Current Awareness in Aging Research (CAAR) Report #84--May 17, 2001

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. CENSUS BUREAU: The US Census Bureau has released demographic profile data for the United States, from the 2000 Census (.pdf, Excel, and compressed .zip ASCII format). Included are 5 year age group data for the states available at this time. Demographic data is available at the state, county, place, Metro area, American Indian Area, and Congressional District level within available states.

Press release that links to data:

Presently available data files:

2. HRS: The University of Michigan Institute for Social Research Health and Retirement Study/Asset and Health Dynamics Among the Oldest Old (HRS/AHEAD) website has added the following data announcements between May 10, and May 16, 2001.

A. HRS 1998 Exit Early Data Release (Version 1.0) (May 10, 2001).

B. HRS 1998 Exit Imputation Data (Version 1.0) Release (May 11, 2001).

C. HRS 1996 Final Core Data Release (v.3) (May 15, 2001).

D. New Unified, Automatic User Registration System (May 15, 2001).

E. AHEAD 1995 Exit Early Release Supplement (May 16, 2001).

All announcements can be accessed from:


II. Reports and articles:

3. _FT_ PENSION FUND INVESTMENT ARTICLES: The May 17, 2001 issue of _Financial Times_ carries a special Survey section: "Pension Fund Investment". Included are articles on the UK, US, Japan, and Europe, among others. Of particular interest may be the overview article "Entering the era of trillion dollar managers".

4. GAO REPORT: "Flu Vaccine: Supply Problems Heighten Need to Ensure Access for High-Risk People" (US General Accounting Office GAO 01-624, May 2001, .pdf format, 32p.).

Note: This is a temporary address. GAO reports can always be found at:

Search on title or report number.

5. _JAMA_ NEWS AND ANALYSIS: "Aging Patients Are Advised "Stay Active to Stay Alert," by Mike Mitka (_Journal of the American Medical Association_ News and Analysis, Vol. 285, No. 19, May 16, 2001, HTML and .pdf format, p. 2437-2438).

6. _LANCET_ NEWS: Note: _Lancet_ requires free registration before providing content.

A. "New US guidelines for Alzheimer's disease released," by Marilynn Larkin (_Lancet_ Science and Medicine News, Vol. 357, No. 9267, May 12, 2001, HTML and .pdf format, p. 1505).



B. "US demographers propose hope for Medicare," by Laura Newman (_Lancet_ Policy and People News, Vol. 357, No. 9267, May 12, 2001, HTML and .pdf format, p. 1512).



7. MEDSCAPE ARTICLES: Note: Medscape requires free registration before providing articles.

A. "The Geriatric Patient: Equal Benefit From Equal Treatment," by Lodovico Balducci (_Cancer Control: Journal of the Moffitt Cancer Center_, Vol. 8, No. 2 supplement, March/April 2001, p. 1-25).


B. "Community Cancer Programs and Hospice Services" (_Oncology Issues_, Vol. 16, No. 2, March/April 2001, p. 24-25).



A. "Growing old in a good home: Innovative ways for seniors to get care without going to a nursing home," by Joseph P. Shapiro (_US News and World Report_, May 21, 2001). Note: This article links to three sidebars ("Assisted living, "Continuing care communities," and "Living at home").

B. "The assisted-living dilemma: Residents and regulators strain to balance freedom with protection," by Joseph P. Shapiro (_US News and World Report_, May 21, 2001).

C. "Promises: A welcome withdrawn," by Joseph P. Shapiro (_US News and World Report_, May 21, 2001).

9. _FORBES_ ARTICLE: "Lawyer Take All: Ever wonder what your attorney might do with your estate once you're not around to keep an eye out? Crookedness and incompetence are chillingly widespread. And your loved ones may end up losers," by Brigid McMenamin (_Forbes_, May 28, 2001). Note: This article is accompanied by a sidebar: "Dealing With an Estate Lawyer," linked to at the bottom of the first page of the article.

10. AARP PRIME TIME RADIO: Note: These are audio transcripts and listeners will need the RealPlayer plug-in or helper application to hear them.

A. Apr. 3, 2001: "The Wisdom of Menopause." "The vast numbers of boomer women approaching menopause are changing the traditional American approach to the change of life leaving behind the past silence and embarrassment and seeking new answers. Dr. Christiane Northrup is one great source of help, and a leader in the revolution of thinking about menopause. She joins host Mike Cuthbert to talk about her book: _The Wisdom of Menopause: Creating Physical and Emotional Health and Healing During the Change_". Running time: 30 minutes, 9 seconds.

B. Apr. 10, 2001: "Hope Meadows." "Wes Smith is a journalist who has followed the development of a remarkable community called "Hope Meadows" since its inception. It's a place where everyone is involved in nurturing and helping troubled children and where older people play a crucial role. Smith describes this unique and wonderful community in this conversation with Mike Cuthbert." Running time: 23 minutes, 56 seconds.

C. Apr. 17, 2001: "Caring Conversation." "Americans are still finding it pretty difficult to talk with their loved ones about end of life issues. And with the advances in medicine and the variety of options, it's increasingly important to know people's preferences. Chris Cruzan White, whose family's legal battle over terminating the life of her comatose sister Nancy launched a national debate, and Myra Christopher, director of the Midwest Bioethics Center, discuss talking about and dealing with end of life issues." Running time: 30 minutes, 9 seconds.

All programs can be accessed from:


III. Working Papers:

11. MAX PLANCK INSTITUTE FOR DEMOGRAPHIC RESEARCH: "A Case-only Approach for Assessing Gene-sex Interaction in Human Longevity," by Qihua Tan, Anatoli I. Yashin, Else M. Bladbjerg, Moniek P.M. de Maat, Karen Andersen-Ranberg, Bernard Jeune, Kaare Christensen, and James W. Vaupel (MIPDR WP 2001-012, May 2001, .pdf format, 21p.).

As one aspect of the complex feature of longevity, gene-sex interaction plays an important role in influencing human life span. With advances in molecular genetics, more studies aimed at assessing gene-sex interaction are expected. New and valid statistical methods are needed. In this paper, we introduce a nontraditional approach, the case-only design, which was originally proposed for assessing gene and disease associations, to detect gene-sex interaction in human longevity. Applications of this method to data collected from centenarian studies show that it can produce consistent results as compared with results obtained from case-control and other approaches. Important features of the application in human longevity studies are highlighted and discussed. Since centenarians constitute a special population representing successful ageing, the easily applicable case-only approach will be an important tool for screening potential major genes that contribute to human longevity.

12. NBER: "The Impact of Technological Change on Older Workers: Evidence from Data on Computer Use," by Leora Friedberg (National Bureau of Economic Research W8297, May 2001, .pdf format, 38p.).


New technologies like computers alter skill requirements. This paper explores two related effects of computers on older workers, who use computers less. The evolution of computer use in the Current Population Survey suggests that impending retirement reduces the incentive of older workers to acquire new skills. The Health and Retirement Study shows, further, that computer users retire later than non-users. This may arise because computer users choose to retire later and also because workers planning later retirement choose to acquire computer skills. Instrumental variables estimates suggest that computer use directly lowers the probability of retirement.

Click on "PDF" or submit your email address at the bottom of the abstract for full text.

13. LIS: "Income Maintenance in Old Age: What Can be Learned from Cross-National Comparisons," by Timothy M. Smeeding with assistance from James Williamson (Luxembourg Income Study Working Paper No. 263, May 2001, .pdf format, 49p.).


The purpose of this paper is to review the recent evidence on the antipoverty effectiveness and other characteristics of income maintenance systems for the elderly in the rich nations of the world. As we move toward Social Security reform in the United States, we do so knowing that a comparatively high fraction of our older population experience income poverty compared to their counterparts in other nations. Strategies to reduce the future Social Security deficit need to take into account the way that program changes affect poverty and benefit adequacy as well as fiscal soundness. Other nations offer approaches which would help us to achieve lower poverty rates while also providing fiscally responsible solutions to the future public costs of an aging society through reforms to the Social Security system.


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

14. American Journal of Public Health (Vol. 91, No. 4, April 2001).

Click on "Table of Contents" and then "April 2001" for tables of contents. Note: This journal is available in full electronic text in the ProQuest Research Library and EBSCO Academic Search Elite Database. Check your library for the availability of these databases and this issue.

15. The Gerontologist (Vol. 41, No. 3, June 2001). Note: This journal is available in full electronic text in the ProQuest Research Library. Check your library for the availability of this database and this issue.

16. Journal of Aging and Health (Vol. 13, No. 2, May 2001) is available in full electronic text in the ProQuest Research Library. Check your library for the availability of this database.

17. Journal of Gerontology (A): Biological Sciences (Vol. 56A, No. 6, June 2001). Note: This journal is available in full electronic text in the ProQuest Research Library. Check your library for the availability of this database and this issue.

18. Journal of Gerontology (A): Medical Sciences (Vol. 56A, No. 6, June 2001). Note: This journal is available in full electronic text in the ProQuest Research Library. Check your library for the availability of this database and this issue.

19. CARL Uncover Journal Tables of Contents. Follow the instructions below to access tables of contents. CARL Uncover provides fee based document delivery services for selected journals.

A. Point your browser to:

B. click on "Search Uncover"
C. click on "Search Uncover Now"
D. Type the Journal Name in the search box and click the radio button "Journal Title Browse"
E. click on the journal name
F. click on "journal issues"
G. click on the issues identified below

Journal of Aging and Physical Activity (Vol. 9, No. 2, April 2001).

Population Studies (Vol. 55, No. 1, March 2001).

Social Work (Vol. 46, No. 2, April, 2001). Note: This journal is available in full electronic text in the ProQuest Research Library. Check your library for the availability of this database and this issue.


V. Conferences:

20. AOA: "The US Administration on Aging (AoA) and the aging network are energized about the new National Family Caregiver Support Program (NFCSP). The conference will provide participants with comprehensive and detailed information on the key components of this new program. The conference offers a unique in depth opportunity for the exchange of views and ideas on how the aging network is implementing the NFCSP and other caregiver programs. In addition, each participant will receive important materials to help them enhance their NFCSP programs.... The conference will be geared to the needs of State Units on Aging, Area Agencies on Aging, Tribal Organizations and service providers, and these agencies will be given priority in registration." For more information see:

Preliminary agenda:


VI. Legislation Information Updates:


Hearing testimony of Norm Thompson, AoA Acting Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary:

22. US SENATE SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON AGING: "Family Caregiving and the Older Americans Act: Caring for the Caregiver," a hearing held May 17, 2001.

Hearing testimony:


VII. Websites of Interest:

23. MEDSCAPE RESOURCE CENTER UPDATE: Note: Medscape requires free registration before providing articles: Geriatric Care, a Medscape website with links to articles, news, conference coverage, journal scans, treatment updates, and Medline abstracts, among other features, has been updated through May 11, 2001.


24. SSA FOR WOMEN: The US Social Security Administration has launched this website. "The site provides basic Social Security program information on retirement, survivors, disability and Supplemental Security Income benefits pertinent to women."

Press release that links to site:


Jack Solock
Data Librarian--Center for Demography and Ecology and Center for Demography of Health and Aging
4470 Social Science
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Madison, WI 53706