The number of people ages 65 and older in the United States has steadily increased for the past 60 years, and is currently one of the most significant demographic trends in society. By the year 2030, everyone in the baby boomer generation (those born between 1946 and 1964) will be 65 or older and, for the first time in the history of the United States, seniors are projected to outnumber children. This demographic transition has many benefits for society as well as several challenges. As life expectancy increases, more and more people will be faced with health problems such as chronic illnesses and diseases. In addition, such a large demographic group has diverse needs and identities that must be addressed in elder care. For this discussion forum, please review the resources provided and address the prompts below. There are also many recommended resources listed in the course guide if you would like additional information on any of the topics covered.
Aging and Public Health: Given the size of the aging population, society will have to provide increasingly more care for chronic diseases and disability.
What is a health-related social problem related to aging? Using your sociological imagination, explain why this is a social problem, not just an individual issue.
Why is the rise of STD rates among seniors a social problem according to the sociological criteria?
Several factors have contributed to this rise. Please explain
Why people ages 65 and older are less likely to have been exposed to education campaigns about STDs during their life.
Some of the cultural norms associated with the baby boom generation that may impact this public health issue.
LGBTQ Elder Care: Although social acceptance of LGBTQ people in the United States has improved over the past several decades, LGBTQ individuals continue to face stigma and discrimination. These negative experiences, combined with a lack of access to informed health care and traditional familial supports, result in a variety of health disparities for LGBTQ elder populations. Based on a review of the resources provided, please address the following:
LGBTQ individuals face unique challenges as they age. Describe some of these unique challenges.
What role does homophobia and discrimination play in the long-term care of LGBTQ elders? What effect does this have on their lives?
Propose and describe a social action, community program, or public policy that could ensure that the needs of LGBTQ elders are met by health care providers and elder care homes.