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PRECISION IN ESTIMATES OF DISABILITY PREVALENCE FOR THE POPULATION AGED 65 AND OVER IN THE UNITED STATES BY RACE AND ETHNICITY

C. Siordia

J Frailty Aging 2014;3(3):187-192

Background: Populations are aging worldwide. In the United States (US), the older adult (aged ≥65) population will increase rapidly in the decades to come. Identifying public health needs in older adults requires that sample-derived estimates of disability prevalence be produced using transparent methodologies. Objectives: Produce estimates of disabilities for the US older adult population by race and ethnicity and present measures on the ‘level of precision’ in the estimates. Design: Cross-sectional study used American Community Survey (ACS) Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS) 3-year file collected during 2009-2011 survey period. Setting: Community dwelling population aged ≥65 in US. Participants: The 1,494,893 actual survey participants (unweighted count) are said to represent 40,496,512 individuals after population weights are applied (weighted count). From the weighted counts, the average age is 75, about 56% are females, and most (80%) are Non-Latino-Whites (NLW). Results: Qualitative comparisons provide some evidence that except for hearing, disability prevalence is highest in Non-Latino-Blacks along the following disability items: independent living (25%); ambulatory (34%); self-care (15%); cognitive (11%); and vision (11%). Person inflation ratios, width of 95% confidence interval, and rates of allocations are smaller in NLWs than all the other race-ethnic groups—suggesting disability estimates for NLWs merit the highest level of confidence. Conclusions: Improving measures of health in the older adult population requires that efforts continue to highlight how estimates of disability prevalence have the potential to vary in precision and as a function of various known and unknown factors.

CITATION:
C. Siordia (2014): PRECISION IN ESTIMATES OF DISABILITY PREVALENCE FOR THE POPULATION AGED 65 AND OVER IN THE UNITED STATES BY RACE AND ETHNICITY. The Journal of Frailty and Aging (JFA). http://dx.doi.org/10.14283/jfa.2014.22

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