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American Indian Elder Health: Critical Information for Researchers and Policymakers

January 1, 2010

Fact Sheet

Authors: Delight E. Satter, MPH, Steven P. Wallace, PhD

As more American Indians and Alaska Natives (American Indian or AIAN) live to adulthood and old age, the elderly population aged 55 and older is projected to increase from 5.5% of the total U.S. AIAN population in 1990 to 12.6% in 2050. The shifting demographic profile of the population calls for focused attention on the health status of AIAN elders, particularly in California where more American Indian elders reside than any other state.

This fact sheet provides a quick summary of key economic, demographic and health trends facing AIAN elders, including cancer screening rates, health behaviors, falls as well as access to care, among other issues.

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