Statement by James Firman, NCOA President & CEO
“Caring for an aging loved one is a task that virtually every American family faces. Right now, more than 65 million family caregivers assist seniors and individuals with disabilities across their lifespan to live at home, participate in the community, and age with dignity and independence. These caregivers are the backbone of the American long-term care system.
“The number of Americans needing long-term care is projected to more than double in the coming decades as our population ages. The annual economic value of family caregiving is estimated at more than $450 billion. However, there is little support for family caregivers— leaving them at risk for social, health, and economic consequences. American businesses also face significant costs associated with lost productivity and increased health claims when caregivers are not supported. Yet, there is little discussion about these issues publicly.
“It is time for us to come together, across political parties, across multiple sectors, and across aging and disability communities to value the contributions of family caregivers and do more to support them. NCOA applauds the members of Congress who have stepped up and demonstrated leadership in formation of this bipartisan, bicameral caucus.
“NCOA is a respected national leader and trusted partner to help people aged 60+ meet the challenges of aging. Its mission is to improve the lives of millions of older adults, especially those who are struggling. NCOA partners with the University of Illinois at Chicago, the Veterans Administration, and other aging and disability organizations to advance research, promising and evidence-based practices, and policy to support family caregivers.”
The National Council on Aging (NCOA) is a respected national leader and trusted partner to help people aged 60+ meet the challenges of aging. Our mission is to improve the lives of millions of older adults, especially those who are struggling. Through innovative community programs and services, online help, and advocacy, NCOA is partnering with nonprofit organizations, government, and business to improve the health and economic security of 10 million older adults by 2020. Learn more at ncoa.org and @NCOAging.