U.S. ranks high in aging index


Published Oct 4, 2013 at 05:00AM / Updated Nov 19, 2013 at 12:31AM

The United States ranks eighth out of 91 countries in terms of its level of preparedness for a coming boom in the world’s aging population.

According to the Global Age Index, the U.S. has the world’s second highest employment and education score because 60.3 percent of its population between the ages of 55 and 64 have access to the labor market and are employed.

It also scored high in the index’s enabling environment category because 90 percent of its citizens over 50 say they have relatives or friends they can count on when in trouble and 67 percent are satisfied with local public transportation.

But while it scored high in these two categories, which make up about half a country’s overall score on the aging index, the U.S. ranked 36th in terms of income security because while 82.6 percent of its citizens over 65 are covered by a pension, 23.6 percent of them live in poverty. The U.S. ranked 24th in health status because its citizens can expect to live in good health for another 17.5 years after age 60.

Sweden, Norway, Germany, the Netherlands, Canada, Switzerland and New Zealand all scored higher than the U.S. on the index, which was created by HelpAge International to measure how prepared the world will be for an aging population.

Malawi, Rwanda, Jordan, Pakistan, Tanzania and Afghanistan rank at the bottom of the list.

— From staff reports