(OPINION) Aging Americans Face Bleak Futures Unless We Let New Immigrants Help

There are more than 11 million job openings and only 6 million unemployed workers in the United States, and employers have struggled for more than a year to hire enough people to fill their ranks.

This shortage is having a great impact on our healthcare system. In particular, America’s aging population is exploding and the unmet demand for the caregivers elderly citizens rely on is becoming increasingly pronounced in rural areas and smaller cities and towns where nearly half of all Americans live. The Association of American Colleges (AAMC) predicts a shortfall of as many as 124,000 physicians by 2034, with geriatricians facing a particularly severe shortage. According to a 2021 AAMC report, just 6,124 physicians nationwide specialize in caring for older adults. Per the U.S. Census, “By 2060, nearly one in four Americans will be 65 years and older, the number of 85-plus will triple, and the country will add a half million centenarians.”

Without more immigrants, aging Americans face a bleak future for our ability to age with dignity. And it’s not just our elderly population. We need more immigrants in every aspect of healthcare and the rest of our economy for our country to thrive….

Kristie De Pena & Robert Leonard, Time Magazine, September 6, 2023
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