February 2nd letter to the editor of the Globe and Mail in response to an article by Jeffrey Simpson, to read the original article, please click here.
Re: Our politicians need expert help in dealing with the costs of aging
When did longevity become such a bad thing? People are living longer, yes, but also healthier lives. The healthcare budget is burgeoning not because we are aging but because everyone is using the healthcare system more and the treatments are much more costly. So say the experts. But the myth persists that aging Boomers will drain the public purse.
Jeffrey Simpson is right to call for expert advice to face the challenge of our changing demographics. But they need to look beyond such blinding presumptions to see the smarter options right in front of us.
Tap into the productivity and expertise of older workers but get rid of mandatory retirement and insurance coverage that ends at age 65. Stop wasting untold billions on outmoded methods of healthcare delivery and get going on primary health teams, electronic health records, better home care and support for family caregivers. Set up a universal pension plan so that people can save adequately for their own retirement.
By all means, call in the experts. But we will need bold political leadership to take their advice! Older Canadians will be forgiven for asking: “Are we there yet?”
Keywords: healthcare, seniors, costs