20% of those 85+ need ADL assistance

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Approximately 20% of individuals aged 85 or more years need assistance with activities of daily living such as walking, eating, bathing or dressing. (Photo by John Merkle)
Approximately 20% of individuals aged 85 or more years need assistance with activities of daily living such as walking, eating, bathing or dressing. (Photo by John Merkle)

Approximately 20% of individuals aged 85 or more years in the United States need assistance with activities of daily living, according to newly released government data.

Overall, 19.9% of members of this age group need help with activities such as eating, bathing, dressing or walking. More women (22.9%) than men (14.4%) need assistance.

The data, which cover the January-to-June period, come from the National Health Interview Survey and were released early by the National Center for Health Statistics, which is part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Adults aged 85 or more years were more than twice as likely to need ADL assistance as were adults aged 75 to 84 years (6.9%), according to the findings, and they were more than six times more likely to need help with personal care as adults aged 65 to 74 (3.2%).

Black and Hispanic/Latino adults aged 65 or more years were more likely than white older adults to need ADL assistance (10.2%, 9.2% and 5.7%, respectively).

From “Early Release of Selected Estimates Based on Data From the National Health Interview Survey, January–June 2016 — Personal Care Needs (link in first paragraph):

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