Aging and Retirement- Prospects, Planning, and Policy. Edited by Neil G. McCluskey and Edgar F. Borgatta. Beverly Hills, CA, Sage Publications, 1981.
This book attempts to add some perspective to the areas of aging and retirement by presenting a wide spectrum of topics that relate to both subjects.
The first of the three sections of the book gives a prospective view of the retirement years. It includes the broad demographic and economic factors that may influence older individuals as they leave the labor market, the significant findings of the Social Security Administration's retirement history study, the report of the National Committee on Concerns of Older Americans, and a demographic profile of the aging veteran population. In addition, the Veteran's Administration compensation and pension programs, health service resources, and costs are presented. This presentation raises some controversial issues regarding the maintenance of the veterans' programs in their present form.
The second, major section of the text includes many outstanding chapters on a variety of aging/ retirement-related topics. Some topics are retirement planning, a quality-of-life framework, health care during the retirement years, aging and disability, psychological well-being in retirement, and the family and retirement.
The third and final section of the book takes a critical look at current public policies governing retirement and personnel. The final chapters analyze these retirement policies and programs and suggest that they will undergo significant changes in the near future.
Even though this book is not written expressly for health care professionals, it does present issues that affect the present generation of older adults and that ultimately will change the focus of health care in this country. This book gives a very understandable explanation of the history, present status, and future directions of retirement practices and policies. The chapters that emphasize the relationships between retirement and health care, the demographics of aging and health status, the aging veteran, and aging disability may be especially meaningful and thought provoking for the health care professional.
This text is well-organized, readable, and well-documented. It offers many suggestions for research and attempts to provide a concise overview of the rather complex topics of aging and retirement as well as some insight into the future evolution of retirement prospects, planning, and policy. The contents of this text would be especially meaningful for those nurses who deal with older clients in the community setting.