Aging and Special Needs Statistics

Population

  • In 2014, 46 million people age 65 and over lived in the United States, accounting for 15 percent of the total population. The older population in 2030 is projected to be more than twice as large as in 2000, growing from 35 million to 74 million and representing 21 percent of the total U.S. population. (Administration on Aging, A Profile of Older Americans: 2016)

  • In 2010, there were 9.2 million veterans age 65 and over in the United States. This number is expected to drop to 8.9 million by 2025, an expected decrease of about 2.7 percent. (Administration on Aging, A Profile of Older Americans: 2016)

Health Status

  • In 2011, among people ages 65–74, men were more likely to have dementia than women, but among adults age 85 and over, women were more likely to have dementia than men. (Administration on Aging, A Profile of Older Americans: 2016)

  • In 2014, 22 percent of the population age 65 and over reported having a disability as defined by limitations in vision, hearing, mobility, communication, cognition, and self-care. Women were more likely to report any disability than men (24 percent versus 19 percent). (Administration on Aging, A Profile of Older Americans: 2016)

Health Care

  • While the number of hospital stays remained fairly stable from 1992 to 2013, the average length of stay in the hospital decreased steadily over time. In 1992, the average length of stay in the hospital for a Medicare beneficiary was 8.4 days; by 2013 the average length of stay had decreased to 5.3 day. (Administration on Aging, A Profile of Older Americans: 2016)

  • Enrollment in Medicare Advantage (MA)/Capitated Payment Plans has grown rapidly in recent years. In 2005, 16 percent of Medicare beneficiaries age 65 and over were enrolled in an MA plan, compared with 34 percent in 2013. (Administration on Aging, A Profile of Older Americans: 2016)

  • From 1977 to 2013, the percentage of household income that people age 65 and over allocated to out-of-pocket spending for health care services
    increased among those in the poor/near poor income category from 12 percent to 17 percent. (Administration on Aging, A Profile of Older Americans: 2016)

  • In 2014, about 1.2 million people age 65 and over were residents of nursing homes. Nearly 780,000 people of that age lived in residential care communities such as assisted living facilities. In both settings, people age 85 and over were the largest age group among residents. (Administration on Aging, A Profile of Older Americans: 2016)

Other Social/Demographic Trends

  • In 1966, 29 percent of people age 65 and over lived below the poverty threshold. By 2014, the proportion of the older population living in poverty had decreased dramatically to 10 percent. (Administration on Aging, A Profile of Older Americans: 2016)

  • For persons age 65 and over, two-thirds of income in 2014 was from retirement benefits including Social Security which accounted for about half of average total family income. (Administration on Aging, A Profile of Older Americans: 2016)

  • While housing cost burden has generally increased over time, between 2009 and 2013 the prevalence of cost burden decreased from 40 to 36 percent for older owner/renter households and from 39 to 34 percent for older-member households. For households headed by older Americans with children in their homes, housing cost burden remained relatively the same at approximately 40 percent. (Administration on Aging, A Profile of Older Americans: 2016)

  • As a share of total expenditures, health care increased dramatically with age in 2014. For the group age 75 and over, the share (16 percent) was more than double the share for the age 45–54 group (7 percent) and larger than the share the oldest group allocated to transportation (14 percent) or the share allocated to food (12 percent). (Administration on Aging, A Profile of Older Americans: 2016)

Social Security

  • About 60 million persons received Social Security benefits for December 2015, an increase of 956,277 (1.6 percent) since December 2014. Seventy-two percent were retired workers and their spouses and children, 10 percent were survivors of deceased workers, and 18 percent were disabled workers and their spouses and children. (Social Security Administration, Annual Statistical Supplement 2016)

  • The number of beneficiaries aged 65 or older rose from about 37.2 million in 2010 to about 43.2 million in 2015 (16.0 percent). The number of beneficiaries aged 85 or older increased by about 8.0 percent during the 5-year period, from about 5.2 million in 2010 to about 5.7 million in 2015. In 2015, about 61,000 centenarians were Social Security beneficiaries. (Social Security Administration, Annual Statistical Supplement 2016)

  • About 10.2 million persons received benefits based on disability—8,909,430 disabled workers, 1,068,443 disabled adult children, and 259,331 disabled widows and widowers. In addition, 141,760 spouses and 1,633,870 minor and student children of disabled workers received benefits. (Social Security Administration, Annual Statistical Supplement 2016)

Alzheimer's Disease

  • In 2017, Alzheimer's and other dementias will cost the nation $259 billion. By 2050, these costs could rise as high as $1.1 trillion. (Alzheimer's Association - Latest Facts & Figures)

  • 35 percent of caregivers for people with Alzheimer's or another dementia report that their health has gotten worse due to caregiver responsibilities, compared to 19 percent of caregivers for older people without dementia. (Alzheimer's Association - Latest Facts & Figures)

  • More than 15 million Americans provide unpaid care for people with Alzheimer's or other dementias. (Alzheimer's Association - Latest Facts & Figures)

  • Approximately one quarter of dementia caregivers are "sandwich generation" caregivers — meaning that they care not only for an aging parent, but also for children under age 18. (Alzheimer's Association - Latest Facts & Figures)

Autism

  • CDC estimates that about 1 in 68 children has been identified with ASD (or 14.6 per 1,000 8-year-olds). (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - Autism Spectrum Disorder)

  • In January 2015, CDC launched a 4th phase of funding for the ADDM Network. (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - Autism Spectrum Disorder)

Disability Statistics

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