Current Awareness in Aging Research (CAAR) Report #308--October 13, 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. NATIONAL CENTER FOR HEALTH STATISTICS: "Interactive Data Tables: Health Data for All Ages," (October 2005). "The tables present pre-tabulated data by age, gender, race/ethnicity and geographic area, and are organized in folders by life stages and topics: Infants, Children, and Adolescents; Adults and Older Adults; State Data; and, Asthma Data on Demand."

2. HEALTH AND RETIREMENT STUDY: "Data Alert: 2002 HRS Core (Final Release, Version 1.0): Delete one case from the HRS 2002 Final Core Data," (October 11, 2005).

One case in the 2002 HRS Core Final Release data should be deleted. Please delete the case with HHID 053846 and PN 011 from your data files. The case with HHID 053846 and PN 010 was incorrectly marked as being married in the course of her interview. In fact, 010 was not married, and 010 and 011 are one and the same person. The error resulted in another interview being taken several months later with the same respondent, but with a PN assignment of 011. This 011 interview should not be included in the 2002 Core Final Release (Version 1.0) data.

3. NACDA/ICPSR: The National Archive of Computerized Data on Aging at the Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research, University of Michigan, 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:

ACTIVE (Advanced Cognitive Training for Independent and Vital Elderly), 1999-2001 [United States] (#4248)


II. Reports and articles:


A. "Overview of the Long-Term Care Partnership Program," (GAO-05-1021R, September 2005, .pdf format, 35p.).

B. "Medicare: More Effective Screening and Stronger Enrollment Standards Needed for Medical Equipment Suppliers," (GAO-05-656, September 2005, .pdf format, 48p.).

Note: These are temporary addresses. GAO reports are always available at:


A. "Medicare and State Health Care Programs: Fraud and Abuse; Safe Harbor for Certain Electronic Prescribing Arrangements Under the Anti-Kickback Statute,"(October 11, 2005, .pdf format, 54p.).


As required by the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003 (MMA), Public Law 108-173, this proposed rule would establish a new safe harbor under the Federal anti-kickback statute for certain arrangements involving the provision of electronic prescribing technology. Specifically, the safe harbor would protect certain arrangements involving hospitals, group practices, and prescription drug plan (PDP) sponsors and Medicare Advantage (MA) organizations that provide to specified recipients certain nonmonetary remuneration in the form of hardware, software, or information technology and training services necessary and used solely to receive and transmit electronic prescription drug information. In addition, using our separate legal authority under section 1128B(b)(3)(E) of the Social Security Act (the 'Act'), we are also proposing separate safe harbor protection for certain electronic health records software and directly related training services. These exceptions are consistent with the President's goal of achieving widespread adoption of interoperable electronic health records for the purpose of improving the quality and efficiency of health care, while maintaining the levels of security and privacy that consumers expect.

B. "Adequacy of Medicare Part B Drug Reimbursement to Physician Practices for the Treatment of Cancer Patients," (A-06-05-00024, September 2005, .pdf format, 40p.).


Section 303 of the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act (MMA) of 2003 established a new methodology for Medicare Part B reimbursement of drugs and biologicals. Section 303 required OIG to report to Congress on the adequacy of the reimbursement rates under the new methodology. The objective of this review was to determine whether physician practices in the specialties of hematology, hematology/oncology, and medical oncology could purchase drugs for the treatment of cancer patients at the MMA-established reimbursement rates.

We concluded that physician practices in the specialties of hematology, hematology/oncology, and medical oncology could generally purchase drugs for the treatment of cancer patients at less than the MMA-established reimbursement rates. We based this conclusion on a statistical estimate of average prices paid by physician practices for 39 payment codes that constituted more than 94 percent of the $4.5 billion in total 2004 Medicare-allowed amounts for drugs associated with these 3 specialties. We also based the conclusion on a statistical estimate of the percentage of practice/months for which physician practices were able to purchase drugs at less than the reimbursement amount. Overall, we estimated that the average prices paid for drugs associated with 35 of the 39 payment codes were less than the reimbursement amounts. In addition, we estimated that for at least half of the practice/months, the physician practices could purchase the drugs at less than the reimbursement amounts for 35 of the 39 codes.

We recommended that Congress consider the results of our review in any deliberations regarding the Medicare Part B reimbursement methodology for drugs for the treatment of cancer patients. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services stated that the report provides valuable information about the payment adequacy for Part B drugs used in cancer treatment.


A. "Medicare expands efforts to fight fraud," (October 7, 2005).

B. "CMS will require nursing homes to vaccinate residents against the flu," (October 7, 2005).

7. NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH: "National Diabetes Education Program Updates Campaign Empowering Older Adults to Manage Their Diabetes," (October 11, 2005).

8. AUSTRALIAN DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND AGEING PRESS RELEASE: "New national organisation for over 50's launched," (October 12, 2005).


A. "Goodbye to Complacency: Financial Literacy Education in the U.S. 2000-2005," by Lois A. Vitt, Gwen M. Reichbach, Jamie L. Kent, and Jurg K. Siegenthaler (September 2005, .pdf format, 127p.).


Since 2000, public and private sector organizations intensified and escalated their commitment to help Americans learn to manage, save, and invest their money. Personal finance education programs multiplied and spread across the U.S. even as consumer debt deepened, the stock market tanked in the 3rd quarter of 2000, terrorist attacks stunned the World on 9/11/2001, and the War on Terrorism commenced on two fronts. During the same period, corporate and other Wall Street scandals surfaced, policymakers clashed over Social Security reform, and to stay competitive, employers outsourced jobs and continued to transform pension and health benefits into models that require more money from, and more decision-making, by workers. In 2005, nearly everyone understands that times have changed. Americans also are becoming increasingly aware that they must become more responsible for their own future financial well being. This report updates a study commissioned and published by the Fannie Mae Foundation in 2000, Personal Finance and the Rush to Competence: Financial Literacy Education in the United States. It is an overview of the proliferation and effectiveness of the personal financial education efforts undertaken during the past five years to help Americans achieve competence in personal finance.

B. "Rethinking the Role of Older Workers: Promoting Older Worker Employment in Europe and Japan," (October 2005, .pdf format, 32p.).


Older worker employment and retirement trends in the European Union (EU) and Japan as well as the United States are examined in this Issue Brief by Sara E. Rix of the AARP Public Policy Institute. The brief presents responses by the EU and Japan to the aging of their populations and the soaring costs of pensions, with an analysis of their goals and initiatives to foster older worker employment.

10. EMPLOYEE BENEFIT RESEARCH INSTITUTE ISSUE BRIEF: "Employment-Based Retirement Plan Participation: Geographic Differences and Trends, 2004," by Craig Copeland (Issue Brief No. 286, October 2005, .pdf format, 33p.).


This Issue Brief examines the level of participation by workers in public- and private-sector employment-based pension and retirement plans, based on the U.S. Census Bureau's March 2005 Current Population Survey (CPS), the most recent data currently available.

Press Release:

11. NATIONAL CENTRE FOR SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC MODELLING [NATSEM] CONFERENCE PAPER: "Analysing Australia's Ageing Population: A Demographic Picture," by Ann Harding (Online Conference Paper CP0512, September 2005, .pdf format, 9p.).


The decline in fertility allied with longer lifespan is creating population ageing, where a growing proportion of the population is aged 65 years and over. Population ageing is creating fiscal pressures for governments, due to forecast slower economic growth rates and projected higher expenditures (particularly on health and aged care). Current research suggests that many of tomorrows baby boomer retirees have not yet saved sufficient to finance a comfortable retirement during the decades of retirement that lie ahead of them. Many will need to work somewhat longer than they currently intend and save somewhat harder. At the same time, government is encouraging employers to look more favourably upon employing mature age workers, with the forthcoming labour force shortages providing an additional incentive for employers to revise their approaches.

12. MAX PLANCK INSTITUTE FOR DEMOGRAPHIC RESEARCH [ROSTOCK, GERMANY] CONFERENCE PAPER: "Reductions in the incidence of care need in West and East Germany between 1991 and 2003: compression-of-morbidity or policy effect?" by Uta Ziegler and Gabriele Doblhammer (June 2005, .pdf format, 15p.).


Is the increase in the share of the older population in Germany inevitably connected with a parallel increase in frail people? We analyse the development of care need in West and East Germany between 1991 and 2003 on the basis of longitudinal data from the German Socio- Economic panel. A lower transition risk into care need for men exists in the period 1998-2003 as compared to the period 1991-1997. However, we are not sure if this effect is influenced by the introduction of the public Long-Term Care Need Insurance in 1995.


A. "Pomegranate fruit juice for chemoprevention and chemotherapy of prostate cancer," by Arshi Malik, Farrukh Afaq, Sami Sarfaraz, Vaqar M. Adhami, Deeba N. Syed, and Hasan Mukhtar (Vol. 102, No. 41, October 11, 2005, .pdf and HTML format, p. 14813-14818).

B. "Corroboration of in vivo cartilage pressures with implications for synovial joint tribology and osteoarthritis causation," by Kjirste C. Morrell, W. Andrew Hodge, David E. Krebs, and Robert W. Mann (Vol. 102, No. 41, October 11, 2005, .pdf and HTML format, p. 14819-14824).

C. "A unique gene expression signature discriminates familial Alzheimer's disease mutation carriers from their wild-type siblings," by Yosuke Nagasaka, Karin Dillner, Hayao Ebise, Reiji Teramoto, Hiroyuki Nakagawa, Lena Lilius, Karin Axelman, Charlotte Forsell, Akira Ito, Bengt Winblad, Toru Kimura, and Caroline Graff (Vol. 102, No. 41, October 11, 2005, .pdf and HTML format, p. 14854-14859).


A. "Trends in Serum Lipids and Lipoproteins of Adults, 1960-2002," by Margaret D. Carroll, David A. Lacher, Paul D. Sorlie, James I. Cleeman, David J. Gordon, Michael Wolz, Scott M. Grundy, and Clifford L. Johnson (Vol. 294, No. 14, October 12, 2005, .pdf and HTML format, p. 1773-1781).

B. "Impact of Candesartan on Nonfatal Myocardial Infarction and Cardiovascular Death in Patients With Heart Failure," by Catherine Demers, John J. V. McMurray, Karl Swedberg, Marc A. Pfeffer, Christopher B. Granger, Bertil Olofsson, Robert S. McKelvie, Jan Östergren; Eric L. Michelson; Peter A. Johansson, Duolao Wang, and Salim Yusuf for the CHARM Investigators (Vol. 294, No. 14, October 12, 2005, .pdf and HTML format, p. 1794-1798).


A. "Randomised controlled trial of prevention of falls in people aged 75 with severe visual impairment: the VIP trial," by A. John Campbell, M. Clare Robertson, Steven J. La Grow, Ngaire M. Kerse, Gordon F. Sanderson, Robert J. Jacobs, Dianne M. Sharp, and Leigh A. Hale (Vol. 331, No. 7520, October 8, 2005, .pdf and HTML format, p. 817-820).

B. "How do elderly patients decide where to go for major surgery? Telephone interview survey," by Lisa M. Schwartz, Steven Woloshin, John D. Birkmeyer (Vol. 331, No. 7520, October 8, 2005, .pdf and HTML format, p. 821-824).


III. Working Papers:

16. NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH: "Race and Health Disparities Among Seniors in Urban Areas in Brazil," by Antonio J. Trujillo, John A. Vernon, Laura Rodriguez Wong, and Gustavo Angeles (Working Paper No. 11690, October 2005, .pdf format, 35p.).


White seniors report better health than Black seniors in urban areas in Sao Paulo, Brazil. This is the case even after controlling for baseline health conditions and several demographic, socio-economic and family support characteristics. Furthermore, adjusted racial disparities in self-reported health are larger than the disparities found using alternative measures of functional health. Our empirical research in this paper suggests that the two most important factors driving racial disparities in health among seniors (in our sample) are historical differences in rural living conditions and current income. Present economic conditions are more relevant to racial disparities among poor seniors than among rich seniors. Moreover, racial differences in health not attributable to observable characteristics are more important when comparing individuals in the upper half of the income distribution.

17. POPULATION AGING RESEARCH CENTER (UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA):" Do Children Learn to Save from Their Parents?," by John Knowles and Andrew Postlewaite (PARC Working Paper Series WPS 05-06, June 2005, .pdf format, 51p.).


It is well-known that small differences in discount rates, persisting over generations, make it much easier to explain US wealth inequality across households as an equilibrium outcome. At the individual level, recent micro studies suggest that variations in preferences or in planning behavior are plausible candidates to explain inequality in pre-retirement savings among households in similar circumstances. In this paper, we argue that if such differences in behavior are really a function of an agent's basic personality, then we would expect parents and children to share such traits, and so parental savings behavior should predict both savings and other investment decisions of the children such as education. We formalize this argument using a simple life-cycle model and estimate family savings effects on household data in the PSID. In our model such family effects can be interpreted as arising from either patience or self control. We find that family effects are significant both statistically and economically; parental savings behavior explains both education and savings choices of childrens' households. We also find that these effects are linked to self reports about attitudes toward planning for the future, but not to reported willingness to defer consumption.

18. CESifo (CENTER FOR ECONOMIC STUDIES (CES) AND THE IFO INSTITUTE FOR ECONOMIC RESEARCH [UNIVERSITY OF MUNICH, GERMANY]): "Demographic Change and Public Education Spending: A Conflict between Young and Old?," by Ueli Grob and Stefan C. Wolter (Working Paper No. 1555, October 2005, .pdf format, 26p.).


Demographic change in industrial countries will influence educational spending in potentially two ways. On the one hand, the decline in the number of school-age children should alleviate the financial pressure. On the other hand, the theoretical/empirical literature has established that the concomitantly increasing proportion of elderly in the population can influence the propensity of politicians to spend on education. Using a panel of the Swiss Cantons for the period from 1990 to 2002, we find that the education system has exhibited little elasticity in adjusting to changes in the school-age population, and that the share of the elderly population has a significantly negative influence on the willingness to spend on public education.,302752&_dad=portal&_schema=PORTAL&p_file_id=11856

Click on "Download PDF" at the bottom of the abstract for link to full text.

19. SCHOOL OF ECONOMICS AND COMMERCIAL LAW, GOTEBORG UNIVERSITY [SWEDEN]: "The Dark Side of Wage Indexed Pensions," by Evert Carlsson and Karl Erlandzon (Working Paper No. 178, September 2005, .pdf format, 44p.).


This paper investigates some welfare effects of forced saving through a mandatory pension scheme. The framework for the analysis is a life-cycle model of a borrowing constrained individual´s consumption and portfolio choice in the presence of uncertain labour income and realistically calibrated tax and pension systems. Pension benefits stem from both a defined benefit and a notionally defined contribution part, the latter being indexed to stochastic aggregate labour income. We show that agents attribute little value to their pension savings in early life. Furthermore, we estimate the welfare loss for individuals in mid-life associated with the dependency between pension returns and labour income growth to 1.2% in annual consumption.


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

20. Aging and Mental Health (Vol. 9, No. 6, November 2005).

21. Journal of Pension Economics and Finance (Vol. 4, No. 3, November 2005).

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.

Health and Social Work (Vol. 30, No. 3, 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.

Journal of Gerontological Social Work (Vol. 45, No. 1/2, 2005).

Journal of Marriage and the Family (Vol. 67, No. 4, 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.

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 October 12, 2005:

B. Alzheimer's Disease: Literature for the week of October 12, 2005:

C. Parkinson's Disease: Literature for the week of October 12, 2005:

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

E. Stem Cell Research: Literature for the week of October 12, 2005:

F. Ophthalmology: Literature for the week of October 12, 2005:

AMEDEO Literature Guide:


V. Funding Opportunities:

24. NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH: "Mentored Research Scientist Development Award (K01)," (National Institute on Aging, in conjunction with other agencies, PA-06-001, October 4, 2005).


VI. Conferences:

25. AARP: "International Forum on Long-Term Care: Delivering Quality Care with a Global Workforce," (Washington DC, October 20, 2005). The purpose of this conference is to examine issues surrounding the long-term care workforce.

26. NATIONAL ACADEMY ON AN AGING SOCIETY: The 2005 White House Conference on Aging will take place on December 11-14th in Washington, DC at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel. White House Conferences on Aging are decennial events held to develop recommendations for the President and Congress on issues, policy, and research in the field of aging.

To learn more about the conference and to learn more about the recommendations and contributions made by GSA, the Academy, and other aging organizations:

The conference web site can be found at:

27. STATISTICAL AND APPLIED MATHEMATICAL SCIENCES INSTITUTE: "2004-2005 Program on Latent Variable Models in the Social Sciences," a workshop to be held November 10-11, 2005 (Research Triangle Park, NC). The application deadline is November 1, 2005.

28. CONFERENCEALERTS.COM: has recently updated its gerontology conferences page.


VII. Legislation Information Updates:

29. US HOUSE COMMITTEE ON WAYS AND MEANS, SUBCOMMITTEE ON HEALTH, HEARING TESTIMONY: "Hearing on Gainsharing," a hearing held October 7, 2005.

Hearing testimony:


VIII. Websites of Interest:

30. FLORIDA INTERNATIONAL UNIVERSITY: "National Resource Center on Nutrition, Physical Activity and Aging." The mission of the Center is "[t]o increase food and nutrition services in home and community-based social, health, and long-term care systems serving older adults."




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