Press Release Date
FOUNDATIONS OF FINANCIAL GERONTOLOGY
Designed to Help Social Workers, Agency Administrators and Staff, Care Managers, Lawyers and Paralegals, Therapists, and Eldercare Providers Who Work with Mature Clients
San Francisco, CA and New York, NY, April 25, 2003 - The American Society on Aging (ASA) and the American Institute of Financial Gerontology (AIFG) today announced a new program specifically designed to meet the needs of professionals in the field of aging.
The good news is that people are living longer, with today's 60-year-olds anticipating more than 25 years of additional lifespan. But with that increased lifespan comes new challenges. One of the key challenges is that people need to determine how they will provide for their financial needs for many years past traditional retirement, while simultaneously planning for elderly parents.
For professionals in the field of aging, it has become clear that the issues of health and wealth are inextricably intertwined. Aging, and the related health issues, invariably raise financial questions and issues. Thus, to be effective in their fields, these professionals are finding that they must become familiar with the financial challenges, contexts, and options their clients are facing.
Increased longevity has compounded these issues by making family caregiving commonplace. According to gerontological researcher Neal E. Cutler, Ph.D., Dean of AIFG, "Nowadays, fully 80% of 50-year olds have at least one living parent. For 60-year olds, it's 50%. Many are currently serving as caregivers for their aging parents, or will in the years ahead. Parental care -- as well as their own -- may be the biggest expense they face for the rest of their lives."
Despite the need for advice that takes into account the entire picture -- health and wealth -- very few people are professionally qualified to work across both areas of knowledge. Since 1990 the emerging field of Financial Gerontology has focused on linking applied research in aging and gerontology to financial expertise. In 2002, the American Institute of Financial Gerontology created a targeted educational program for financial service professionals who work with older individuals and families. In effect, the initial program was designed to bring gerontological education to financial professionals already working in the senior market.
As the AIFG program for financial professionals developed, it became clear that many professionals outside of the financial specialties -- such as social workers, agency administrators and staff, care managers, lawyers and paralegals, therapists, eldercare providers -- are seeking targeted education in the interface between aging and finances. According to Gloria Cavanaugh, President of ASA, "Providers of services to older adults and their families are often asked to assist in helping their clients navigate the maze of financial issues associated with long-term care and other challenging situations. For the professional working in this arena, basic financial knowledge is critical to high quality customer service."
In response to this need, AIFG and ASA are launching Foundations of Financial Gerontology, a new three-course track of seminars drawn from the AIFG professional designation curriculum and tapping the substantial experience of the AIFG faculty, all of whom are nationally-known educators. A certificate of completion will be awarded jointly by the American Institute of Financial Gerontology and the American Society on Aging.
The program will be available at the ASA Summer Series on Aging, being held in San Francisco June 23-26, and in Philadelphia July 14-17.
About AMERICAN INSTITUTE OF FINANCIAL GERONTOLOGY
The American Institute of Financial Gerontology (AIFG) provides a unique program of education, support, and certification to professionals advising older consumers and their families regarding wealth span planning. AIFG also offers a designation program in the field of financial gerontology, Certified Financial GerontologistTM. This is designed to enable financial professionals to provide expert, unbiased financial planning information, client-oriented health/wealth solutions and ethical service to older consumers and their families. For more information, please visit www.aifg.org.
About AMERICAN SOCIETY ON AGING
The American Society on Aging (ASA) is the nation's largest association of professionals working in the field of aging. ASA's mission is to increase the knowledge and strengthen the commitment of professionals working with and on behalf of older adults and their families. Its membership includes practitioners, educators, researchers, business people, service providers, policy makers, administrators, aging network staff and students from every discipline and setting - adult education, religion, medicine, long-term care, business, nursing, social work and more. Visit ASA online at www.asaging.org.
American Institute of Financial Gerontology
Jim Emerman, Senior Vice President
American Society on Aging