New Analysis of Senior Citizen
Population Released by U.S. Census Bureau
From population growth, to living
arrangements, to work force participation its a complete picture of the
citizens age 65 and older
See graph at bottom of page showing senior
population from 1900 to 2050 and percent of total population
June 30, 2014 - A new report
released today by the U.S. Census Bureau provides the latest,
comprehensive look at the nation's population aged 65 and older (senior
citizens), comprising 40.3 million in 2010.
The 65+ in the United
States: 2010 report contains many findings about the
65-and-older population on topics such as socio-economic
characteristics, size and growth, geographic distribution, and longevity
and health. For example, Americans 65 and older living in a nursing home
fell 20 percent between 2000 and 2010, from 1.6 million to 1.3 million.
Meanwhile, the share in other care settings has been growing.
"In the United States, older men
and women are increasingly participating in the labor force," said
Enrique Lamas, the Census Bureau's associate director for demographic
programs. "The findings released today with the National Institute on
Aging (NIA) at the National Institutes of Health provide the most
detailed information available on the demographic, economic, and health
and wellness characteristics of this rapidly growing dynamic
The Division of Behavioral and
Social Research at NIA commissioned this report and has also supported
three earlier editions, the first published in 1993.
"The National Institute on Aging is
pleased to support this 65+ in the United States report," said Richard
Suzman, director of the Division of Behavioral and Social Research at
"This report series uniquely
combines Census Bureau and other federal statistics with findings from
NIA-supported studies on aging. The collaboration with Census has been
of great value in developing social, economic and demographic statistics
on our aging population with this edition highlighting an approaching
crisis in caregiving since the baby boomers had fewer children
compared to their parents."
Economic statistics from the Census
Patterns also show changes in health care-related industries.
For example, the number of employees in long-term care facilities, such
as continuing care communities, grew by about 12 percent between 2007
Labor force participation rates of
our nation's 65 and older population varied across states in 2009-2011.
Major retirement destinations, such as Arizona and Florida, had lower
rates compared with Midwest states, such as Nebraska, North Dakota and
South Dakota, where a higher share of the older population was still
part of the workforce.
This report also includes an
assessment of the impact of the December 2007 to June 2009 recession on
Following 2006 and the peak in
housing prices, homeownership rates remained stable for older
householders at 81 percent in 2011, compared with the under-65
population who experienced declines.
Many older workers remained
employed during the recession; 16.2 percent of the 65-and-older
population were employed in 2010, up from 14.5 percent in 2005. In
contrast, 60.3 percent of the 20-to-24 age group were employed in 2010,
down from 68.0 percent in 2005.
Between 2000 and 2010, Internet
usage for the 65-and-older population increased from 14.3 percent to
44.8 percent. While Internet usage among the older population made
steady gains, it remained lower than among the younger population as
75.8 percent of those age 3 to 64 went online in 2010.
In 2010, there were 40.3
million people 65 and older, 12 times the number in 1900.
Diversity among the older
population is increasing, though the majority (nearly 85 percent) still
reported as single-race white in the 2010 Census.
In 2010, 50 countries had a
higher proportion of people age 65 and older than the United States. By
2050, this number is projected to reach 98, almost half the countries in
Florida was among the states with
the highest proportions of older people in their populations in 2010,
along with West Virginia, Maine and Pennsylvania (all above 15 percent).
Eleven states had more than 1
million people 65 and older in 2010.
The West and South regions
experienced the fastest growth in their 65-plus and 85-plus populations
between 2000 and 2010.
At a more local level, the Census
Bureau's recent population estimates showed Sumter county, Fla. home
to a large retirement community had the nation's highest median age
among all U.S. counties in 2013, at 65.5 years.