AARP Eye Center
Isaac Newton’s first law of motion tells us that a body at rest will remain at rest unless acted on by an outside force. We believe that our first-of-its-kind AARP Innovation Fund will provide the outside force needed to spur private-sector investment in innovative products and services focused on improving the lives of people ages 50 and older as well as those of their families.
We all know the world is aging. Think about this: of everyone who ever lived to age 65 since the dawn of humans, two-thirds are walking the earth today! By 2050, 17 out of every 100 people on earth will be ages 65 and over. By 2030, the number of Americans 65 and older will have nearly doubled to some 78 million — that’s 1 in every 5 of us. One in 3 Americans will have celebrated their 50th birthday.
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What too many have yet to realize, however, is that the way people are aging is also changing dramatically here in the United States and throughout the developed world, thus creating among those who are ages 50 and older vast new needs and interests — along with vast new opportunities for private enterprise.
Better nutrition, medical care and lifestyle choices are offering us an opportunity for an additional 25, 30 or more years of being independent, active and creative. It really is no exaggeration to say that a whole new stage is being added to our lives between middle age and what we used to think of as “old age.” But we will need more solutions and options to help get us there, and today we’re not seeing enough private-sector investments and innovations that are focused on our 50-plus population.
We decided that the interests of our members would not allow us to sit back and wait. AARP needed to do all we could to become an effective outside force to encourage needed investment.
The AARP Innovation Fund will provide capital to innovative companies. We have partnered with JP Morgan Asset Management in this initiative and have committed $40 million to the fund. We are focusing the fund on three health care-related areas.
Health care is an area where the needs of our 50-plus population and the opportunities for investment converge. Our 50-plus citizens are searching for new and better tools and technology to help them stay healthy, independent and productive as they age. Many of the innovations necessary to meet the needs of our 50-plus population are only in the early stages of development — or do not yet exist.