Current Awareness in Aging Research (CAAR) Report #412--November 15, 2007

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. HUMAN MORTALITY DATABASE: Note: HMD requires free registration before providing data. The following updates have been added to the database.

- Nov. 9, 2007 - Data for Switzerland updated through 2006.

Data availability:

Data access:


II. Reports and articles:


A. "OASDI (Old-Age and Survivors Insurance and Disability Insurance) Monthly Statistics, September 2007" (October 2007, HTML and .pdf format).

B. "SSI (Supplemental Security Income) Monthly Statistics, September 2007 (October 2007, HTML and .pdf format).


3. US DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES, OFFICE OF THE INSPECTOR GENERAL REPORT: "Generic Drug Utilization in the Medicare Part D Program" (OEI-05-07-00130, November 2007, .pdf format, 30p.).


We found that Part D achieved a high level of generic drug use during the first two quarters of 2006. Under Part D, generic drugs were dispensed 88 percent of the time when generic substitutes were available. However, 37 percent of prescriptions were for drugs that have no generic substitutes, limiting opportunities to dispense generics. Overall, 56 percent of all drugs dispensed were generic drugs.

Our findings indicate that variation in the rate of single-source drug prescribing primarily accounted for variation in generic drug utilization. Therefore, to achieve increases in generic drug utilization, Part D plans may realize gains by encouraging the prescribing of multisource drugs, which have generic equivalents. However, such efforts should be undertaken with caution to ensure that beneficiaries maintain access to appropriate treatment.

In response to our draft report, CMS generally concurred with our findings. CMS noted differences between our and CMSs calculation of generic drug utilization and suggested that this may be because of its inclusion of multisource brand name drugs in its measure of generic drug utilization. We did not include multisource brand name drug utilization data in our measure of generic drug utilization because these data are inconsistent with the definition of generic drugs under Part D.


4. US DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES SUBSTANCE ABUSE AND MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES ADMINISTRATION REPORT: "Older Adults in Substance Abuse Treatment, 2005," (Drug and Alcohol Services Information System, November 2007, .pdf and HTML format, 4p.).


5. US MEDICARE PAYMENT ADVISORY COMMISSION: MEETING TRANSCRIPT: Transcript of the MedPac meeting of Nov. 8-9, 2007, held in Washington, DC (.pdf format, 428p.) is available at the site.

See under Nov. 8-9, 2007 listing.

More information about MedPac:


6. AUSTRALIAN BUREAU OF STATISTICS REPORT: "Deaths, Australia, 2006" (November 2007, .pdf format, 94p., with data in .zip compressed Microsoft Excel format for states and territories).



A. Health Reports (Vol. 18, No. 4, 2007, HTML and .pdf format). Featured articles in this issue are: "Work stress among health care providers," by Kathryn Wilkins, and "Hip fracture outcomes in the household population," by Gisele Carriere.

B. "Registered retirement savings plan contributions: 2006." (Nov. 8, 2007).


8. STATISTICS NETHERLANDS WEB MAGAZINE ARTICLE: "Women's pension build-up still trailing," by Wim de Rooij and Alex Hellenthal (Nov. 6, 2007).



A. "Prescription Drugs and Medicare Part D: A Report on Access, Satisfaction, and Cost," by Teresa A. Keenan (November 2007, .pdf format, 33p.).

B. "Preparation for Retirement: The Haves and Have-Nots," by Colette Thayer (November 2007, .pdf format, 20p.).

C. "Are Americans Talking with Their Parents About Independent Living? A 2007 Study Among Boomer Women," by Laura Skufca (November 2007, .pdf format, 10p.).

D. "Funeral and Burial Planners Survey," by Lona Choi-Allum (November 2007, .pdf format, 32p.).

E. "Issues in Manufactured Housing," by Jean C. Accius (October 2007, HTML and .pdf format, 2p.).


10. LONGEVITY SCIENCE REPORT: "New Findings on Human Longevity Predictors," by Leonard Gavrilov and Natalia Gavrilova," to be presented at the Gerontological Society of America symposium "Quantitative Approaches to Aging and Exceptional Longevity," in San Francisco, California, Nov. 19, 2007).


Centenarians (persons living to age 100 and over) represent a population, which could be useful in identifying factors leading to long life and avoidance of fatal diseases. This study explores whether people living to 100 and beyond were any different from their peers at their middle age (30 years) in terms of their physical characteristics (height and body build), occupation and marital status. A random representative sample of 240 men born in 1887 and survived to age 100 was selected from the US Social Security Administration database. These records of men with exceptional longevity were then linked to the US WWI draft registration cards collected in 1917 when these men were 30 years old. This allowed us to validate 171 cases of exceptional longevity, and obtain information on vital characteristics of male centenarians when they were young adults. Randomly selected shorter-lived men matched with centenarian men by birth year, race and county of draft registration were used as controls. This approach allowed us to eliminate confounding effects of birth cohort, race and place of draft registration on survival. It was found that the 'stout' body build (being in the heaviest 15% of population) was negatively associated with survival to age 100 years. Both farming and having large number of children (4+) at age 30 significantly increased the chances of exceptional longevity by 100-200%. The effects of immigration status, marital status, and body height on longevity were less important, and they were statistically insignificant in the studied data set. This study provides the first estimates of height, body build and other vital characteristics for the future centenarians at their young adult ages, and shows that detrimental effects of obesity may have an exceptionally long time range, and that obesity at young adult age (30 years) is predictive for almost three times lower chances of survival to age 100 years.

More information on Longevity Science:


11. BOSTON COLLEGE CENTER FOR RETIREMENT RESEARCH BRIEF: "State and Local Pensions Are Different From Private Plans," by Alicia H. Munnell and Mauricio Soto (SLP#1, November 2007, .pdf format, 10p.). Links to an introduction and full text are available at:


12. METLIFE REPORT: "Searching for the Silver Bullet: Leading Edge Solutions for Leveraging an Aging Workforce" (MetLife Mature Market Institute/David DeLong & Associates, November 2007, .pdf format, 30p.).


13. NATIONAL CONFERENCE OF STATE LEGISLATURES REPORT: "Pensions and Retirement Plan Enactments in 2007 State Legislatures," by Ronald K. Snell (October 2007).



A. "Long-term Care Insurance Probed," by Mike Mitka (Capital Health Call extract, Vol. 298, No. 18, Nov. 14, 2007, p. 2129).

B. Bipolar Disorder in Later Life, edited by Martha Sajatovic and Frederic C. Blow, reviewed by Mark H. Fleisher (Book Review extract, Vol. 298, No. 18, Nov. 14, 2007, p. 2202-2203).


15. NEW ENGLAND JOURNAL OF MEDICINE EDITORIAL EXTRACT: "Anabolic Therapy in Glucocorticoid-Induced Osteoporosis," by Philip N. Sambrook (Vol. 357, No. 20, Nov. 15, 2007, p. 2084-2086).


16. US NEWS AND WORLD REPORT ARTICLE: "Shopping for a Drug Plan: It's time to take a look around and assess your Part D options," by Adam Voiland (Nov. 7, 2007).


III. Working Papers:

17. MICHIGAN RETIREMENT RESEARCH CENTER: Note: links to abstracts and full text are available at each address.

A. "Burnout and the Retirement Decision," by Nicole Maestas and Xiaoyan Li (WP 2007-166, October 2007, .pdf format, 53p.).

B. "Managing the Risk of Life," by Adeline Delavande and Robert J. Willis (WP 2007-167, October 2007, .pdf format, 40p.).

C. "Estimating the Health Effects of Retirement," by John Bound and Timothy A. Waidman (WP 2007-168, October 2007, .pdf format, 33p.).

D. "The Effects of Health Insurance and Self-Insurance on Retirement Behavior," by Eric French and John Bailey Jones (WP 2007-170, October 2007, .pdf format, 89p.).

E. "Housing Wealth and Retirement Timing," by Martin Farnham and Purvi Sevak (WP 2007-172, October 2007, .pdf format, 42p.).


18. NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH: "The Political-Economy Positive Role of the Social Security System in Sustaining Immigration (But Not Vice Versa)," by Edith Sand and Assaf Razin (w13598, November 2007, .pdf format, 42p.).


In the political-economy debate people express the idea that immigrants are good because they can help pay for the old, thus help sustaining the social security system. In addition, the median voter whose income derives from wages will wish to keep out the immigrants who will depress his/her wage. Therefore the decisive voter will keep migrants out. The paper addresses these two accepted propositions. For this purpose we develop an OLG political economy model of social security and migration to explore how migration policy and a pay-as-you-go (PAYG) social security system are jointly determined. The sub-game perfect Markov, depends on the different patterns of fertility rates among native born and migrants. Our analysis demonstrates that a social security system may change the first proposition significantly because the median voter may opt to bring in migrants to help him/her during retirement. As for the second proposition we get a significantly nuanced version. Not always immigration helps sustain the social security.


19. FEDERAL RESERVE BANK OF BOSTON [MASSACHUSETTS]: "The Labor Market for Direct Care Workers," by Reagan Baughman and Kristin Smith (NEPPC DP No. 07-4, November 2007, .pdf format, 41p.). Links to an abstract and full text are available at:


20. UNIVERSITY OF UTAH [SALT LAKE CITY] INSTITUTE OF PUBLIC AND INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS (IPIA): "HIV/AIDS and the Living Arrangements of Older Persons across the Sub-Saharan African region," by Zachary Zimmer (WP 2007-11-21, November 2007, .pdf format, 38p.). Links to an abstract and full text are available at: 001&CISOBOX=1&REC=13

Click on "Access this item." at the top of the page, for link to full text.


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

21. American Journal of Epidemiology (Vol. 166, No. 11, Dec. 1, 2007).

22. Journal of Gerontological Social Work (Vol. 50, No. 1/2, 2007).

23. Journals of Gerontology (A): Biological and Medical Sciences (Vols. 62A, Nos. 11, November 2007). Note: Full text of these journals are available in the ProQuest Research Library. Check your library for availability of this database and these issues.


24. 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 Nov. 14, 2007:

B. Alzheimer's Disease: Literature for the week of Nov. 14, 2007:

C. Parkinson's Disease: Literature for the week of Nov. 14, 2007:

D. Prostate Cancer: Literature for the week of Nov. 14, 2007:

E. Stem Cell Research: Literature for the week of Nov. 14, 2007:

F. Ophthalmology: Literature for the week of Nov. 14, 2007:

AMEDEO Literature Guide:


V. Books:

25. WILEY PUBLICATIONS BOOK: Changes in Decision-Making Capacity in Older Adults: Assessment and Intervention, by Sara H. Qualls, Michael A. Smyer (2007, 368p., ISBN: 978-0-470-03798-0). For more information see:


VI. Funding Opportunities:


A. "The Center for Retirement Research at Boston College announces the 2008 Dissertation Fellowships 'Call for Proposals'. This annual program is funded by the U.S. Social Security Administration. The Dissertation Fellowships provide funding opportunities for doctoral candidates to pursue quality scholarship on retirement income issues.Up to six fellowships of 28,000 dollars will be awarded. The submission deadline for grant proposals is January 31, 2008 and Fellowship recipients will be announced in March 2008." For more information see:

B. "The Center for Retirement Research at Boston College announces the 2008 Steven H. Sandell Grant Program "Call for Proposals."  This annual program is funded by the U.S. Social Security Administration. The Sandell Program provides the opportunity for junior scholars from a wide variety of academic disciplines and senior scholars working in a new area to pursue projects on retirement income issues. Up to eight grants of 45,000 dollars will be awarded for one-year projects. The submission deadline for grant proposals is January 31, 2008. Grant award recipients will be announced in March 2008." For more information see:


VII. Conferences:

27. AARP/EAST WEST CENTER: "Community 50+ Asia: Building the Future Together," to be held Jan. 23-25, 2008, in Honolulu, Hawai'i. For more information see:


28. CONFERENCEALERTS.COM: has recently added the following conferences, which may be of interest to researchers in aging.

Dec. 8-10, 2007: "1st Geriatric Study Tour In Israel," to be held in Jerusalem and Beer Sheva, Israel.

Mar. 24-26, 2008: "Neuroimaging in Dementia," to be held in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Oct. 20-24, 2008: "The 38th Annual Meeting of the International Continence Society (ICS)," to be held in Cairo, Egypt.

and scroll to the listed conferences.


VIII. Legislation Information Updates:

29. US SENATE SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON AGING HEARING TESTIMONY: "Nursing Home Transparency and Improvement," a hearing held Nov. 15, 2007 (.pdf format). Note: a video transcript may be available (RealPlayer format, running time 2 hours, 27 minutes, 14 seconds).


30. US SENATE FINANCE COMMITTEE HEARING TESTIMONY: "Federal Estate Tax: Uncertainty in Planning Under the Current Law," a hearing held November 14, 2007 (.pdf format).


31. US HOUSE WAYS AND MEANS COMMITTEE, SUBCOMMITTEE ON HEALTH HEARING TESTIMONY: "Hearing on Trends in Nursing Home Ownership and Quality," a hearing held Nov. 15, 2007 (HTML format).

Jack Solock
Director--Data and Information Services Center
Social Sciences Research Services
3313 Social Science
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Madison, WI 53706
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