What’s in store for older Americans from the 2020 presidential election? For answers, the American Society on Aging (ASA) just hosted its Panel of Pundits
—an annual event that’s been running for almost 20 years. The five panelists brought a range of political perspectives and decades of experience in the
aging and political worlds. You can find the full article and a link to the replay at Next Avenue.
Most of the pundits felt that Social Security was not on the table as a 2020 election issue. However, most felt its solvency would be a serious issue in 2021
caused by increased unemployment lowering contributions to Social Security as well as the rising deficit.
All panelists hailed the increased use of telehealth for Medicare beneficiaries during the pandemic, thanks to temporary COVID-19 rules, and hoped that many of
the new policies enabling its greater use would remain permanent after the pandemic. However, some panelists voiced concerns about access to telehealth caused by
the “digital divide” that some older adults are facing.
One of the more interesting questions during the webinar was posed by an audience member who asked what the panelists thought the top aging-related policy change
should be, whoever’s elected president. The responses:
- White and Zogby called for expanded intergenerational mentoring programs.
- Browdie wanted to see the age for Medicare eligibility lowered from 65 to 60, which Biden has proposed.
- Kaldes hoped for greater enforcement of age discrimination employment laws.
- Newton-Small favored increased reimbursement for home health care under Medicare.