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Older, but Hardly Alone

Scott LaFee on

In 2019, there were roughly 54 million Americans aged 65 and older. By 2050, there will be nearly 86 million, a population increase of nearly 60%. The future, according to the latest Senior Report by United Health Foundation, looks mixed.

On the plus side, geriatric services and providers are increasing, as are vaccination and exercise rates. On the negative side, drug-related deaths and frequency of mental distress are rising.

Earlier Screenings for Colorectal Cancer

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force is now recommending that people start getting screened for colorectal cancer at age 45, five years sooner than the previous recommendation of 50. Although the disease kills more than 50,000 people in the U.S., with case numbers rising in younger adults, early screening can help make it among the most preventable cancers.

Body of Knowledge

Like bats, humans possess the ability to echolocate, which is the ability to use sound signals to determine the space and objects around them. The sense is much weaker in people, of course, but it has been discovered that with training, a blind human can learn to locate a pole six inches in diameter at a distance of at least three feet through echolocation.

 

Get Me That, Stat!

Hepatitis A and C infections in the U.S. are rising, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Between 2015 and 2019, hepatitis A infections rose more than 1,300% and 63% for hepatitis C. Injection drug use was a major reason for both spikes.

Counts

Four million: The number of people who would gain health insurance if U.S. states that have yet to expand Medicaid did so under President Joe Biden's American Rescue Plan

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