The older segment of the population is growing faster than any other age group. In the United States, those over 65 are projected to account for 20% of the nation, reflecting a worldwide pattern (McDonald, 1997; Perlmutter, 1990). Average life expectancy has not only increased but has led to two new categories of old age, the very-old and the old-old. There are more than 664 million people over 80 in the world, 1 for every 100 on earth, a number predicted to grow by another 370 million in 2050. The 135,000 centenarians in the United States in 1998, say fore- casters, will reach 2.2 million in the next 50 years. The upsurge of the aged is reflected in more than 1,000 college programs in gerontol- ogy, with several hundred at the graduate level, a 36-fold increase in funding from the National Institute on Aging in the last 25 years, to $685.6 million in a recent accounting, and more than a 10-times growth in the number of grants in the same period, valued at $722 million.
KeywordsArthritis Depression Dementia Lost Univer
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