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Age Wave Study Conducted by Senior Living Leader Ecumen Takes Largest Ever Look at Minnesota Baby Boomers and Their Views on Aging

Posted by Media Relations on Tuesday, February 20th, 2007 - Comments »

Senior living leader Ecumen, Minnesota’s largest non profit senior housing company, today released their Age Wave Study detailing mass findings on Minnesota baby boomers’ views on aging as it relates to public policy, housing, technology, independence and more. SHOREVIEW, MN (PRWeb) February 20th, 2007 — — Ecumen, Minnesota’s largest non-profit senior housing company, today released their Age Wave Study, the largest ever conducted of Minnesota baby boomers and their views on longevity, images of aging, technology, independence, housing and more.Among the multitude of findings are that Minnesota baby boomers (age 42-60) want more public policy, personal finance and technological options to help them maintain independence and stay in their own home even if it means raising their taxes.The Ecumen Age Wave study, conducted by Decision Resources Inc. for Ecumen, notes that 0 percent of baby boomers said they want to live in a nursing home – even if they or a spouse have a debilitating illness. The vast majority, 89%, wants to live at home, and nine out of ten baby boomers anticipate that technology will help them live longer and more independently, with over half of baby boomers saying they’ll pay $100 per month for digital health technology and five percent saying they’ll spend $500 per month. Nearly nine out of 10 (87%) support state funding for a research center to develop digital health technology to help people stay independent.”The age wave demands innovation across the board, including public policy, financial products, personal technology, housing, community design, and delivery of care,” said Kathryn Roberts, a baby boomer and CEO and President of Ecumen. “Baby boomers are telling us that they want more flexible options that provide value by helping them maintain their independence. We must revolutionize and reinvent how we approach aging. Aging isn’t partisan. Nor does it discriminate. We’re all growing older. And we’re in this together.”Nearly 9 out of 10 baby boomers (85%) say they would support a proposal that includes an increased tax credit for LTC insurance, the Vermont Model (detailed below), access to the state employees’ LTC plan, tax credits for technology purchases that help people stay independent, and a state web site that helps citizens sort through LTC insurance options.Baby boomers, most of whom expect to live beyond 80 (59%), and find long-term care insurance difficult to understand (54%), support a variety of options for paying for care if they need it, including:

  • Vermont Model (89% support): Allows a person to use Medicaid dollars to pay a relative or friend to provide care in one’s own home (currently being piloted in Vermont).
  • Payroll Tax (86% support): A payroll tax of up to $12 per month to pay for a year of guaranteed care if needed.
  • Health Insurance (85% support): Would make LTC insurance part of health insurance. Others would like it part of life insurance (76%) or disability insurance (72%).
  • State Employees Plan (85% support): Would allow access for everyone to purchase long-term care insurance (LTC) from the state employees’ plan. More than half (53%) support this option even if it required a tax increase.
  • Lifecare Annuity (80% support): In return for a single payment, a person would receive a consistent stream of income to pay for care costs if needed.
  • Tax-Free Savings (80% support): Similar to health savings accounts, a person could save up to $5,000 for care costs.
  • Long-Term Care Partnership (70%): A Minnesota plan where a person could preserve a portion of assets even if they qualify for Medicaid by purchasing a state-approved LTC insurance plan.

About The StudyThe Ecumen Age Wave Study contains results of a survey administered to 564 randomly selected Minnesotans age 42 to 60. Professional interviewers conducted the survey by phone between December 19, 2006 and January 15, 2007. The typical respondent took 32 minutes to complete the questionnaire. The results are projectable to all Minnesota baby boomers within +/- 4.2% in 95 out of 100 cases. To download this study, go to: EcumenEcumen ( is Minnesota’s largest non-profit senior housing company. The name Ecumen comes from the Greek word for home: “Oikos.” Ecumen seeks to create “home” for older adults wherever they choose to live. Ecumen, which is affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), has 4,000 team members. It was named in 2005 and 2006 as one of the “Great Places to Work” in Minnesota by The Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal.Company ContactEric SchubertEcumen651-766-433ericschubert @

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