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Veterans Care

Demographic Trends

In 2000, the median age of veterans was fifty-seven years (U. S. Department of Veterans Affairs), compared to only thirty-six years for the general U. S. population (Administration on Aging). Over 37 percent of the veteran population (9.5 million of the total 25.5 million veterans) was age sixty-five or older, compared to 13 percent of the general population. By 2020, nearly half of the entire veteran population (7.6 million, or 45 percent, of the total 16.9 million veterans) will be age sixty-five or older. Although most veterans are male, the number of female veterans is growing. In 2000, over 5 percent (1.4 million) of all veterans and 3 percent (325,000) of veterans age sixty-five or older were female. By 2020, over 9 percent (1.6 million) of all veterans and 4 percent (316,000) of veterans age sixty-five or older will be female. Among female veterans, the proportion age sixty-five or older was 23 percent in 2000 and is projected to be 20 percent in 2020. As in the general U.S. population, the ‘‘old-old’’ are the fastest-growing segment of the veteran population. By 2020, 6 percent of all veterans and 13 percent of veterans age sixty-five or older will be age eighty-five or older (1.1 million). Thus, VA will continue to encounter a very large group of potentially frail, older veterans in the next twenty years.

Additional topics

Medicine EncyclopediaAging Healthy - Part 4Veterans Care - Mission And Service Delivery Structure, Demographic Trends, Clinical Programs In Aging, Research In Aging