicines, which at times they, give free of cost.

8.Others like state prescription fund, LCD, prescription drug credit program, subsidies, PAAD, PACENET,

Options available besides drugs
Besides the above options available for getting cheaper drugs there are other options like living in an extended health care facility or long term care facility or assisted living where people can not only live a normal healthy life but also get treatment if the need arise.

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Author: Piyawut Sutthiruk

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