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DENVER BUSINESS JOURNAL - Two former HUD secretaries are leading a Bipartisan Policy Center task force that will look at how meeting the housing needs of senior citizens can also reduce health care costs.
Henry Cisneros led the Department of Housing and Urban Development during former President Bill Clinton's administration. Mel Martinez was HUD secretary during former President George W. Bush's administration. Cisneros is a Democrat, and Martinez is a Republican, but both agree on the need to help more senior citizens do what they would prefer to do: age in place, in their own homes.
The problem is that many of their homes aren't suitable for independent living by elderly Americans. Plus, many of their neighborhoods don't offer adequate transportation options for senior citizens who no longer drive.
Retrofitting homes with senior-friendly features such as grab bars in bathrooms, wider doors to accommodate wheelchairs and lower kitchen cabinets would help many older Americans remain in their homes. Some homes are no longer suitable for people when they get old, so home builders need to be encouraged to build affordable housing built with senior citizens in mind, Cisneros said.
Homes tailored to senior citizens would cut health care costs by reducing the number of falls, the number one cause of injuries for people who are 65 or older.
Read the full report in the Denver Business Journal: http://bit.ly/1FdYaQ5.
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