Older Persons' Health

Data are for the U.S.

Life expectancy at 65 years
  • Both sexes: 19.4 years
  • Men: 18.0 years
  • Women: 20.6 years

Source: Deaths: Final Data for 2016, table 3 pdf icon[PDF – 2 MB]

Fair or poor health
  • Percent of noninstitutionalized persons aged 65 and over in fair or poor health: 21.6% (2016)

Source:Health, United States, 2017, table 45 pdf icon[PDF – 9.8 MB]

Need help with personal care
  • Percent of noninstitutionalized persons aged 65 and over who need help with personal care from other persons: 7.0%

Source: Early release of selected estimates based on data from the 2018 National Health Interview Survey, data table for figure 12.1

Smoking
  • Percent of noninstitutionalized persons aged 65 and over who currently smoke cigarettes: 8.5%

Source: Early release of selected estimates based on data from the 2018 National Health Interview Survey, data table for figure 8.3

Obesity
  • Percent of noninstitutionalized persons with obesity (2013-2016)
    • Men aged 65-74: 40.2%
    • Men aged 75 and over: 28.0%
    • Women aged 65-74: 43.5%
    • Women aged 75 and over: 32.7%

Source: Health, United States, 2017, table 58 pdf icon[PDF – 9.8 MB]

Hypertension
  • Percent of noninstitutionalized persons with hypertension (measured high blood pressure and/or taking antihypertensive medication) (2013-2016)
    • Men aged 65-74: 61.1%
    • Men aged 75 and over: 67.4%
    • Women aged 65-74: 67.4%
    • Women aged 75 and over: 78.7%

Source: Health, United States, 2017, table 54 pdf icon[PDF – 9.8 MB]

Percent of long-term care services users who are aged 65 and over
  • Percent of adult day services center participants: 62.5% (2016)
  • Percent of home health agency patients: 81.9% (2015)
  • Percent of hospice patients: 94.6% (2015)
  • Percent of nursing home residents : 83.5% (2016)
  • Percent of residential care community residents: 93.4% (2016)

Source: Long-Term Care Providers and Services Users in the United States, 2015-2016, Appendix III. Detailed Tables, table VIII pdf icon[PDF – 5.6 MB]

Mortality
  • Number of deaths of persons age 65 and over: 2,003,458
  • Deaths per 100,000 population:
    • 65-74: 1,788.6
    • 75-84: 4,474.8
    • 85 and over: 13,392.1

Source: Deaths: Final Data for 2016, tables 6, 7 pdf icon[PDF – 2 MB]

Leading causes of death among persons aged 65 and over
  • Heart disease
  • Cancer
  • Chronic lower respiratory disease

Source: Health, United States, 2017, table 20 pdf icon[PDF – 9.8 MB] (data are for 2016)

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Page last reviewed: January 19, 2017