Spotify Cares About Your Hearing

Spotify, a popular music streaming app, made news once again when it released its plan to become an even more inclusive streaming service, now including podcasts and videos. Though not as well publicized, Spotify is teaming up with the Berklee College of Music to discuss the potentially detrimental effects of young music-listeners’ habits.  With 60 million listeners, Spotify is taking strides to prevent hearing loss for their listeners.

“Just the Right Volume”

At a forum titled “Just the Right Volume: An Essential Conversation About Hearing,” the two organizations came together to discuss what there is to do about the growing epidemic of hearing loss among young adults. With the help of Berklee students, Spotify recorded public service announcements (PSA) to air in their commercial slots informing listeners about proper listening volumes. The idea is that when an issue is brought to your attention continuously, you may be more likely to do something about it. Starting on May 19, Spotify started airing these PSAs for non-paying users. Perhaps next time you use this popular app to stream music, you will remember to do so at the proper volume!

America vs. Japan: Battle for Elder Care

The future can be scary for anyone, and the thought of preparing for the future can be even scarier. With the increasing cost of healthcare and the no longer definite aid of Medicare for future retirees, it is no wonder America has turned the spotlight to their baby boomer generation.

Growth of Baby Boomers

In a study completed by the American Council of Life Insurers, it is estimated that by the time the majority of this generation retires from the workforce in 2030, the percentage of Americans over the age of 65 will be double what it is now. With nearly 16 percent of American households participating in the Medicare program already, there is growing concern over whether or not there will be enough funding for Medicare program and who will take care of the baby boomers.

These may seem like staggering statistics, but we should turn our eyes elsewhere around the world to see that we are in good company.

Japan’s Elderly Population on the Rise

Japan, with a population of roughly 127 million people, registers one in four of their residents as age 65 or older. What is more alarming about Japan is that while their population decreases, their percentage of elderly population continues to rise. In 40 years, 40 percent of their population will be over the age of 65. So how do they care for their elderly?

While many of the younger generation feel it is their responsibility to take on the care of their elders, others opt for long-term hospitalization. This caused an issue in Japan issue similar to that of America, which in turn lead them to an even more similar solution –long-term care insurance. Taxation and mandatory contributions allow for greater access to services and a decrease of personal cost. Sound similar to Medicare? Unfortunately it seems that the growing elderly population is quickly using up all the given resources so Japan, similarly to America, needs to come up with a new answer.

By: Diana Michel

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