There will be over 319 million elderly by 2050, threefold the number identified by the Census in 2011, according to the Longitudinal Ageing Study of India (LASI).
In 2011 census, the 60+ population accounted for 8.6% of population, accounting for 103 million elderly people. Growing at around 3% annually, the number will rise to 319 million in 2050. While 75% of them suffer from one or the other chronic disease, 40% have one or the other disability and 20% have issues related to mental health, said the report prepared by the International Institute for Population Sciences, (IIPS), Mumbai in collaboration with the Harvard School of Public Health, the University of Southern California, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the National Institute on Ageing.
The report was commissioned by the Health Ministry.
It will provide base for national and State-level programmes and policies, said the Ministry.
The LASI, Wave 1 covered a baseline sample of 72,250 individuals aged 45 and above and their spouses including 31,464 elderly persons aged 60 and above and 6,749 oldest-old persons aged 75 and above from all States and Union Territories (UTs) of India (excluding Sikkim).
“It is India’s first and the world’s largest-ever survey that provides a longitudinal database for designing policies and programmes for the older population in the broad domains of social, health and economic well-being. The evidence from LASI will be used to further strengthen and broaden the scope of National Programme for Health Care of the Elderly and also help in establishing a range of preventive and health care programmes for older population and most vulnerable among them,” said Health Minister Harsh Vardhan.