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Living on a Budget
AARP New Jersey, May 5, 2010
AARP has publicly thanked NJ Congressman John Adler for his leadership in recognizing and addressing the economic concerns of our nation’s older adults by sponsoring legislation that seeks to provide one-time economic relief to older Americans struggling to make ends meet.
For the first time since 1975, the Social Security administration announced that seniors will NOT receive an automatic cost of living adjustment or COLA for 2010. Although this was triggered by low overall inflation, the costs of the things seniors depend on most – prescription drugs and health care – have continued to increase ABOVE inflation. Seniors spend an average of 30 percent of their income on health care costs – six times greater than what shoe with employer-sponsored health coverage spend. And, their prescription drug costs, premiums and co-pays have skyrocketed.
The economic downturn has hit seniors especially hard. Many have lost a significant portion of their retirement savings, but unlike younger Americans, retirees have less time to make up substantial stock market and 401K account losses. Because of the current economic crisis, many seniors are becoming more dependent on Social Security.
AARP is calling on Congress to provide seniors with the $250 one-time economic relief to help offset this situation. Congressman Adler is to be commended for his leadership and efforts to see this through.
1. On average, seniors spend $4,400 out of pocket for health care per year.
2. Seniors enrolled in Medicare Part D prescription drug plans have seen their premiums increase by 50 percent between 2006 and 2010, including an 11 percent increase between 2009 and 2010.
3. Household net worth is down 17 percent since the end of 2007.
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