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Social Security, Medicare Extend Seniors’ Lives – Study

September 17, 2012

A recent study revealed that Medicare and Social Security add years to the lives of many senior citizens, intensifying the claims that are said amidst the campaigns for the upcoming November elections.

The said finding was from a study conducted by Courtney C. Coile, Phillip B. Levine, and Robin McKnight, researchers from the Wellesley College.

Initially, the purpose of the Wellesley College’s study was to look at the impact of the recent recession to the health of the people and their longevity. However, earlier research constantly arrived at the surprising conclusion that longevity among senior citizens improved during that same time period.

Although this is so, any longevity dividend from the recession is short-lived, the study also said. It added that the effects of losing a job help contribute to the diminishing health of the people, which includes shorter life spans.

The results of the research paper indicated that “any short-term positive health benefits associated with a recession are temporary and, ultimately, are more than offset by subsequent health deterioration.” This applies “for workers in their late fifties and through age 61.”

It went on to say that a 58-year-old worker who lost a job because of a recession “could be expected to live three fewer years (19 years instead of 22) as a result.”

Further, the research concluded that workers age 62 or older who are unemployed may “have no long-term negative health effects.” The finding is said to “play an important role” in the availability of Social Security and Medicare for workers age 62 and 65, respectively.

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