With people living longer than ever before, experts agree it's important for society to consider how senior citizens will get long-term care, pay for healthcare and address quality of life issues. For insight on growing old in America today, Dr. Oz talks to Dr. Robert Butler, widely considered to be one of the fathers of the studies of longevity and geriatrics in the United States.
Dr. Butler was the first director of the National Institute on Aging and coined the term "ageism," which helped shed light on the prejudice toward elderly Americans as well as the discrimination facing individuals solely on the basis of their age. His 1975 Pulitzer Prize-winning book, Why Survive? Being Old in America, exposed the neglect of many of the country's elderly people and the need for public policy reform.
Dr. Butler talks to Dr. Oz about some of the progress made since the book's publication, including the creation of the National Institute on Aging and increased efforts to understand and treat illnesses such as Alzheimer's disease. He also discusses the challenges still facing aging Americans, including poverty and a lack of adequate institutional and long-term care.
Published on August 14, 2007