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עמוד בית
Tue, 28.05.24


IMAJ | volume

Journal 5, May 2003
pages: 375-378

The Challenges of Success: The Aging of Israeli Society


    In 2001 the number of residents aged 65 and over in Israel was 639,000, or 10% of the population. The rate of increase of the elderly population is twice that of the general population, thus the predicted number of elderly for 2020 is around 1,025,000, representing a 60% increase. While this process is determined by a decline in both fertility and mortality, in Israel, immigration has also been a central factor in the process of aging. Life expectancy stands at 76.7 for men and 80.9 for women; at age 65 it is 16.4 years for men and 18.5 for women. The major factor influencing the increase in life expectancy during the past two decades has been the prevention of death among older people. Population aging, or “the demographic transition,” also represents an "epidemiological transition” – from high rates of infectious and communicable diseases, to high rates of chronic diseases among older people. During the past two decades, the number of disabled elderly has increased more than 2.5 times. In 2001, there were about 97,400 disabled elderly in Israel, constituting about 15% of all elderly. By the year 2010, the number of disabled elderly is expected to reach 120,100. The rate of increase of the disabled elderly population is almost double that of the total elderly population, due to changes in this population’s composition. However, recent research indicates that new cohorts of elderly are healthier than earlier cohorts but experience a decline in health at older ages. While advances in standard of living, medicine, and technology have made this possible, a greater allocation of resources is required to prevent disability and maintain the quality of life.

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