Current Awareness in Aging Research (CAAR) Report #468--December 18, 2008

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. US CENSUS BUREAU INTERNATIONAL DATABASE UPDATE: "The Census Bureau has updated it's International Database (Dec. 15, 2008). For a completed listing of the modification included in this update, go to:



2. INTEGRATED PUBLIC USE MICRODATA UPDATE: IPUMS at the University of Minnesota announced on Dec. 11, 2008: "Posted remaining linked data samples."

See Dec. 11, 2008 item.

Data Access:


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

Data for Lithuania and Latvia were revised and updated through 2007.

Data availability:

Data access:


4. UK DATA ARCHIVE (ESSEX UNIVERSITY, COLCHESTER, UK): The UK Data Archive has recently added the following datasets to its holdings. Note: There maybe charges or licensing requirements on holdings of the UK Data Archive. For more information see:

SN 6075 -Involved Grandparenting and Child Well-Being, 2007


II. Reports and articles:


A. "The Geographic Distribution and Characteristics of Older Workers in West Virginia: 2004," by Cynthia Taeuber and Matthew R. Graham (Local Employment Dynamics LED-Ow04-WV, December 2008, .pdf format, 12p.).

Scroll to "West Virginia"

B. Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2009 (December 2008, .pdf format, 982p.).


6. US NATIONAL CENTER FOR HEALTH STATISTICS REPORT: "Early Release of Selected Estimates Based on Data From the January-June 2008 National Health Interview Survey" (December 2008, .pdf format). Sections that may be of interest to researchers in aging include: Section 4: Receipt of influenza vaccination; Section 5: Receipt of pneumococcal vaccination; and Section 12: Personal care needs."



A. "SSI (Supplemental Security Income) Monthly Statistics, November 2008" (December 2008, HTML and .pdf format).

B. "State Assistance Programs for SSI Recipients, January 2008" (December 2008, HTML and .pdf format).



A. "Medicare Advantage Organizations: Actual Expenses and Profits Compared to Projections for 2006" (GAO-09-132R, December 2008, .pdf format, 14p.).

B. "Medicare Part D: Opportunities Exist for Improving Information Sent to Enrollees and Scheduling the Annual Election Period" (GAO-09-4, December 2008, .pdf format, 43p.).


9. US DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES, OFFICE OF THE INSPECTOR GENERAL REPORT: "Comparing Special Needs Plan Beneficiaries to Other Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug Plan Beneficiaries" (OEI-05-07-00490, December 2008, .pdf format, 35p.).


On average, Special Needs Plan (SNP) beneficiaries had higher prescription drug utilization and costs than other Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug Plan (MA-PD) beneficiaries in 2006. However, despite SNP beneficiaries' higher rates of drug utilization, SNP and other MA PD beneficiaries were similarly exposed to potentially inappropriate drug pairs.

Congress created the SNP authority to allow Medicare Advantage managed care plans to develop targeted clinical programs to care more effectively for high-risk beneficiaries. Since SNPs became available in 2006, the number of SNPs and SNP beneficiary enrollment have grown rapidly. Policymakers have focused their attention on SNPs because of this growth and because SNPs, like other Medicare Advantage plans, cost more than fee-for-service Medicare. In particular, policymakers have questioned whether SNPs are providing specialized care for special needs individuals.

OIG found that, on average, SNP beneficiaries filled 11 percent more prescriptions than other MA PD beneficiaries. In addition, the average annual prescription cost per SNP beneficiary was 49 percent higher compared to that of other MA-PD beneficiaries. Despite different drug utilization patterns, the type and severity of the potentially inappropriate drug pairs that SNP beneficiaries were exposed to varied little from those of other MA PD beneficiaries. The majority of potentially inappropriate drug pairs for both SNP and other MA PD beneficiaries were potential drug interactions, most of which were of moderate risk. Severe and serious drug interactions accounted for 17 percent of all potential drug interactions for SNP and other MA-PD beneficiaries.

These findings led us to recommend that CMS should help SNPs and other MA-PDs provide physicians and pharmacists the information they need to prevent inappropriate drug pairs leading to adverse drug events. To do so, CMS should continue to encourage plans to fully implement prescribing programs that improve information physicians and pharmacists have about beneficiaries' medication histories. In addition, CMS should provide plans information on inappropriate drug pairs most likely to lead to severe or serious adverse drug events in the Medicare population. Finally, CMS should encourage plans to provide tools to assist physicians and pharmacists in appropriately analyzing and using the information they receive.

CMS concurred with our recommendation to help SNPs and other MA PDs provide physicians and pharmacists the information they need to prevent inappropriate drug pairs that could lead to adverse drug events. CMS noted that Part D sponsors are currently required to maintain systems to monitor drug utilization, including the use of potentially inappropriate drug pairs. In addition, CMS stated that it supports a number of efforts aimed at preventing inappropriate drug pairs that could lead to adverse drug events.


10. UTAH BUREAU OF BUSINESS AND ECONOMIC RESEARCH, UNIVERSITY OF UTAH REPORT: "Utah's Demographic Transformation," by Pamela S. Perlich (in Utah Economic and Business Review, Vol. 68, No. 3, 2008, .pdf format 11p.).


11. AUSTRALIAN GOVERMNENT DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND AGEING NEWS RELEASE: "8.2 million dollars for frail aged in South Australia" (Dec. 15, 2008, HTML and .pdf format, 2p.).


12. AUSTRALIAN GOVERNMENT INSTITUTE OF HEALTH AND WELFARE REPORT: "Arthritis and osteoporosis in Australia 2008" (December 2008, .pdf format and .zip compressed rich text format [.rtf], 160p.).


13. FRANCE INSTITUT NATIONAL D'ETUDES DEMOGRAPHQUES (INED) PERIODICAL: Population and societies (No. 450, November 2008, .pdf format, 4p.). The feature article of this issue is: "An overall decline in middle-age mortality across Western Europe: lowest death risks for Spanish women and Swedish men," by Stein Emil Vollset.


14. UK NATIONAL STATISTICS OFFICE REPORT: "Pension Trends" Update: Chapter 14, "Life Expectancy and Healthy Ageing" has been updated.


15. AARP REPORT: "AARP The Magazine Survey of Investors Ages 50+: Reactions to 30 Days of Frenzy in the Financial Sector and Stock Market," by S. Kathi Brown (November 2008, .pdf format, 16p.).


16. AMERICAN ENTERPRISE INSTITUTE PERIODICAL: Retirement Policy Outlook (No. 1, November 2008, HTML and .pdf format, 9p.). The topic of this issue is: "Personal Accounts and the Stock Market Collapse," by Andrew G. Biggs.


17. BOSTON COLLEGE CENTER FOR RETIREMENT RESEARCH STATE AND LOCAL PENSIONS BRIEF: "The Funding Status of Locally Administered Pension Plans," by Alicia H. Munnell, Jean-Pierre Aubry, and Kelly Haverstick (SLP#8, December 2008, .pdf format, 17p.).

Link to full text is at the bottom of the page.


18. CENTER FOR HEALTH CARE STRATEGIES PRESENTATION: "Medicaid Best Buys - Integrating Care for Dual Eligibles: Opportunities for States," (December 2008, .pdf format).

More information on CHC:


19. NATIONAL QUALITY FORUM REPORT: "National Voluntary Consensus Standards for End Stage Renal Disease Care," (December 2008, .pdf format, 33p.).

More information on NQF:


20. POPULATION REFERENCE BUREAU PERIODICAL: Population Bulletin (Vol. 63, No. 4, December 2008, .pdf format, 16p., with an accompanying table in Microsoft Excel format). The topic of this issue is: "Rethinking Age and Aging," by Warren Sanderson and Sergei Scherbov.


21. RAND CORPORATION TECHNICAL REPORT: "The potential cost savings of greater use of home- and hospice- based end of life care in England," by Evi Hatziandreu, Fragiskos Archontakis, and Andrew Daly (2008, .pdf format, 100p.).


22. TRI-STATE (NEW YORK, NEW JERSEY, CONNECTICUT METROPOLITAN REGION) TRANSPORTATION CAMPAIGN REPORT: "Older Pedestrians at Risk" (2008, .pdf format). Reports are available for Connecticut and New York.

Scroll to "Older Pedestrians at Risk" under "2008".

More information on TSTC:



A. "Diversity in Retirement Wealth Accumulation," by Gordon Mermin, Desmond Toohey, and Sheila R. Zedlewski (December 2008, .pdf format, 12p.).

B. "How Is the Recession Affecting Older Workers?" by Richard W. Johnson (December 2008, .pdf format, 2p.).


24. CONFEDERATION OF BRITISH INDUSTRY'S [LONDON] BRIEF: "Clearing the Pensions Fog: Achieving Transparency on Public Sector Pension Costs," (December 2008, .pdf format, 6p.).$FILE/CBI%20Public%20Sector%20Pensions%20Brief%20Dec%2008.pdf

More information on CBI:



A. "Structure of membrane-bound {alpha}-synuclein from site-directed spin labeling and computational refinement," by Christine C. Jao, Balachandra G. Hegde, Jeannie Chen, Ian S. Haworth, and Ralf Langen (Vol. 105, No. 50, December 16, 2008, p. 19666-19671).

B. "Electron tomography of early melanosomes: Implications for melanogenesis and the generation of fibrillar amyloid sheets," by Ilse Hurbain, Willie J.C. Geerts, Thomas Boudier, Sergio Marco, Arie J. Verkleij, Michael S. Marks, and Grac Raposo (Vol. 105, No. 50, December 16, 2008, p. 19726-19731).

C. "A redox-sensitive peroxiredoxin that is important for longevity has tissue- and stress-specific roles in stress resistance," by Monika Olahova, Sarah R. Taylor, Siavash Khazaipoul, Jinling Wang, Brian A. Morgan, Kunihiro Matsumoto, T. Keith Blackwell, and Elizabeth A. Veal (Vol. 105, No. 50, December 16, 2008, p. 19839-19844).


26. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF OBESITY ARTICLE ABSTRACT: "The association between sleep duration and obesity in older adults," by S.R. Patel, T. Blackwell, S. Redline, S. Ancoli-Israel, J.A. Cauley, T.A. Hillier, C.E. Lewis, E.S.Orwoll, M.L. Stefanick, B.C. Taylor, K. Yaffe, and K.L. Stone (Vol. 32, No. 12, 2008, p. 1825-1834).


27. PUBLIC LIBRARY OF SCIENCE (PLoS) ONE ARTICLE: "Glaucoma Alters the Circadian Timing System," by Elise Drouyer, Ouria Dkhissi-Benyahya, Christophe Chiquet, Elizabeth WoldeMussie, Guadalupe Ruiz, Larry A. Wheeler, Philippe Denis1, and Howard M. Cooper (PLoS ONE 3(12): e3931 doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0003931, Dec. 12, 2008, HTML, XML, and .pdf format, 11p.).



A. "Exercise on prescription for women aged 40-74 recruited through primary care: two year randomised controlled trial," by Beverley A. Lawton, Sally B. Rose, C. Raina Elley, Anthony C. Dowell, Anna Fenton, and Simon A. Moyes (BMJ 2008;337:a2509, Dec. 11, 2008).

B. "Incidence of cardiovascular disease and cancer in advanced age: prospective cohort study," by Jane A. Driver, Luc Djousse, Giancarlo Logroscino, Michael Gaziano, and Tobias Kurth (BMJ 2008;337:a2467, Dec. 9, 2008).


III. Working Papers:

29. CENTER FOR ECONOMIC STUDIES/IFO INSTITUTE FOR ECONOMIC RESEARCH (CESIFO) [MUNICH, BAVARIA, GERMANY]: "Pension Benefit Insurance and Pension Plan Portfolio Choice," by Thomas Crossley and Mario Jametti (WP 2498, December 2008, .pdf format, 12p.). Links to an abstract and full text are available at:


30. ORGANISATION FOR ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND CO-OPERATION: "Reforming the labour market in Japan to cope with increasing dualism and population ageing," by Randall S. Jones (Economics Department Working Paper 652, December 2008, .pdf format, 26p.). Links to an abstract and full text are available at:,3425,en_2649_34569_41795972_119684_1_1_37443,00.html

Click on title for link to full text.


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

31. Journal of Aging, Humanities, and the Arts (Vol. 2, Nos. 3&4, 2008). This is a special issue on "Historical Perspectives on Older Women's Struggle for 'Security' in Old Age.


32. Journals of Gerontology (B): Psychological and Social (Vols. 63B, Nos. 6, November 2008). Note: Full text of this journal is available in the ProQuest Research Library. Check your library for availability of this database and issue.


33. 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 Dec. 17, 2008:

B. Alzheimer's Disease: Literature for the week of Dec. 17, 2008:

C. Parkinson's Disease: Literature for the week of Dec. 17, 2008:

D. Prostate Cancer: Literature for the week of Dec. 17, 2008:

E. Stem Cell Research: Literature for the week of Dec. 17, 2008:

F. Ophthalmology: Literature for the week of Dec. 17, 2008:

AMEDEO Literature Guide:


V. Books:

34. Springer Books: Geropsychology and Long Term Care: A Practitioner's Guide, edited by Erlene Rosowsky, Joseph M. Casciani, and Merla Arnold (2009, 158p., ISBN: 978-0-387-72646-5). For more information see:


VI. Funding Opportunities/Employment Opportunities:


A. "Research on the Cognitive Sequelae of Parkinsons Disease (R01)" (PA-09-033, reissue of PA-07-198, Dec. 10, 2008, National Institute on Aging, in conjunction with several other agencies). For more information see:

B. "Research on the Cognitive Sequelae of Parkinsons Disease (R21)" (PA-09-034, reissue of PA-06-195, Dec. 10, 2008, National Institute on Aging, in conjunction with several other agencies). For more information see:

C. "NIH Pathway to Independence Award (K99/R00)" (PA-09-036, reissue of PA-07-297, Dec. 12, 2008, National Institute on Aging, in conjunction with several other agencies). For more information see:


36. AGEWORK.COM: "Agework.Com: AgeWork has updated its employment page with listings through Dec. 18, 2008.


VII. Conferences:

37. US NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH/NATIONAL ARCHIVE OF COMPUTERIZED DATA ON AGING (INTER-UNIVERSITY CONSORTIUM FOR POLITICAL AND SOCIAL RESEARCH CALL FOR ABSTRACTS, FOR A NIH CONFERENCE TO BE HELD IN APRIL 2009 IN BETHESDA MARYLAND: "The 2004 Wave of National Long Term Care Survey: New Research Directions." "This solicitation requests abstracts that use the recently released 2004 Wave of the National Long Term Care Survey for original research. The NLTCS is a nationally-representative sample both of the community and of institutional populations and is longitudinal in that sample person's age in once they reach 65 years of age and stay in the survey until they either die or are lost to follow-up. The National Long-Term Care Survey (NLTCS) has been collected approximately every five years, and consists of six waves (1982, 1984, 1989, 1994, 1999, and 2004).

Dr. Kenneth Manton of Duke University has led the collection effort for the NLTCS and he and his collaborators have generated a body of research that has significantly contributed to our understanding of disability and the aging life course. The 2004 wave of the NLTCS was released in February of 2007 and offers new and exciting opportunities for original research. With funding from the National Institute on Aging (NIA) the National Archive of Computerized Data on Aging (NACDA) is sponsoring a research conference that will showcase original research that used the 2004 Wave of the NLTCS.

We are requesting the submission of short abstracts no more than 500 words long that describe the goals of the proposed paper, the research design and the expected outcomes. An extended abstract that outlines the paper in more detail can be included with the submission of the short abstract though this is not a requirement only an aid in evaluating the proposed research. The use of the 2004 Wave of the NLTCS is required as part of the research design. The study can be used alone or in combination with other data collections or earlier waves of the NLTCS, but the purpose of the proposed paper must focus upon a research application of the 2004 Wave. Accepted presenters are expected to present completed analysis and results that develop new and innovative research strategies on health, disability, and the socio-economic characteristics of the elderly population using the 2004 NLTCS. As the weights for the 2004 NLTCS and its earlier waves are currently being evaluated and revised participants will be given sufficient time to incorporate the updated weights into their analysis prior to presenting their work and submitting a final version of the paper.

Abstracts are due by December 30th, 2008 and invited speakers will be contacted by January 20th, 2008. Travel support and a small honorarium will be available for authors of papers included in the program though additional papers may be considered if the authors can fund their travel though other sources. The latest version of the 2004 Wave of the NLTCS along with the earlier waves can be obtained from the National Archive of Computerized Data on Aging (NACDA) located at the University of Michigan. Abstracts should be submitted to James McNally at

as attachments in either Microsoft Word files or in pdf format.

The conference is supported by funding from the National Institute on Aging (NIA) and is expected to be held in April of 2009 at the NIH Campus in Bethesda, Maryland.

For questions and additional details please contact James W. McNally, Director of the NACDA Program on Aging at



Note: Some researchers have reported a problem with the cross-sectional weights on the 2004 NLTCS public use file. In response, the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation/Department of Health and Human Services and the National Institute on Aging/National Institutes of Health/Department of Health and Human Services are currently sponsoring an examination of the cross-sectional sample weights in the 2004 and earlier waves of the NLTCS for accuracy of weighting procedures and their implementation, and for consistency across waves. This effort will result in the construction of an accurate and consistent set of cross-sectional sample weights for all waves of NLTCS except the 1982 wave, including the development of new detailed documentation. The new weights and documentation are expected to be ready for use between October and December 2008.


38. RAND CORPORATION SUMMER INSTITUTE ON THE DEMOGRAPHY, ECONOMICS, AND EPIDEMIOLOGY OF AGING, to be held Jul. 8-9, 2009 in Santa Monica, California. For more information see:


39. INTUTE: SOCIAL SCIENCES: Intute has updated it's Sociology conferences page with a new conference:

Times of our Lives: Making Sense Of Ageing--Oxford, UK, Jul. 3, 2009).

Scroll to or "find in page" "Times of our lives" (without the quotes).


VIII. Websites of Interest:

40. US NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH NIH SENIORHEALTH UPDATE: A section on "Complementary and Alternative Medicine" has been added to NIHSeniorHealth:



41. MEDICARE.GOV UPDATES: released several updates to the site on Dec. 18, 2008. The updates are for: Nursing Home Compare; Hospital Compare; Medicare Options Compare; Medicare Prescription Drug Plan Finder; Physician and Other Healthcare Professional Directory; Helpful Contacts; and Home Health Compare."


42. KAISER FAMILY FOUNDATION STATEHEALTHFACTS.ORG UPDATE: "Stand Alone Prescription Drug Plans (PDP) Penetration, 2008" has recently been updated.

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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