Generation X (born 1965 – 1979) will be feeling the gap between lifespan and healthspan. People ages 45 to 64 are the likeliest caregivers for the nation’s frail older people. As baby boomers age over the next several decades, the ratio of likely family caregivers to older people who need care is projected to shrink dramatically, according to the AARP Public Policy Institute.
Today there are more than seven potential caregivers, ages 45 to 64, for every person aged 80 and older. In just 6 years (2026), as the baby boomers age into their 80s, there will be four. Between 2030 and 2050, the ratio drops to just under three.
Other factors contributing to the shortage of family caregivers include:
- Families with fewer children
- Families geographically spread out
- Blended, divorced, and non-traditional family structure also complicate care to an aging or disabled family members
- More adults are working longer, well into their mid-’70s leaving less time to care for a parent.
The supply of family caregivers is unlikely to keep pace with future demand as “Boomers” transition from caregivers to care recipients – AARP study shows: https://blog.aarp.org/2013/08/26/the-future-supply-of-family-caregivers
- The period from 1990 to 2010 was marked by boomers aging into the prime caregiving years. As a result, the caregiver ratio was high and increased slightly from 6.6 to 7.2 potential caregivers ages 45-64 for every person age 80-plus.
- The period from 2010 to 2030 will be a time of transition as boomers progress into old age and the caregiver ratio declines sharply from 7.2 to 4.1 – especially when the oldest boomers begin to reach age 80 in the mid-2020s.
- The period from 2030 to 2050 will include all remaining boomers aging into the high-risk years of 80-plus, and the caregiver ratio will continue to drift downward from 4.1 to 2.9 – less than half the current ratio.
What is the solution?
Many seniors and families will need to turn to professional caregiving services as a means to remain independent in their homes. Knowing when to seek outside help and where to find quality care can be challenging, Granny NANNIES was established in 1990 to provide seniors with in-home care. Operating under the founding premise that reliable and affordable senior home care should be available to everyone; professional care providers offer personalized services to meet the requirements of any individual, regardless of age or need, in their home. Available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, we refer quality and trustworthy in-home care for you and your loved ones