Michigan’s elderly support services buckle as residents age

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(File Photo/Federated Media)

DETROIT (AP) — Aging care experts are warning that Michigan’s safety net services for elderly populations are becoming strained as more residents live longer.

The Detroit News ‘ analysis of recently released U.S. Census Bureau data shows that Michigan’s overall population has a median age of nearly 40 years. In 21 of the state’s counties, the median age of residents is over 50 years.

Area Agency on Aging of Northwestern Michigan serves some of those counties.

The Traverse City-based nonprofit’s executive director, Heidi Gustine, cautions that the state is about to reach a tipping point, as more baby boomers reach retirement age.

Gustine says safety net systems are already buckling as demand for home health care increases with fewer workers to fill the jobs.

Aging organizations also need more funding and affordable senior housing.

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