65+ in the United States – Census Report Paints Challenging Picture

65+ in the United States – Census Report Paints Challenging Picture 65+ in the United States: 2010, a special report released by the Census Bureau under the auspices of the National Institutes of Health highlights trends among America‰Ûªs older population, expected to more than double by mid-century, growing to 83.7 million people and one-fifth of the U.S. population by 2050. A key aspect of the report is the effect that the aging of the baby boom generation‰ÛÓthose born between 1946 and 1964‰ÛÓwill have on the U.S. population and on society in general. are projected to grow more rapidly than in any other decade since 1900. Rates of smoking and excessive alcohol consumption have declined among those 65 and older, but the percentage of overweight and obese people has increased. Between 2003-2006, 72 percent of older men and 67 percent of older women were overweight or obese. Obesity is associated in increased rates of chronic disease and higher death rates. The cost of long-term care varies by care setting. The average cost of a private room in a nursing home was $229 per day or $83,585 per year in 2010. Less than one-fifth of older people have the personal financial resources to live in a nursing home for more than three years and almost two-thirds cannot afford even one year. Medicare provides coverage in a skilled nursing facility to older and disabled patients for short time periods following hospitalization. Medicaid covers long-term care in certified facilities for qualifying low-income seniors. In 2006, Medicaid paid for 43 percent of long-term care. Read the full report hightlights here.