Wider Opportunities for Women (WOW) and the Gerontology Institute at the University of Massachusetts Boston created the Elder Economic Security Initiative (EESI), a measure of income adequacy that attempts to reflect the amount of income older adults need to meet basic expenses.  Currently, the Elder Economic Security Index is available for California, Illinois, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin on WOW’s website.

In Pennsylvania, Pathways PA partnered with CARIE, the United Way of Southeastern PA and others to develop the EESI Index for PA. PA’s Index demonstrates that while one out of four older Pennsylvanians rely solely on Social Security, the average Social Security payment in Pennsylvania is not enough to support their basic needs. Housing costs consume between 19 to 45% of older adults monthly expenses. If an older Pennsylvanian needs home and community-based long term care, the cost can double and even triple their monthly expenses. The Index provides typical monthly expenses for an older adult as well as a couple specific to every county in Pennsylvania and includes a separate chart for home and community-based long term care costs by county.

Here is PA EESI information:
Elder Economic Security Standard Index for Pennsylvania (full report)
Elders Living on the Edge: When Incomes Fall Short in Retirement (policy brief)
PA EESI and the Family Caregiver Support Program (fact sheet)
PA EESI for Advocates (fact sheet)
At A Glance: Pennsylvania’s Women in Retirement– (Added 5/09)