ERIC Number: ED264505
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1985-Nov
Reference Count: 0
The Feminization of Poverty for Midlife and Older Women and Its Effects on Their Health.
There are 16.4 million women over age 65 in this country, compared to 11 million men. The 41 percent of this population who live alone are the poorest of the poor in this country, with an annual median income of just over $3,000 for white women and little more than $2,000 for black women. This abject poverty affects the ability of these women to receive good medical care and to maintain lifestyles conducive to good health. Medicaid and Medicare costs, and rapidly inflating health care costs deprive many women of needed health care services. The lack of preventive health care services, the lack of long-term care for chronic illness, and the lack of available health care insurance all contribute to the older woman's health care deprivation. Increasing her poverty is her role as caregiver for her chronically ill or disabled spouse, a role which leaves her little economic stability. Several measures can aid the indigent older woman in acquiring needed health care. These include: (1) encouraging Health Maintenance Organizations projects for health care cost reduction; (2) providing incentives to insurance companies for developing long-term care insurance; (3) reuniting federal health care policies; (4) developing specific training programs for health care professionals on the unique issues of women and aging; and (5) sponsoring research on women's major health problems such as osteoporosis, breast cancer, and hormone therapy. (ABB)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Scientific Meeting of the Gerontological Society (38th, New Orleans, LA, November 22-26, 1985).