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-  2017 

Trends of Disability and Mortality among the Oldest-Old in China

Keywords: 高龄老人,生活自理能力,躯体功能,认知功能,健康老龄化

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摘要 文章对“中国老年健康影响因素跟踪调查”近两万名80 ~105 岁高龄老人的数据分析发现,社会经济发展使得 2008 年高龄老人存活概率和自评日常生活自理能力比 1998 年有显著改善。 医疗条件进步使健康较差高龄老人被“救”存活率提高,使 2008 年高龄老人客观量测的躯体功能和认知功能比10 年前显著下降; 这给社会和亿万家庭带来严峻挑战。研究表明,经济社会发展和人类寿命提高带来效益的同时,也会产生一定成本 ; 但它不是以往不少国际文献解释这一现象时所称的“胜利的失败”,所以没有必要为此恐慌,而需要全社会积极应对,努力实现人口健康老龄化。
Abstract:Based on analyzing data of 19,528 oldest-old aged 80-105 from Chinese Longitudinal Healthy Longevity Study,we found that the age-specific mortality rates and disability in activities of daily living ( ADL) were substantially reduced among oldest-old individuals in 2008 compared with 1998,which was due to rapid socioeconomic development. However,we also observed significant increase in disabili- ties of physical performance and cognitive capacity among the oldest-old during the same period over 1998-2008. This is because remarkable advancements in medical technology and living standards enhanced longevity and“saved”quite a lot of frail elderly's lives and thus increased overall disability rates of physical and cognitive functions. We believe that the success of increasing human lifespan will come along with both benefits ( e. g. improvement in ADL) and costs ( e. g. worsened average physical and cog- nitive capacities) among the oldest-old. However,the costs may not be considered as“failure of success”,that was widely used in connection with the theory of expansion of morbidity in the literature of population aging studies,because it sounds too pessimistic and may mislead the public. We propose to use“costs of success”and“benefits of success”to summarize the co-existence of expansion of morbid- ity and compression of morbidity,as discovered in present and other studies. We believe that the society does not need to be scared about the“costs of success”,but rather try to face the challenges by sound policy actions to reduce the costs and increase the benefits of the success of longevity,and eventually a- chieve the goal of healthy aging.


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