From January to September 2017, 6.6% of adults aged 65 or more years needed help with activities of daily living (also called personal care), according to data newly released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics.
This estimate was not significantly different from the 2016 estimate of 6.4%, however, the NCHS said in “Early Release of Selected Estimates Based on Data From the National Health Interview Survey, January–September 2017.”
The data are based on household interviews for the National Health Interview Survey.
Over the long term, from 1997 to September 2017, no clear trend was observed in the percentage of older adults who needed help with ADLs from other people, the NCHS said.
Comparing age groups from January to September 2017, however, adults aged 85 or more years were more than twice as likely as adults aged 75 to 84 to need help with personal care from other people — 21.6% versus 7.9% — and adults aged 85 or more years were more than six times as likely as adults aged 65 to 74 (3.2%) to need help with ADLs from other people. This finding was in keeping with the center’s recent surveys.
Other findings from the timeframe of January to September 2017:
- Among males and females aged 65 or older, the need for help with personal care from other people increased with age.
- For all adults aged 65 and older, and for the age groups 65 to 74 and 75 to 84, women were more likely than men to need help with ADLs.
- 10.5% of non-Hispanic black adults, 10.3% of Hispanic adults and 5.7% of non-Hispanic white adults needed help with personal care.