HLTB01H3Y: Health, Aging and the Life Cycle
Department of Health Studies
University of Toronto at Scarborough
The Aging of the Population.
A&G: Chapter 2 -Demography of Aging.
Demographics and Changes
- There has been a dramatic change in population demographics in the last century that continues to
provide ongoing challenges for health care providers to provide adequate services to the increasing
number of older adults in the world.
- As people continue to age and as the baby boomers hit age 65, we know we are going to have a
problem. Many people will live longer, healthier lives and some may decide to continue working.
Unfortunately many people in the 80’s and 90’s will require new, innovative strategies to support
them. Who is going to be available to provide support for the aging boomers? WHO IS GOING
- Sandwich generation: have to take care of their kids and their elderly parents
- Europe is the oldest continent in the world and Canada in 1996, 9% of people were 65+. By 2001,
this number is going to increase or double. In Canada the foreign born population is older than the
native one. In 1996, 18% of immigrants were 65+, compared to 11% of Canadian born.
- The worldwide demographic shift has enabled researchers to appreciate that aging is not
genetically determined but is plastic and capable of being influenced by external factors.
- Chronic diseases more prevalent among population groups. Ethnic differences and life expectancy
by ethnicity are due to health behaviour habits and differential immigration patterns
- Healthy immigrant effect (GEE): when immigrants come to Canada, they are healthier than the
native born people living here. After 10 yrs since the immigration, their healthcare status starts to
decline. This can be due to pressure, stress, lifestyle changes,
- We need to provide preventative care and be aware of them so we can adequately respond to
- In 1905, children and young people represented most of the pop. In 1975, the demographics had
changed and infants and children were not the largest group. The largest group was the boomers
who were aged 10-30 at that time.
Population Aging in the United States
- more than 80% of older adults live independently in their homes
- aging in place: home care services in the home because it is cheaper than providing it in LT (long
term) care facilities.
- In 1905, children and young people represented a large segment of the population with only a
small percentage of individuals of 65 years of age and older.
- In 1900, there were only approximately 100,000 people who were over the age of 85 in the United
States. The probability of reaching 100 years of age improved during the 20th century. In 1879, a
person had a 1/400 chance of living to be 100 years old, but as of 1980, there was a 1/87 chance to
living to 100.
- The economic implications of caring for those 85+, there is more probability of getting a chronic
condition and it cost more money trying to treat them
- Infant mortality rates were high and age specific life expectancy has changed and this reflects a
decrease in infant and maternal mortality rates. We have better med care, sanitation, nutrition
- The federal agency is expecting the # of seniors to reach 9.9 million – 10.9 million
- Patrice Dion (demographic analyst with stats can): “these numbers are a direct result of the baby
boom generation. Aging is already there in the age structure of the generation. By 2011 the first
baby boomers will reach 65, and by 2031, all the baby boomers will be 65+”
o Based on these projections, we have a problem. We don’t have the proper number of
geriatricians or medical professionals to deal with the elderly compared to paediatricians.
We need more people specializing in geriatric care to provide care to the elderly.