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Letters to the Editor

Letter: Medical costs

  • Author: Karin Woofter
    | Opinion
  • Updated: January 24
  • Published January 24

I’m puzzled why David Howell, the Alaska demographer who compiled the annual report showing the decline of population in Alaska, said “… the most surprising thing to him is a surge in emigration (outmigration) among the baby boomer generation, those between 56 and 74 years old in 2020.”  

I am a baby boomer who just moved here two years ago this month from Florida. The beauty here takes my breath away, and the people are so kind and friendly. Those are big reasons to stay put.

But I have a theory — that I personally experienced — why older folks are moving away. It took me almost two years to finally find a doctor to take Medicare. Dental costs for a routine teeth cleaning are nearly twice what I paid for back in Tampa. I heard some people on Medicare travel to Seattle, and even out of the country, for their medical care.  

I am glad Mr. Howell pointed to the emigration of boomers. Maybe I am not alone in my clarion call to rein in sky-high medical costs, as boomers and their holdings — read: money — will continue to leave if they can’t get the medical and dental care they need here.

— Karin Woofter


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