HSC4564 Notes - Health Care Needs for the Elderly...

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Health Care Needs for the Elderly Introduction Elderly are considered 65 and older. This is because 65 used to be the age of full retirement benefits from social security. o Most do not consider themselves old until they become sick or dependant Young old = 65 – 74 o More vigorous o Higher Incomes o More likely to be married o Fewer health problems Old-Old = 75 and above Gerontology is the study of aging. Major focuses on: biological, behavioral, and social sciences. Geriatrics refers to the medical care of older people. o Primarily concerned with changes that occur with age as a result of disease. The chance of growing old with disabilities due to poor health is much greater than the chance of dying from them. Health care expenditures account for 16% of GDP, about 2 trillion dollars/year. o Medical expenditure of the elderly account for about 1/3 of that, yet elders pay more out of pocket than before Medicare was enacted. Chapter 1 In 2010 the country will experience the beginning of the largest elder growth spurt when the baby boomer generation turns 65. For the first time in history, elderly ethnic groups will expand faster than the white population.
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o By 2030, about 1 in 4 elders will be a minority. Hispanics and Asians/Pacific Islander will increase the fastest growing to more than 3 times their current population. o Why? More people are surviving to old age Birthrate is relatively constant 4 Largest minority groups are: (Comprise 18% of elderly population) o Black Americans Die almost 5 years earlier than whites In 2004 life expectancy of blacks was: o Women – 76.5 years (4+ years less than white women) o Men – 69.8 Years (Almost 6 years less than white men) 1 in 4 elderly blacks are poor or near poor 3 times more likely to be poor than whites Largest minority group in US comprising about 8% of total elderly population
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HSC4564 Notes - Health Care Needs for the Elderly...

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