Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Retirement at 85? Anti-Aging Treatments Might Lead to Demographic Problems

A panel of experts discussed the future of the human life span at a news briefing at the 2006 American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Annual Meeting and, among other things, examined the potential demographic and economic effects which such life-extension measures could have. Assuming anti-aging therapies could increase life expectancy in the near future, Stanford biologist Dr. Shripad Tuljapurkar created a model examining the demographic and economic effects. "Given a 20-year increase in life expectancy between 2010 and 2030 due to anti-aging therapy--which the panel scientists consider a “moderate” estimate--the model predicts that there will be twice as many American retirees relative to working people. Thus, the dependency ratio would double, as would the cost of Social Security and Medicare. In order to compensate, Tuljapurkar estimates, the retirement age would have to climb to 85."

Source: News Archive American Association for the Advancement of Science (February 18, 2006)

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