ERIC Number: ED301814
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1988-Sep
Reference Count: 0
Soldo, Beth J.; Agree, Emily M.
Population Bulletin, v43 n3 Sep 1988
The older population in the United States grew twice as fast as the rest of the population in the last 20 years. This growth is expected to accelerate early in the next century as the large baby-boom cohorts move through middle age and become elderly. Substantial improvements in life expectancy at all ages, particularly at extreme old age, mean that more will be the "oldest-old," those individuals over the age of 85. While many older adults are active and healthy well past retirement, many individuals living into their 80s have to cope with chronic disabilities affecting their capacity to perform day-to-day activities. Modern medicine has made great inroads against mortality from such illnesses as heart disease and stroke, but has not eliminated all the effects of these diseases. As the population ages, the issues of health care funding and availability, particularly long-term care, increases in importance. The majority of elderly live not in nursing homes but in the community, receiving help from family and friends. This has created a tremendous demand for federal subsidies to support community-based long-term care services. One-quarter of the federal budget is now spent on the elderly. Economists estimate that government expenditures are three times greater for the elderly than for children, raising the issue of "intergenerational inequity," that is, how to balance the amount of care society provides to those who already have contributed with what is provided to those who will contribute in the future. There is interdependence among the generations, with burdens and benefits of intergenerational transfers at all stages of the life course. (Author/ABL)
Publication Type: Reports - General; Collected Works - Serials
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Population Reference Bureau, Inc., Washington, DC.