The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

February 25, 2014

Editorial: New Enid center for active aging worth a discussion


Enid News and Eagle

ENID, Okla. — Every day, we are all getting older. And it’s not always fun to talk about that subject.

The world population over 65 is expected to triple by mid-century to 1.5 billion, according to the Pew Research Center’s Global Attitudes Project. Still, public concern in America is lagging compared to other parts of the world.

Those aged 65 and older comprise the fastest growing demographic in the United States. In Garfield County, the population over the age of 65 is higher than state and national averages.

Due to aging and inflation, U.S. health care costs are expected to double to nearly 15 percent of the gross domestic product, according to USA Today. That’s a serious concern in the nation and region.

Locally, a recent discussion was held on the possibility of forming an active aging center in Enid. The roundtable event was at the prior location of the Enid Senior Citizens’ Center.

Considering that Enid is an economic, medical and social hub for northwest Oklahoma, this is a good idea worth exploring.

Enid also is desirable as a retirement destination, offering two strong hospitals and related health care specialists, dining and shopping options, four seasons of weather and safe streets and neighborhoods.

While Enid offers a number of senior-oriented activities and programs, the closing of the Enid Senior Center recently has left some gaps.

It’s time for our community to contemplate aging subjects ranging from health and education to socializing and other aspects. After all, we’re not getting any younger.