Most U.S. Adults 50 and Older Report Good Health: Survey

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July 9, 2021 -- Most U.S. adults (77%) ages 50 and older successful the United States rated their wide wellness arsenic good, precise good, oregon fantabulous successful an online survey conducted by WebMD and Capital Caring Health (CCH), a nonprofit hospice/advanced unwellness attraction enactment based successful Virginia.

Among the respondents, 41% said their wellness was precise bully oregon excellent.

However, the ratings differed mostly by race, employment status, and income.

Self-Reported Health Status by Race/Ethnicity*

Health Status           % White                     % Black                   % Hispanic**

Excellent/Very Good

43

25

38

Good

34

46

45

Fair/Poor

23

29

17

* Sample sizes were excessively tiny to study results for those of Asian, American Indian/Native Alaskan, and Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander descent.

** Respondents who said they were of Hispanic root were not counted successful the Black, White, oregon different categories to debar overlap.

Employment presumption was besides associated with a important quality successful the mode radical viewed their wellness astatine the apical tier and bottommost tier.

The mediate tier (“good” health) was reported likewise (from 33% to 37%) whether a idiosyncratic was employed, retired, oregon not employed. However, employed respondents were overmuch much apt to study they had “excellent” oregon “very good” wellness (51% vs. 44% for retirees and 21% for the not employed).

Conversely, those who were not employed were acold much apt to study “fair” oregon “poor” wellness (45%) than those who were employed (13%) oregon retired (20%).

Similarly, respondents with incomes of little than $50,000 were 3 times much apt to study their wellness arsenic “fair” oregon “poor” than were those with incomes of much than $100,000 (36% vs 12%).

WebMD/CCH surveyed 3,464 U.S. residents ages 50 and older betwixt Aug. 13 and Nov. 9, 2020.  WebMD.com readers were randomly invited to instrumentality a 10-minute online survey.

Aging astatine Home a Priority

The survey besides highlighted a beardown penchant for aging successful place, says Steve Cone, main of communications and philanthropy astatine CCH.

“More present than ever before, acknowledgment to the COVID experience, babe boomers and their children truly judge that’s the beatified grail,” helium says.

Cone notes that the speedy dispersed of COVID-19 done immoderate nursing homes aboriginal successful the pandemic apt has strengthened people’s resoluteness to unrecorded retired their lives successful their ain homes.

The survey indicated that 85% of radical aged 50+ who are surviving successful their ain home, a household member’s home, oregon a loved one’s location responded that it is “very important” oregon “important” to enactment successful their location arsenic they age.

When asked what services they would request to proceed their surviving situation, the astir communal responses were housekeeping, location repair services, and proscription (listed arsenic needs by 35% to 45% of respondents). Regarding changes they would person to marque to consciousness harmless successful their location arsenic they age, installing drawback bars and/or information rails successful the bath/shower was the astir fashionable reply (50%).

Use of Telemedicine

Respondents were besides asked astir their acceptance of telemedicine, and 62% said they would beryllium apt oregon precise apt to prosecute successful virtual visits with a doc it successful the future.

However, the likelihood varied by income level. Specifically, respondents with incomes implicit $100,000 were importantly much apt to accidental they would usage telemedicine successful the aboriginal than were those with incomes beneath $50,000 (74% vs 60%).  They were besides much apt to already person utilized telemedicine.

Percentage Who Have Used Telemedicine by Income

Income Level             % Use

More than $100,000

64

$50,000-$100,000

54

Less than $50,000

47

Although respondents mostly embraced telemedicine, they are little assured astir immoderate types of monitoring, according to Cone.

Emergency effect (64%) was the starring benignant of distant monitoring respondents ages 50 and older would allow. Only a number of respondents would let the different types of monitoring asked astir successful the survey.

Close to one-quarter of respondents would not let immoderate benignant of monitoring.

Fewer than one-third would let tracking of medicine compliance, refrigerator use, slumber habits, oregon bath use.

People spot monitoring of immoderate movements arsenic “Orwellian,” Cone says.

Knowledge of Hospice

The survey findings enactment the request for much wide usage of hospice truthful radical tin enactment successful their homes arsenic they age, Cone says.

When unwellness gets severe, “There’s nary crushed you person to get rushed to the exigency country oregon upwind up successful a hospital,” Cone says.

He notes that hospice and palliative attraction tin travel to patients wherever they reside -- successful their home, an assisted surviving center, a nursing home, oregon adjacent a infirmary room.

“That doesn’t mean the doc isn’t involved,” helium says. “But moving arsenic a team, we tin support them successful their homes and their manner intact.”

Patients whose doctors attest that they are apt to unrecorded a maximum 6 months are eligible for hospice. But astir families hold excessively agelong to agelong to commencement hospice oregon palliative attraction for a patient, Cone says, and whitethorn not beryllium alert of what these services typically cover, including repast mentation and favored care.

In the survey, astir one-third of respondents said they did not cognize that palliative attraction is thing that “can beryllium fixed astatine immoderate signifier of a superior illness” oregon “provides non-medical services (e.g., patient/family communication, assistance with security issues, scheduling appointments, arranging transportation).”

He notes palliative attraction and hospice are covered by Medicare and Medicaid and besides by astir backstage security plans oregon by idiosyncratic companies providing the service.

However, wellness attraction providers whitethorn person to flooded a wide reluctance to sermon hospice erstwhile sharing options for those severely ill.

The survey showed that portion 51% of those 50 and older are astatine slightest “slightly interested” successful learning much astir hospice, a astir adjacent fig accidental they are “not astatine each interested” (49%).

Most Using Hospice Are White

More than 90% of those surveyed reported that aspects of hospice care, including “comfort and alleviation from symptom astatine the extremity of patients’ lives,” providing a dedicated attraction team, and an alternate to different attraction settings, are “very important” oregon “important.”

However, nationalist hospice usage rates are highly debased for minorities and the LGBTQ community, according to Cone. Among Medicare hospice recipients, 82% were white, 8.2% Black, 6.7% Hispanic, and 1.8% Asian oregon Pacific Islander, according to the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization.

Those numbers awesome a request for outreach to those communities with accusation connected what services are disposable and however to entree them, helium says.

Health Costs Top Concern

The survey besides asked astir level of interest regarding matters including family, health, financials, and end-of-life directives and recovered adults aged 50 and older expressed the top magnitude of interest for wellness attraction costs that are not covered by insurance.

More than fractional (56%) said they were acrophobic oregon precise acrophobic astir those costs, which was higher than the percent acrophobic astir losing a spouse (49%).

Respondents were little acrophobic (“slightly concerned” oregon “not astatine each concerned”)about their children surviving acold away, readying end-of life-directives, and falling oregon having reduced mobility.

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