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Survey: Ageing but sprightly

Health

    Despite the boom in Orthodox births, the Jewish population is ageing.

    Over half of all those aged 65 per cent report some limitation or discomfort because of health — although that remains a minority for those under 80.

    Just over half of all those aged 90 plus experience “a lot” of limitation or disability, and another 28 per cent “a little” — which still suggests a relatively sprightly group of nonagenarians.

    Nearly one in five Jews — 18 per cent — is looking after a relative, while eight per cent have a relative in residential care.

    Almost two in five — 38 per cent — of senior citizens receive infrequent visits from relatives. Quite a few elderly people could therefore be socially isolated — although that in part may be due to family living further away.

    If they had to go into residential care, just over a third of the over-65s would prefer a Jewish institution, while 32 per cent would rather an environment with a “Jewish ethos” and are not so bothered about kashrut.

    Health-conscious British Jews are ready to pay for treatment: as many as 47 per cent of those who answered the survey are on a private medical scheme.

    When it comes to children, 15 per cent of those of school age have special needs.

    Most of these are to do with learning difficulties, with 16 per cent suffering from some kind of physical impairment and five per cent some form of mental health problem or depression.

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