Cohort, Gender and Socioeconomic Inequalities in Trajectories of Frailty: Findings from a Growth Modelling Approach

Monday, July 14, 2014: 6:45 PM
Room: Booth 40
Oral Presentation
James NAZROO , University of Manchester, United Kingdom
Alan MARSHALL , University of Manchester, United Kingdom
We have seen a rapid and continuing growth in life expectancy. This, coupled with the baby boomer cohort heading into post-retirement life, has led to significant policy concern with the financial pressures resulting from an increasing proportion in the population of older, non-productive and dependent people. In contrast, the baby boomer cohort is also presented as extremely fortunate, or selfish. As a result of benefiting from social welfare reforms post Second World War, it is suggested that baby boomers are able to retire early and in some luxury, at the expense of younger generations – hence the accusation of selfishness. Coupled with this, there are also suggestions that we are also seeing a compression of morbidity. That is, alongside increasing life expectancy we are also seeing a shorter proportion of later life spent in illness or disability. Baby boomers appear to be a truly fortunate generation.

In this paper we will examine age cohort differences in frailty trajectories to test the extent to which we are seeing a compression of morbidity, and then we will examine the extent to which any change in frailty trajectories is distributed similarly across socioeconomic and gender groups. To do this we use data from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing, which allow us to examine overlapping frailty trajectories for different age cohorts.