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Just How Healthy Are Elderly Baby Boomers?

The baby boomer generation may be living longer than previous generations but a real concern has arisen over health issues the generation may face.

As the last of the baby boomer generation becomes eligible for Medicare in 2030, the average life expectancy is expected to be an additional 20.1 years but health issues may present major challenges.

A recent study suggests that those elderly people who will live longer will do so in poorer overall health than the elderly people from previous generations. It appears, in part, this is because medical science has done such a great job of finding treatments for diseases that often kill people early, such as cardiovascular problems. As people will be living longer, however, they will get other diseases, such as cancer and Alzheimer's, in greater numbers.

The Bangor Daily News reported this story in "Baby Boomers are more likely to spend their last years in worse health than past generations."

This has important implications.

While an individual cannot know for certain whether he or she will be one of the people who live longer and suffer from disease, individuals can play it safe and plan ahead.

Baby boomers should consider getting estate plans that include powers of attorney and advanced health care directives so if they become sick or incapacitated, the people handling their affairs will have been chosen by them.

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