Current Awareness in Aging Research (CAAR) Report #306--September 29, 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:

1. ICPSR: The University of Michigan Institute for Social Research Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research has recently released the following datasets, which may be of interest to researchers in aging. Note: Some ICPSR studies are available only to ICPSR member institutions. To find out whether your organization is a member, and whether or not it supports ICPSR Direct downloading, see:

Religion, Aging, and Health Survey, 2001 [United States] (#3255)

Census of Population and Housing, 2000 [United States]: Special Tabulation on Aging (#13577)

2. CENSUS BUREAU: Data from the State and Local Government Employee-Retirement Systems survey is now available for 2004 (September 2005). Data tables can be viewed in HTML, ASCII text, and Excel format. Data can be downloaded in Excel and ASCII format. The files contain "[a]nnual data on revenues, expenditures, financial assets and membership for public employee-retirement systems. Data are shown for individual retirement systems as well as aggregately at the national, state and local levels."


II. Reports and articles:


A. "OASDI (Old-Age and Survivors Insurance and Disability Insurance) Monthly Statistics, August 2005," (September 2005, HTML and .pdf format).

B. "SSI (Supplementary Security Income) Monthly Statistics, August 2005" (September 2005, HTML and .pdf format).

4. CONGRESSIONAL BUDGET OFFICE REPORT: "A Guide to Understanding the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation," (September 2005, .pdf format, 25p.).


A. "How Inflated Published Prices Affect Drugs Considered for the Federal Upper Limit List," (US Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General, OEI-03-05-00350, September 2005, .pdf format, 15p.).

B. "Review of Services Provided by Inhalation Drug Suppliers," (S Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General, OEI-01-05-00090, September 2005, 27p.).


This report determines the nature and extent of dispensing services that Medicare beneficiaries received from inhalation drug suppliers in 2003. In tandem with drug payment cuts mandated by the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003, CMS raised the dispensing fee from $5 to an interim amount of $57 for a 30-day drug supply. It did so based in large part on a report sponsored by the American Association for Homecare stating that beneficiaries receive numerous, important services from their suppliers. CMS is preparing to set a new dispensing fee for 2006. OIG found that the most common service beneficiaries received was contact for drug refills. Sixty percent of beneficiaries received at least one contact for a monthly drug refill, however, 31 percent of beneficiaries who should have been contacted for a refill were not contacted pursuant to the Medicare Program Integrity Manual. Suppliers contacted physicians' offices for about half of beneficiaries. Less than a third of beneficiaries had their medication compliance reviewed by their suppliers. Few beneficiaries received more intensive services such as education, care plan revision, or a respiratory assessment, and 16 percent of beneficiaries received no services at all. Other services were less common. Refill contacts composed 56 percent of services, while the next most common service, medication compliance reviews, composed 15 percent of services. The most common way beneficiaries received services was by telephone; only 1 in 10 beneficiaries received a home visit. OIG also found that beneficiaries were three times more likely to receive a service beyond a refill contact if their drug supplier also provided their respiratory equipment. Service levels dropped off after the first month suppliers billed for drugs. OIG has no recommendations for CMS. It provides this information to assist CMS in setting a new dispensing fee for inhalation drugs.


A. "Impact of Medicare and Medicaid probe questions on health insurance estimates from the National Health Interview Survey, 2004," by Robin A. Cohen and Michael E. Martinez (September 2005).

B. "National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey: 2003 Summary," by Esther Hing, Donald K. Cherry, and David A. Woodwell (Advance Data No. 365, October 2005, .pdf format, 48p.).


A. "Statin Use in the Civilian Noninstitutionalized Medicare Population in 2002," by G. Edward Miller and Marie N. Stagnitti (U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Medical Expenditure Panel Survey Statistical Brief #96, September 2005, .pdf format, 7p.).


This Statistical Brief presents data from the Household Component of the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS-HC) on statin use in the civilian noninstitutionalized Medicare population in 2002. Estimates are presented for subgroups of this population defined by sex, age, race/ethnicity, insurance status, poverty status, and health status.

B. "Trends in Statin Use in the Civilian Noninstitutionalized Medicare Population, 1997 and 2002," by G. Edward Miller and Marie N. Stagnitti (U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Medical Expenditure Panel Survey Statistical Brief #97, September 2005, .pdf format, 8p.).


This Statistical Brief presents data from the Household Component of the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS-HC) on statin use in the U.S. civilian noninstitutionalized Medicare population in 1997 and 2002. Estimates are presented for subgroups of the Medicare population defined by age, race/ethnicity, sex, poverty status, insurance status, and health status.

8. NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH NEWS RELEASE: "Loss of Body Mass Linked to Development of Alzheimer's Disease, Study Finds," (September 26, 2005).

9. AGENCY FOR HEALTHCARE RESEARCH AND QUALITY REPORT: "Effects of Soy on Health Outcomes," by E. Balk, M. Chung, P. Chew, S. Ip, G. Raman, B. Kupelnick, A. Tatsioni, Y. Sun, B. Wolk, D. DeVine, and J. Lau (Evidence Report/Technology Assessment: Number 126, August 2005, HTML and .pdf format, 8p.).


A. "Value of Unpaid Activities by Older Americans Tops $160 Billion Per Year," by Richard W. Johnson and Simone G. Schaner (_Perspectives on Productive Aging_, No. 4, September 2005, .pdf format, 6p.).

Press Release:

B. "Strengthening Private Sources of Retirement Savings for Low-Income Families," by Elizabeth Bell, Adam Carasso, and C. Eugene Steuerle (Opportunity and Ownership Project Brief No. 5, September 2005, .pdf and HTML format, 11p.).


A. "Caring for the Elderly: Is There Any Answer to Rising Health Costs?" (September 26, 2005, RealPlayer or Windows Media Player, running time 1:47:00). Note: A transcript of this panel discussion will be available soon.

B. "Implementing The Medicare Drug Benefit: The Stories Ahead," (September 27, 2005, RealPlayer or Windows Media Player format, running time 1:22:47). Note: A transcript of this panel discussion will be available soon.

12. METLIFE MATURE MARKET INSTITUTE REPORT: "The MetLife Market Survey of Nursing Home and Home Care Costs," (September 2005, .pdf format, 16p.).

13. EMPLOYEE BENEFIT RESEARCH INSTITUTE [EBRI] ISSUE BRIEF: "401(k) Plan Asset Allocation, Account Balances, and Loan Activity in 2004," by Sarah Holden and Jack VanDerhei (Issue Brief No. 285, September 2005, .pdf format, 18p.).

14. ORGANISATION FOR ECONOMIC CO-OPERATION AND DEVELOPMENT NEWSLETTER: _DELSA Newsletter Issue 1_ (September 26, 2005, .pdf format, 12p.).

15. _HEALTH AFFAIRS_ WEB EXLCUSIVE: Note: "_Health Affairs_ Web Exclusives are available free of charge to all Web site visitors for a two-week period following posting. After the free-access period, they are available to nonsubscribers on a pay-per-view basis." This Web Exclusive contains a series of articles produced by the Rand Corporation (the theme is "Health And Spending Of The Future Elderly").

Press Release:

16. AMERICAN PSYCHOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION PRESS RELEASE, ARTICLES: "Psychologists Find More Sensitive Tests For Predicting Alzheimer's As Well As Subtle Changes in Cognition," (September 25, 2005).

Press Release:

The press release contains links (.pdf format) to two articles that appear in the journal _Neuropsychology_:

A. "Early Assessment of Dementia: The Contribution of Different Memory Components," Pauline E.J. Spaan, Jeroen G.W. Raaijmakers, and Cees Jonker (_Neuropsychology_, 2005, Vol. 19, No. 5., .pdf format, p. 629-640).

B. "Failure to Control Prepotent Pathways in Early Stage Dementia of the Alzheimer's Type: Evidence from Dichotic Listening," Janet M. Duchek, and David A. Balota (_Neuropsychology_, 2005, Vol. 19, No. 5., .pdf format, p. 687-695).

17. _SCIENCE_ EDITORIAL: "Social Security Meets Race," by Jeffrey Liebman (_Science_, Vol. 309, No. 5743, September 23, 2005, .pdf and HTML format, p. 1965).


A. "Top-down suppression deficit underlies working memory impairment in normal aging," by Adam Gazzaley, Jeffrey W. Cooney, Jesse Rissman, & Mark D'Esposito (Vol. 8, No. 10, October 2005, .pdf and HTML format, p. 1298-1300).

B. "Targeting BACE1 with siRNAs ameliorates Alzheimer disease neuropathology in a transgenic model," by Oded Singer, Robert A. Marr, Edward Rockenstein, Leslie Crews, Nicole G. Coufal, Fred H. Gage, Inder M. Verma, and Eliezer Masliah (Vol. 8, No. 10, October 2005, .pdf and HTML format, p. 1343-1349).


A. "Effect of a multifaceted intervention on number of antimicrobial prescriptions for suspected urinary tract infections in residents of nursing homes: cluster randomised controlled trial," by Mark Loeb, Kevin Brazil, Lynne Lohfeld, Allison McGeer, Andrew Simor, Kurt Stevenson, Dick Zoutman, Stephanie Smith, Xiwu Liu, and Stephen D. Walter (Vol. 331, No. 7518, September 24, 2005, .pdf and HTML format, p. 669-672).

Note: The following articles focus on the issue of euthanasia in the United Kingdom.

B. "Time for change," by M. A. Branthwaite (Vol. 331, No. 7518, September 24, 2005, .pdf and HTML format, p. 681-683).

C. "Legalised euthanasia will violate the rights of vulnerable patients," by R. J. D. George, I. G. Finlay, and David Jeffrey (Vol. 331, No. 7518, September 24, 2005, .pdf and HTML format, p. 684-685).

D. "Changes in BMA policy on assisted dying," by Ann Sommerville (Vol. 331, No. 7518, September 24, 2005, .pdf and HTML format, p. 686-688).

E. "Moral dimensions," by Torbjörn Tännsjö (Vol. 331, No. 7518, September 24, 2005, .pdf and HTML format, p. 689-691).

F. "Dutch experience of monitoring euthanasia," by Bregje D. Onwuteaka-Philipsen, Agnes van der Heide, Martien T. Muller, Mette Rurup, Judith A. C. Rietjens, Jean-Jacques Georges, Astrid M. Vrakking, Jacqueline M. Cuperus-Bosma, Gerrit van der Wal, and Paul J. van der Maas (Vol. 331, No. 7518, September 24, 2005, .pdf and HTML format, p. 691-693).

20. _NEWSWEEK_ ARTICLE: "Avoiding Dementia: Fitness and Your Brain," by Steven K. Feske (October 3, 2005).


III. Working Papers:

21. INSTITUTE FOR BEHAVIORAL SCIENCE, POPULATION AGING CENTER (UNIVERSITY OF COLORADO-BOULDER): "'Taking Care of My Own Blood': Older Women's Relationships to their Households in Agincourt," by Enid J. Schatz (PAC2005-06, September 2005, .pdf format, 21p.).


The implications of aging populations, which in the more developed world center around issues of social security, health service provision, and eldercare, are further complicated in areas of the developing world with high prevalence of HIV/AIDS. Elders are being asked to take on additional financial, emotional and physical responsibilities due to the HIV/AIDS-related illnesses and death of their children. The Agincourt Health and Population Unit fieldsite, from which this study's ethnographic and survey data come, is situated in the rural north-east of South Africa, in a province with an estimated 33% prevalence of HIV/AIDS. Women in the African context are bearing much of the burden of care related to HIV/AIDS. In this context, I examine the intersection of age and gender, exploring the roles that older women, in particular, are playing in their households, and how those roles are affected by the presence of illness and death of prime-aged adults. Using a mix of quantitative and qualitative data, I show the high percentage of children and adults living in a household with an older woman, and, further, the importance of the caretaking roles older women are taking on in the households in which they live.


A. "Household Saving Rates and the Design of Social Security Programmes: Evidence from a Country Panel," by Richard Disney (CESifo Working Paper No. 1541, September 2005, .pdf format, 35p.).


I argue that the offsetting effect of social security contributions on household retirement saving depends on how closely the social security programme imitates a private retirement saving plan (i.e. the 'actuarial' component of the social security programme) - the closer the design of the programme to a private retirement saving plan, the higher the offset. I estimate the determinants of household saving rates in a cross-country panel, augmenting standard measures of social security programme generosity and cost by indicators that proxy the actuarial component of the programme. These indicators affect saving rates as predicted; moreover they also affect labour force participation rates of older women (but not men). The findings are consistent with the view that more actuarially-based public programmes are treated by participants as a mandatory saving programme rather than as a tax-and-transfer system, thereby raising labour force participation rates but also increasing the programme's substitutability for private retirement saving.

B. "The International Spillover Effects of Pension Reform," by Yvonne Adema, Lex Meijdam, and Harrie A. A. Ve (CESifo Working Paper No. 1540, September 2005, .pdf format, 30p.).


This paper explores how pension reforms in countries with PAYG schemes affect countries with funded systems. We use a two-country two-period overlapping-generations model, where the countries only differ in their pension systems. We distinguish between the case where a reform potentially leads to a Pareto improvement in the PAYG country, and where this is impossible. In the latter case the funded country shares both in the costs and the benefits of the reform. However, if a Pareto-improving pension reform is feasible in the PAYG country, a Pareto improvement in the funded country is not guaranteed.

C. "Public Pensions and Capital Accumulation: The Case of Brazil," by Gerhard Glomm, Jürgen Jung, and Changmin Lee Chung (CESifo Working Paper No. 1539, September 2005, .pdf format, 31p.).


We use an OLG model to study the effects of the generous public sector pension system in Brazil. In our model there are two types of workers, one working in the private sector, the other working in the public sector. Public workers produce infrastructure or education services. We find that reducing generosity of the public sector pensions has large effects on capital accumulation and steady state income.

D. "Pension, Fertility, and Education," by Volker Meier and Matthias Wrede (CESifo Working Paper No. 1521, August 2005, .pdf format, 25p.).


A pay-as-you-go pension scheme is associated with positive externalities of having children and providing them with human capital. In a framework with heterogeneity in productivity, and stochastic and endogenous investment in fertility and education, we discuss internalization policies associated with child benefits in the pension formula. The second-best scheme displays both a benefit contingent on the contributions of children and a purely fertility-related component.


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

23. American Journal of Epidemiology (Vol, 162, No. 7, October 1, 2005).

24. American Journal of Public Health (Vol. 95, No. 10, October 2005). Note: Full electronic text of this journal is available in the ProQuest Research Library and the EBSCO Host Academic Search Elite Database. Check your library for the availability of these databases and this issue.

25. Journals of Gerontology Series A: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences (Vol. 60, No. 9, September 2005). Note: Full electronic text of this journal is available in the ProQuest Research Library. Check your library for the availability of this database and this issue.

26. 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.

Omega, Journal of Death and Dying (Vol. 51, No. 1, 2005).

27. 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 September 28, 2005:

B. Alzheimer's Disease: Literature for the week of September 28, 2005:

C. Parkinson's Disease: Literature for the week of September 28, 2005:

D. Prostate Cancer: Literature for the week of September 28, 2005:

E. Stem Cell Research: Literature for the week of September 28, 2005:

F. Ophthalmology: Literature for the week of September 28, 2005:

AMEDEO Literature Guide:


V. Legislation Information Updates:

28. US HOUSE COMMITTEE ON WAYS AND MEANS, SUBCOMMITTEE ON HEALTH, HEARING TESTIMONY: "Hearing on the Medicare Value-Based Purchasing for Physicians Act,"a hearing held September 29, 2005.

Hearing testimony:

29. US SENATE SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON AGING HEARING TESTIMONY: "The Impact of Direct-to-Consumer Drug Advertising on Seniors' Health and Health Care Costs,"a hearing held September 29, 2005.

Hearing testimony:


Hearing testimony (.pdf format):

31. US SENATE COMMITTEE ON FINANCE HEARING PUBLICATION: "Long-Term Outlook for Social Security," a hearing held February 2, 2005 (S.Hrg. 109-102, .pdf format, 89p.).




Charlie Fiss
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