Ninety and not out: Understanding our oldest old

Diane Gibson, John Goss

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: This paper draws attention to the rapidly growing number of Australian nonagenarians, presents previously unpublished information on this sub-group of older people and explores the implications for future patterns of service delivery, planning and policy. Methods: Statistical analyses of Census data and other Australian Bureau of Statistics Surveys using Table Builder Pro, combined with analysis of de-identified Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) unit record data on aged care and AIHW GRIM (mortality) data. Results: Male nonagenarians almost doubled from 2006 to 2016, while their female counterparts grew by 55%. This cohort is the first to reap cumulative advantage from the dramatic reduction in death rates from 1970. Their demographic circumstances reveal both changes and continuities compared to the previous cohort. Conclusion: Men and women aged 90 and over use a substantial proportion of aged care services, and their characteristics and circumstances are highly relevant to planning current and future aged care services.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)62-69
Number of pages8
JournalAustralasian Journal on Ageing
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2020


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