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Women continue to outlive men as numbers of centenarians on the rise

February 2014

Centenarians on the riseThe number of centenarians in Ontario increased by more than 70 per cent over the last 15 years, with women making up more than 85 per cent of people 100 or older, according to new research led by Dr. Paula Rochon, Vice-President, Research, and senior scientist at Women’s College Research Institute.

The study was published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, and was covered by the National Post.

“Our study highlights that older people are living longer and that women make up a significant proportion of centenarians, challenging us to consider tailoring health and social care to meet their particular needs,” said Rochon.

Rochon and her team found that more than 40 per cent of centenarians are living in the community, and that some of them receive no publically funded home care support. In addition, while almost all centenarians in Ontario receive care from a primary care physician, only about 5 per cent of them are assessed by geriatricians.

“Our findings suggest that we need to find ways to provide support to older adults in their homes,” says Rochon. “As well, all healthcare workers should receive training in geriatrics. Future research should continue to investigate the profile and health service use of centenarians, so that the delivery of services to this important older population can be improved.”

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