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A Statistical Profile of Hispanic Older Americans Aged 65+

Introduction

Over 37.9 million Americans are aged 65 and over. Three in five people in this age group are women. Over the next forty years, the number of people aged 65 and older is expected to double, while the number of people aged 85 and older is expected to triple. All Americans are living longer and the same is true for the Hispanic population.

The Older Hispanic Population: Past, Present, and Future

Hispanic Population and Projected Population Aged 65 and older from 1980 to 2050. This table shows the growth of the Hispanic older population from 0.7 million in 1980 to 1.8 million in 2000 as well as the projected growth to 5 million in 2020 and 17.5 million in 2050.

The Hispanic older population was 2.7 million in 2008 and is projected to grow to over 17 million by 2050. In 2008, Hispanic persons made up 6.8 percent of the older population. By 2050, the percentage of the older population that is Hispanic is projected to account for 19.8 percent of the older population. By 2019, the Hispanic population aged 65 and older is projected to be the largest racial/ethnic minority in this age group.

Residence

In 2008, 70% of Hispanic persons aged 65 and over resided in four states: California (27%); Texas (19%); Florida (16%); and New York (9%).

Educational Level

Despite the overall increase in educational attainment among older Americans, there are still substantial educational differences among racial and ethnic groups. In 2008, about 46 percent of the Hispanic population aged 65 and older had finished high school, compared with 77 percent of the total older population. Also in 2008, 9 percent of Hispanic older Americans held a bachelor’s degree or higher, compared with 21 percent of all older persons.

Living Arrangements

In 2007, 65 percent of Hispanic older men lived with their spouses, 17 percent lived with other relatives, 3 percent lived with non-relatives, and 15 percent lived alone. For older Hispanic older women, 39 percent lived with their spouses, 33 percent lived with other relatives, 2 percent lived with non-relatives, and 26 percent lived alone. Although older women are more likely to live alone than are older men, the percent of Hispanic elderly men and women living alone is lower than that of the general population. Also, the percent of Hispanic older persons living with other relatives is almost twice that of the total older population.

Income

Households containing families headed by Hispanic persons 65+ reported a median income in 2008 of $33,418 (as compared to $46,720 for non-Hispanic Whites). Among such Hispanic households 19% had an income of less than $15,000 (compared to 5% for non-Hispanic Whites family households) and 48% had incomes of $35,000 or more (compared to 65% for non-Hispanic Whites).

Poverty

The poverty rate in 2008 for Hispanic older persons (65 and older) was 19.3 percent. This was more than twice the percent for non-Hispanic Whites (7.6 percent).

Health

In 2008, only 36 % of Hispanic persons aged 65+ had received pneumococcal vaccination as compared to 64% of non-Hispanic Whites and 43.4% of non-Hispanic Blacks. (2008 National Health Interview Survey)

In 2008, 9.2% of Hispanic persons aged 65+ needed help from other persons for personal care as compared to 5.7% for non-Hispanic Whites and 10.3% of non-Hispanic Blacks. (2008 National Health Interview Survey)

In 2008, 10.7% of Hispanic persons aged 65+ were diagnosed with diabetes as compared to 6.9% for non-Hispanic Whites and 10.9% for non-Hispanic Blacks. (2008 National Health Interview Survey)

Self – Rated Health Status

During 2008, about 66 percent of Hispanic older men and 66 percent of Hispanic older women reported good, very good, or excellent health. Among non-Hispanic whites, this figure was 77 percent for men and 78 percent for women. Positive health evaluations decline with age.* Among Hispanic men ages 65-74, 68 percent reported good or excellent health, compared with 57 percent among those aged 85 or older. Similarly, among Hispanic women this rate declined from 62 percent at age 65-74 to 50 percent at age 85 or older.

Access to Medical Care

In 2007, about 7.5 percent of Hispanic older persons reported that they had no usual source of medical care. In 2000, 6.5 percent reported delays in obtaining health care due to cost, and, in 2001, 20.7 percent reported that were not satisfied with the quality of the health care which they received. The comparable figures for the total population aged 65 or older show that 5.1 percent reported that they had no usual source of medical care, 4.8 percent reported delays in obtaining health care due to cost, and, in 2001, 15.6 percent reported that they were not satisfied with the quality of the health care which they received.

Participation in Older Americans Act (OAA) Programs

In 2008, State and Area Agencies on Aging provided services to a total of 10.6 million persons aged 60 and older. Consistent with the targeting requirements of the OAA, state and area agencies on aging placed considerable emphasis on services to persons with the greatest social and economic need, including members of racial and ethnic minority groups, especially those who are poor. Of the older persons who received OAA home and community-based registered services, 8.1 percent were Hispanic.


The data for this document are taken from a variety of U.S. Government sources with differing sample sizes and designs.
* 2000-2002 data

The last section, Participation in OAA Programs, reports data collected from State Agencies on Aging about the persons whom they serve.

FOR MORE INFORMATION

AoA recognizes the importance of making information readily available to consumers, professionals, researchers, and students. Our website provides information for and about older persons, their families, and professionals involved in aging programs and services. For more information about AoA, please contact: U.S. Administration on Aging, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, One Massachusetts Ave., N.W., Washington, D.C., 20001; phone: (202) 401-4541; fax (202) 357-3560; Email: aoainfo@aoa.gov; or contact our website at: www.aoa.gov

 

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Last Modified: 12/31/1600

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