Mac receives funding for aging research
Some like to say 65 is the new 55 — those who recently turned 64, perhaps — but the number-crunchers at Statistics Canada are not among these optimistic folks.
Sixty-five continues to be the bar StatsCan uses to describe how old the country is becoming. And by that measure, Canada is getting old in a hurry.
The proportion of Canadians 65 and over is projected to increase from a national average of 16.9 per cent (Hamilton’s is higher at 17.9 per cent) to 23 per cent by 2031, or nearly one-in-four people.
Moreover, 65-and-over adults outnumber those 14 and under for the first time in Canadian history.
The impact of aging on this burgeoning population is at the heart of a national study led by McMaster University.
The university announced Monday it received $417,500 from the federal government as part of $1.7 million in grants across the country, to support 25 projects in the Canadian Longitudinal Study on Aging, which is based at McMaster.
The funding for Mac will support six projects, among them, a study exploring what impacts the ability of older adults to drive effectively. The project is led by Brenda Vrkljan, from its School of Rehabilitation Science.
“To drive or not to drive?” asks a McMaster news release, adding that the project will explore the personal and environmental factors affecting driving mobility for older Canadians.
Funding for the national study is dispersed through the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.
The aging study, launched in 2010, focuses on addressing questions surrounding the biological, medical, psychological, social and economic aspects of aging and disability and disease, as researchers collect data from more than 50,000 Canadians over a period of 20 years.