The Administration for Community Living’s annual report for 2018 is out and is full of valuable information for any healthcare provider. Here is a quick list of some of the highlights of this incredibly detailed demographics report.
- Over the past 10 years, the population age 65 and over increased from 37.8 million in 2007 to 50.9 million in 2017 (a 34% increase) and is projected to reach 94.7 million in 2060.
- Between 2007 and 2017 the population age 60 and over increased 35% from 52.5 million to 70.8 million.
- Racial and ethnic minority populations have increased from 7.2 million in 2007 (19% of the older adult population) to 11.8 million in 2017 (23% of older adults) and are projected to increase to 27.7 million in 2040 (34% of older adults).
- The number of Americans age 45-64 – who will reach age 65 over the next two decades – increased by 9% between 2007 and 2017.
- More than one in every seven, or 15.6%, of the population is an older American.
- Persons reaching age 65 have an average life expectancy of an additional 19.5 years (20.6 years for females and 18.1 years for males).
- Older women outnumber older men at 28.3 million older women to 22.6 million older men.
- In 2017, 23% of persons age 65 and over were members of racial or ethnic minority populations–9% were African-Americans (not Hispanic), 4% were Asian (not Hispanic), 0.5% were American Indian and Alaska Native (not Hispanic), 0.1% were Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander (not Hispanic), and 0.8% of persons 65 and older identified themselves as being of two or more races. Persons of Hispanic origin (who may be of any race) represented 8% of the older population.
- A larger percentage of older men are married as compared with older women—70% of men, 46% of women. In 2018, 32% older women were widows.
- About 28% (14.3 million) of older persons lived alone (9.5 million women, 4.8 million men).
- Among women age 75 and over, 44% lived alone.
- The median income of older persons in 2017 was $32,654 for males and $19,180 for females. The real median income (after adjusting for inflation) of all households headed by older people increased by 1.1% (which was not statistically significant) between 2016 and 2017. Households containing families headed by persons age 65 and over reported a median income in 2017 of $61,946.
- In 2017, 4,681,000 older adults (9.2%) were below the poverty level. This poverty rate is not statistically different from the poverty rate in 2016 (9.3%). In 2011, the U.S. Census Bureau released a new Supplemental Poverty Measure (SPM) which takes into account regional variations in living costs, noncash benefits received, and non-discretionary expenditures but does not replace the official poverty measure. In 2017, the SPM showed a poverty level for persons age 65 and over of 14.1% (almost 5 percentage points higher than the official rate of 9.2%). This increase is mainly due to including medical out-of-pocket expenses in the poverty calculations.
- The need for caregiving increases with age. In January-June 2018, the percentage of older adults age 85 and over needing help with personal care (20%) was more than twice the percentage for adults ages 75– 84 (9%) and five times the percentage for adults ages 65–74 (4%).
- Among adults age 75 and over, 42% report the television is their first source of emergency information as compared with 31% for the total population. The percentage of older adults receiving information from the internet (9%) is much lower than for the total population (31%).
Source: “Profile of Older Americans”