In its fourth year, the 2015 United States of Aging Survey comprised 1,650 telephone interviews, including nationally representative samples of Americans 60 and older and professionals who work closely with them. Professionals included staff from the Area Agencies on Aging, credit union managers, primary care physicians and pharmacists. In addition to the national sample, older adults in Denver and Cincinnati were also surveyed.
Full Data Results
Older Americans have different concerns about their later years than the professionals who support them.
Older Americans’ top concerns:
- Maintaining their physical health (40 percent)
- Memory loss (35 percent)
- Maintaining their mental health (32 percent)
Professionals’ top concerns for older adults:
- Protecting themselves from financial scams (43 percent)
- Accessing affordable housing for older adults (38 percent)
Older adults are more confident about being prepared for aging than the professionals who support them.
- Eighty-six percent of older adults and 77 percent of professionals feel seniors are prepared overall for the process of aging.
- However, only 10 percent of professionals surveyed feel older Americans are “very prepared” to age, compared with 42 percent of seniors.
Older adults are looking to their communities for support as they age, so they can continue living in their homes as long as possible.
- Fifty-eight percent have not changed residences in more than 20 years.
- Seventy-five percent intend to live in their current home for the rest of their lives.
- Sixty-two percent would like to see services that would help with home modifications and repairs.
Professionals urge older Americans to focus on financial health.
- Eighty-six percent of professionals anticipate older adults will need support managing their finances as they age, compared with 19 percent of older adults.
- Three percent of professionals are very confident older adults will be able to afford their health care costs as they age, compared with 43 percent of older adults.
Older Americans are generally satisfied with their relationships, but less so with their finances and health:
- Family and friends (78 percent)
- Housing situation (73 percent)
- Mental wellbeing (71 percent)
- Financial situation (41 percent)
- Physical health (40 percent)