Current Awareness in Aging Research (CAAR) Report #280--March 24, 2005


CAAR (Current Awareness in Aging Research) is a weekly email report produced by the Center for Demography of Health and Aging at the University of Wisconsin-Madison that helps researchers keep up to date with the latest developments in the field. For more information, including an archive of back issues and subscription information see:


I. Data:


A. "Researcher Contribution: Imputed Data for Pension Wealth Computations," (Health and Retirement Study, March 17, 2005).

B. "Researcher Contribution: Pension Data Tracker File," (Health and Retirement Study, March 17, 2005).


II. Reports and articles:

2. SSA TRUSTEES REPORT: "2005 Annual Report of the Board of Trustees of the Federal Old-Age and Survivors Insurance and Disability Insurance Trust Funds," (Social Security Administration, March 2005, .pdf and HTML format, 217p.).



A. "2005 Annual Report of the Boards of Trustees of the Hospital Insurance and Supplementary Medical Insurance Trust Funds," (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, March 2005, .pdf format, 209p.).

Scroll down to "2005 Report".

B. "Decision Memo for Carotid Artery Stenting (CAG-00085R)," (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, March 17, 2005).

Press release:

C. "Decision Memo for Smoking & Tobacco Use Cessation Counseling (CAG-00241N)," (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, March 22, 2005).

Press release:

D. "CMS Launches Breakthrough Initiative for Major Improvement in Care for Kidney Patients," (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, March 17, 2005).

E. "CMS Hires Medicare Ombudsman Dan Schreiner to be 'Voice' for Medicare Beneficiaries," (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, March 22, 2005).

F. "Medicare Publishes Proposed Rule Updating Hospital Conditions of Participations," (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, March 24, 2005).

4. CENSUS BUREAU FACTS FOR FEATURE: "Older Americans Month Celebrated in May," (CB05-FF.07, March 24, 2005, .pdf and HTML format, 3p.).

5. MEPS STATISTICAL BRIEF: "Characteristics of Persons with High Medical Expenditures in the U.S. Civilian Noninstitutionalized Population, 2002," by Leslie J. Conwell and Joel W. Cohen (Medical Expenditure Panel Study Statistical Brief No. 73, March 2005, .pdf format, 6p.).


A. "Early Release of Selected Estimates Based on Data From the January-September 2004 National Health Interview Survey," (National Center for Health Statistics, March 2005, .pdf format, 96p.).

B. "National Hospital Discharge Survey: 2002 Annual Summary With Detailed Diagnosis and Procedure Data," (National Center for Health Statistics, Vital and Health Statistics, Series 13, No. 158, March 2005, .pdf format, 199p.).

7. DHHS OIG INSPECTION REPORT: "Emerging Practices in Nursing Homes," (US Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Inspector General, OEI-01-04-00070, March 2005, .pdf format, 10p.).


This report is based on initiatives used by some in the nursing home community. OIG did not independently evaluate the initiatives, but it did look for and observe emerging practices related to improving staffing, improving quality of care, and enhancing residents' quality of life. The report focuses on emerging practices that address specific problems identified by nursing homes, tie into their ongoing operations, have been in place for sufficient time for the homes to consider them successful, and seem likely to continue at the home. The emerging practices include mentoring programs, using data for decision making on resident care, and maintaining a home-like environment, among others.

8. NIH PRESS RELEASE: "NIH State-of-the-Science Panel Calls for "Demedicalization" of Menopause," (National Institutes of Health, March 23, 2005).


A. "The Impact of the Erosion of Retiree Health Benefits on Workers and Retirees," by Paul Fronstin (Employee Benefit Research Institute Brief No. 279, March 2005, .pdf format, 20p.).

B. "Social Security Reform: How Benefits Compare," (Employee Benefit Research Institute, March 2005, .pdf format, 33p.).

10. CENTER FOR RETIREMENT RESEARCH AT BOSTON COLLEGE ISSUE BRIEF: "Is Private Long-Term Care Insurance the Answer?" by Richard W. Johnson and Cori E. Uccello (IB 29, March 2005, .pdf format, 9p.).


A. "Medicaid and Long-Term Services and Supports For Older People," by Enid Kassner (AARP Public Policy Institute, February 2005, .pdf format, 2p.).

Scroll down to "Download or view" link.

B. "Positive Employment Policies and Practices Needed to Woo and Retain an Older Workforce," by Deborah Russell (AARP, March 2005).


A. "Ageing Populations: High Time for Action--background paper prepared by the OECD for the meeting of G8 Employment and Labour Ministers, London 10-11-March, 2005," (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, March 2005, .pdf format, 12p.).

B. "Ageing and employment policies--France," (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, March 2005, .pdf format).

Executive summary (English):

Full report (available in French only, in non-printable .pdf format):

13. AUSTRALIAN INSTITUTE OF HEALTH AND WELFARE REPORT: "2004 Adult Vaccination Survey: Summary Results," (AIHW Cat. No. PHE-56, March 2005, .pdf format, 49p.).


A. "Structural characterization of copper(II) binding to {alpha}-synuclein: Insights into the bioinorganic chemistry of Parkinson's disease," by Rodolfo M. Rasia, Carlos W. Bertoncini, Derek Marsh, Wolfgang Hoyer, Dmitry Cherny, Markus Zweckstetter, Christian Griesinger, Thomas M. Jovin, and Claudio O. Fernández (_Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences_, Vol. 102, No. 12, March 22, 2005, .pdf and HTML format, p. 4494-4499).

B. "JNK regulates lifespan in Caenorhabditis elegans by modulating nuclear translocation of forkhead transcription factor/DAF-16," by Seung Wook Oh, Arnab Mukhopadhyay, Nenad Svrzikapa, Feng Jiang, Roger J. Davis, and Heidi A. Tissenbaum (_Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences_, Vol. 102, No. 12, March 22, 2005, .pdf and HTML format, p. 4494-4499).

15. ILCUSA REPORT: "ILC Policy Report," (International Longevity Center, USA, March 2005, .pdf format, 6p.). The ILC Policy Report is "a monthly compilation of longevity news and trends in the U.S. and abroad."


III. Working Papers:

16. POPULATION COUNCIL: "Reciprocal effects of health and economic well-being among older adults in Taiwan and Beijing," by Kristine R. Baker, Mary Beth Ofstedal, Zachary Zimmer, Zhe Tang, and Yi-Li Chuang (Working Paper 187, March 2005, .pdf format, p.).


The objectives of this study are threefold: (1) to examine whether socioeconomic status disparities in health are found in non-Western settings; (2) to assess whether socioeconomic status gradients in health endure into older ages; and (3) to evaluate the direction of causality between health and socioeconomic status. Using data from multiple waves of two longitudinal panel studies of older adults: the Survey of Health and Living Status of the Elderly in Taiwan (1993, 1996, 1999) and the Beijing Multidimensional Longitudinal Study of Aging (1992, 1994, 1997), the paper employs structural equation models to test hypotheses concerning cross-lagged and reciprocal influences between economic well-being and health. Findings provide evidence for reciprocal effects of economic well-being and health among older adults in both Taiwan and Beijing. Those with higher levels of economic well-being have lower levels of functional limitation over time, and those with higher levels of functional limitation have lower levels of economic well-being over time. Consistent with studies based in the United States and Europe, findings from Asia indicate economic differentials in functional health among older adults, highlighting the wider applicability of these associations across settings with very different systems of health care and stratification. Results underscore the importance of considering reciprocal influences in studies of socioeconomic status and health.


A. "The cost of population aging: forecasting future hospital expenses in Germany," by Hilke Brockmann and Jutta Gampe (MPIDR Working Paper 2005-007, March 2005, .pdf format, 44p.).


Forecasts are always wrong. Still, they paint potential future scenarios and provide a platform for policy decisions today. This is what gives forecast such a high salience in political debates about the effects of population aging. The paper aims at gauging the effect of population aging on hospital expenses in Germany. We use a probabilistic forecast model comprising a stochastic demographic component that exploits historical mortality trends, a stochastic cost component based on typical hospital costs over the life-course, and a quality measure of medical progress, which builds on past advances in hospital treatment. Three different scenarios are constructing, yielding 3 important results. Firstly, there is an increase in overall hospital expenditure until the German baby boomers will die out (2040 to 2050). Secondly, the increase is comparably moderate because the average individual costs are likely to decline as elderly health improves and since medical progress has an ambiguous influence on hospital expenditures. Finally, the cost increase varies significantly by gender and disease.

B. "Month of birth influences survival up to age 105+: first results from the age validation study of German semi-supercentenarians," by Gabriele Doblhammer, Rembrandt Scholz, and Heiner Maier (MPIDR Working Paper 2005-004, March 2005, .pdf format, 14p.).


Using data from Germany, we examine if month of birth influences survival up to age 105. Since age reporting at the highest ages is notoriously unreliable we draw on age-validated information from a huge age validation project of 1487 alleged German semi-supercentenarians aged 105+. We use month of birth as an exogenous indicator for seasonal changes in the environment around the time of birth. We find that the seasonal distribution of birth dates changes with age. For 925 age-validated semi-supercentenarians the seasonality is more pronounced than at the time of their births (1880-1900). Among the December-born the relative risk of survival from birth to age 105+ is 16 per cent higher than the average, among the June-born, 23 per cent lower. The month-of-birth pattern in the survival risks of the German semi-supercentenarians resembles closely the month-of-birth pattern in remaining life expectancy at age 50 in Denmark.

18. IZA:

A. "Moral Hazard and Cash Benefits in Long-Term Home Care," by Bernard van den Berg and Wolter Hassink (Institute for the Study of Labor (University of Bonn, Germany] Discussion Paper 1532, March 2005, .pdf format, 20p.).


This paper tests empirically for ex-post moral hazard in a system based on demand-side subsidies. In the Netherlands, demand-side subsidies were introduced in 1996. Clients receive a cash benefit to purchase the type of home care (housework, personal care, support with mobility, organisational tasks or social support) they need from the care supplier of their choice (private care provider, regular care agency, commercial care agency or paid informal care provider). Furthermore, they negotiate with the care supplier about price and quantity. Our main findings are the following. 1) The component of the cash benefit a client has no residual claimant on, has a positive impact on the price of care. 2) In contrast, the components of the cash benefit a client has residual claimant on, have no or a negative impact on the price of care. Both results point at the existence of ex-post moral hazard in a system of demand-side subsidies.

B. "Pension Incomes in the European Union: Policy Reform Strategies in Comparative Perspective," by Daniela Mantovani, Fotis Papadopoulos, Holly Sutherland, and Panos Tsakloglou (Institute for the Study of Labor (University of Bonn, Germany] Discussion Paper 1537, March 2005, .pdf format, 36p.).


This paper considers the effects on current pensioner incomes of reforms designed to improve the long-term sustainability of public pension systems in the European Union. We use EUROMOD to simulate a set of common illustrative reforms for four countries selected on the basis of their diverse pension systems and patterns of poverty among the elderly: Denmark, Germany, Italy and the UK. The variations in fiscal and distributive effects on the one hand suggest that different paths for reform are necessary in order to achieve common objectives across countries, and on the other provide indications of the appropriate directions for reform in each case.

19. Fundación de Estudios de Economía Aplicada [FEDEA]: "The Evolution of Retirement," by J. Ignacio Conde-Ruiz, Vincenzo Galasso, and Paola Profeta (Documento de Trabajo 2005-03, February 2005, .pdf format, 35p.).


We provide a long term perspective on the individual retirement behavior and on the future of early retirement. In a cross-country sample, we find that total pension spending depends positively on the degree of early retirement and on the share of elderly in the population, which increase the proportion of retirees, but has hardly any effect on the per-capita pension benefits. We show that in a Markovian political economic theoretical framework, in which incentives to retire early are embedded, a political equilibrium is characterized by an increasing sequence of social security contribution rates converging to a steady state and early retirement. Comparative statics suggest that aging and productivity slow-downs lead to higher taxes and more early retirement. However, when income effects are factored in, the model suggests that periods of stagnation - characterized by decreasing labor income - may lead middle aged individuals to postpone retirement.


IV. Journal Tables of Contents (check your library for availability):

20. Experimental Aging Research (Vol. 31, No. 2, March 2005). Note: Full electronic text of this journal is available in the EBSCO Host Academic Search Elite Database. Check your library for the availability of this database and this issue.

21. Medical Care (Vol. 43, No.4 , April 2005).

Click on "April 2005" for tables of contents.

22. INGENTA Tables of Contents: INGENTA provides fee based document delivery services for selected journals.

A. Point your browser to:

B. click on "advanced search"
C. Type in your publication name and click "Exact title" radio button
D. Under "Show", click the "fax/ariel" radio button.
E. View the table of contents for the issue noted.

International Journal of Aging and Human Development (Vol. 60, No. 2, 2005).

Journal of Gerontological Social Work (Vol. 43, No. 4, 2004).


23. AMEDEO MEDICAL LITERATURE: Note: "AMEDEO has been created to serve the needs of healthcare professionals, including physicians, nurses, pharmacists, administrators, other members of the health professions, and patients and their friends. They can easily access timely, relevant information within their respective fields... All AMEDEO services are free of charge. This policy was made possible thanks to generous unrestricted educational grants provided by AMGEN, Berlex, Eisai, Glaxo Wellcome, Novartis, Pfizer, Roche, and Schering AG."

A. Osteoporosis: Literature for the week of March 23, 2005:

B. Alzheimer's Disease: Literature for the week of March 23, 2005:

C. Parkinson's Disease: Literature for the week of March 23, 2005:

D. Prostate Cancer: Literature for the week of March 23, 2005:

E. Stem Cell Research: Literature for the week of March 23, 2005:

F. Ophthalmology: Literature for the week of March 23, 2005:

AMADEO Literature Guide:


V. Funding Opportunities:

24. NIH:

A. "International Research Collaboration - Basic Biomedical (FIRCA-BB)," (US National Institutes of Health, National Institute on Aging in conjunction with other agencies, PAR-05-072, March 18, 2005).

B. "Career Development Award to Promote Diversity in Neuroscience Research," (US National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, PAR-05-071, March 18, 2005).

C. "Developmental Research on Elder Mistreatment," (US National Institutes of Health, National Institute on Aging (NIA) and Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research (OBSSR) RFA-AG-05-009, Mar. 23, 2005). For more information see:

25. DHHS AOA: "Alzheimer's Disease Demonstration Grants to States (ADDGS) Program," (US Department of Health and Human Services, Administration on Aging, HHS-2005-AoA-Initial-AZ, March 2005).


VI. Conferences:

26. UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS MEDICAL BRANCH: {S}ymposium entitled "Surgery in the Elderly Patient - Galveston II," to be held from 8:30 am-3:00 pm on Monday, April 18, 2005, at the Shriners Burns Hospital Auditorium, 7th Floor, Shriners Burns Hospital, Galveston, Texas. For more information:




Charlie Fiss
Information Manager
Center for Demography and Ecology and
Center for Demography of Health and Aging
Rm. 4470A Social Science Bldg
1180 Observatory Drive
Madison, WI 53706-1393
Phone: (608) 265-9240
Fax: (608) 262-8400