Almost a third of Chileans will be over 80 years old in 2050, which indicates that 9 percent of the population will belong to the segment of the elderly, a report by the UC-Confuturo Observatory on Aging released yesterday.
The study indicated that three out of every ten people would be over 80 in the next three decades, equivalent to some 1,900,000 older adults.
It added, “Chileans are becoming longer-lived, but they do not necessarily experience a better quality of life”.
He added that “the low rate of education, the dependency indexes, and the unfair treatment they perceive by different societal actors directly impact their life satisfaction”.
The UC-Confuturo Observatory of Aging made visible in the survey the quality of life of the elderly and the increase in this age group in recent years.
It pointed out that three decades ago, only 11 percent of the elderly population was over 80 years old, and now represents 16.4 percent, and it is expected that by 2050 this figure will rise to 28 percent.
According to the observatory, this is “a phenomenon that entails important challenges, especially about the well-being of the fourth age group, which today is made up of 62 percent women”.
The organization said that the population over 80 in the Andean country currently has only 6.5 years of schooling, which goes hand in hand with lower economic income, the more significant presence of chronic diseases, and, therefore, lower quality of life.
Along these lines, the report stated that seven out of every ten people over the age mentioned above have risk factors or chronic diseases such as high blood pressure or hypertension (69.8 percent). This is followed by arthritis, rheumatism, high cholesterol, and diabetes or high blood sugar.
However, 78.5 percent of those interviewed said they were in better health than others of the same age.
Chile has experienced an increase in life expectancy, so organizations have begun to address issues related to the health, autonomy, sexuality, and material and social needs of the elderly.
Among the conclusions, a high heterogeneity has been established in the living conditions of this age group, which has among its greatest fears dependence and deterioration of their health.
The study established that 65.9 percent of people between 80 and 89 are autonomous, while over 90 years of age, dependence increases to 62.7 percent, emphasizing women. This situation worsens with the onset of chronic pain.