The Politics of Nursing: Aging

Sydnee Logan
By Sydnee Logan  | 
The Politics of Nursing: Aging

Why do poor people age faster?

That’s the central research question for Assistant Professor Laura Samuel, PhD, CRNP. She shared her research at Hopkins on the Hill on June 12, 2019.


Here are the facts:

  • There is a 10- to 15-year disparity in life expectancy between people whose income is in the top one percent compared to people in the bottom one percent
  • This is partly due to financial strain, or difficulty meeting daily needs

Dr. Samuel’s research investigates the links between income, financial strain, aging, and mortality. At Hopkins on the Hill she communicated one of her key findings—that financial strain harms health and costs taxpayers money.

She is also evaluating the health impact of programs that reduce financial strain; research she conducted with Dr. Sarah Szanton found that people who use Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits are less likely to have costly hospitalizations. SNAP is the largest federal nutrition assistance program; it provides benefits to eligible low-income individuals and families.

Dr. Laura Samuel’s research was funded by the National Institute on Aging, and Hopkins on the Hill is a biennial showcase of the range, value, and impact of federally funded research and programming across Johns Hopkins University. Dr. Kamila Alexander represented the School of Nursing at the inaugural Hopkins on the Hill in 2017. Showing the work we collectively do—from research on nutrition and aging to space exploration and artificial intelligence—helps Johns Hopkins advocate for a strong research environment and continued investment in groundbreaking innovation.

As we celebrate 130 years of Johns Hopkins Nursing, we also recognize the long tradition of Johns Hopkins nurses who saw need through clinical practice and became advocates for underserved communities. Notably Dr. Jacquelyn Campbell created the Danger Assessment after working with women who experienced domestic violence, and has been a tireless advocate before congress and the media. And alum Lauren Underwood recently became the youngest black woman ever elected to the House of Representatives.

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Sydnee Logan is the Social Media and Digital Content Coordinator for Johns Hopkins School of Nursing. She shares what’s going on here with the world.

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