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PNS Daily Newscast - February 20, 2018 


A day in court for the alleged Florida school shooter. Also on our nationwide rundown: a 24-hour hotline "reignites" to support immigrants; and a new study finds prescription drugs in the Hudson River, from Troy all the way to New York City.

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An Aging Nation: Ohio Communities Address Longevity

One in four people will be age 65 or older by the year 2050. (Vee/Flickr)
One in four people will be age 65 or older by the year 2050. (Vee/Flickr)
February 5, 2018

COLUMBUS, Ohio – We're living in an aging nation, and a growing number of Ohio cities are stepping up to address the needs of older populations.

According to Census Bureau data, every day in the United States nearly 10,000 people turn 65, and the percentage of people age 65 and older will double over the next several decades.

The board chair of AARP, Joan Ruff, says this longevity is a gift and a challenge for the U.S. and other countries.

"Its a global phenomenon,” she states. “And by 2050 we're going to have one in four people in the whole planet who are going to be over 65, and we're going to be a super-aged planet. And so now is the time to look at it. We can't sleep through this. We have to be proactive."

Creating age-friendly places to live is among the steps needed that can help ensure the welfare of older Americans, she says.

Cleveland, Columbus, Delaware and Oxford are among the cities in Ohio that have joined the AARP Network of Age-Friendly Communities, and Akron and Cincinnati are currently in the process of joining.

These communities have made a pledge to focus on improvements that can help people as they age in areas such as housing, caregiving, volunteering and social inclusion.

And Ruff says that includes assessing safety, security, access and mobility.

"What is your social infrastructure, what is your physical infrastructure and what do you need to do today to make sure that your community is viable and at the leading edge for tomorrow?" she stresses.

Ruff notes livable communities include open spaces, transportation and other elements that benefit every generation.

"If I make it so that you can get around and you may be 80 years old, it also makes it easier for someone who is 25 and pushing a stroller,” she points out. “It makes it easier to walk together as a family. It makes it easier for kids on bicycles to get around."

Ruff adds there are also health care, technology, and workforce challenges that state and national leaders need to examine to help older Americans live and thrive as they age.

U.S. News and World Report ranks Ohio as 25th among states on its list, Best Places to Age.


Mary Kuhlman, Public News Service - OH