I’m David Brancaccio, host of the Marketplace Morning Report. I spent two years reporting on the billions seniors lose to financial scams. I’m here with Dr. Mark Lachs, an expert on the subject. Ask us anything!
This kind of exploitation can come from anywhere: anonymous fraudsters on the phone or family members and caregivers. It doesn’t just affect seniors with dementia either — people who are otherwise on the ball are susceptible. According to one study, seniors lose $36 billion a year to financial fraud.
For this series, we travelled all over the country gathering stories from victims and their families. We also heard from experts who say it’s time to have a national conversation about financial abuse and the elderly.
One of those experts is Dr. Mark Lachs, who’s joining me for this AMA ( u/DrMarkLachs). He’s is Professor of Medicine and Co-Chief of the Division of Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine at NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Medical College.
Mark’s one of the most highly-respected physician scientists in the field of elder abuse. He’s testified before the Senate Committee on Aging, spoken at the White House and served as a consultant to the World Health Organization. He recently founded Elderabuse.org, the first nationwide charity and grant-making organization dedicated to fighting elder abuse.
He also wrote the book, “Treat Me, Not My Age,” which confronted “medical ageism” and how older patients’ concerns are often dismissed or overtreated based on their age.
We’re here to answer your questions about aging, scams, how to talk with your loved ones about their money, or anything else you want to know. (We can also talk about our hobbies: Mark likes restoring antique electronics and ham radio. I launch high-powered "model" rockets.)