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Written by: John Wolf on Thursday, February 23, 2012 Posted in:

The American Administration on Aging recently released “A Profile of Older Americans: 2011.” The online report examines the demographics of Americans 65 and older. Health and health care, health insurance coverage, caregiving, living arrangements, disability and activity limitations, and income are among the many subject areas explored in the report.

Some notable statistics highlighted within the report include:

  • Over one in every eight, or 13.1%, of the population is an older American.
  • The population 65 and over has increased from 35 million in 2000 to 40 million in 2010 (a 15% increase) and is projected to increase to 55 million in 2020 (a 36% increase for that decade).
  • Almost 3.5 million elderly persons (9.0%) were below the poverty level in 2010. This poverty rate is not statistically different from the poverty rate in 2009 (8.9%). During 2011, the U.S. Census Bureau also released a new Supplemental Poverty Measure (SPM) which takes into account regional variations in the livings costs, non-cash benefits received, and non-discretionary expenditures but does not replace the official poverty measure. The SPM shows a poverty level for older persons of 15.9%, an increase of over 75% over the official rate of 9.0% mainly due to medical out-of-pocket expenses.
  • Older women outnumber older men at 23.0 million older women to 17.5 million older men.
  • The 85+ population is projected to increase from 5.5 million in 2010 and then to 6.6 million in 2020 (19%) for that decade.

To read the full report, visit: http://www.aoa.gov/AoARoot/Aging_Statistics/Profile/2011/docs/2011profile.pdf