MOSCOW – Russia has set a new record for the number of centenarians aged 100 years and older. This is evidenced by the latest data from Rosstat, which Izvestia has reviewed. As of January 1, 2019, there were 20,582 such citizens in the country, which is almost 17% more than in 2017.
Moreover, the number of people who have crossed the centenary has been growing at a steady pace for eight consecutive years and almost tripled during that time. Demographers explain such high and stable indicators not only by the fact that Russians began to live longer, but also by the improvement of statistical accounting. Experts warn that increasing the number of older citizens will require the state to solve the problem of access to social and medical care for these people.
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Until 2011, the number of “100+ centenarians” was changing in waves – either increasing or decreasing. In the future, this indicator steadily sought to increase, by 2018 it increased from 7.5 thousand people to almost 20.6 thousand – 2.7 times.
Of course, the first explanation that comes to mind is the improvement of living conditions, primarily due to the development of medicine, which allows an increasing number of Russians to cross the centenary. As the head of the Ministry of Health Veronika Skvortsova recently reported, the average life expectancy in the country for the first half of 2019 in annual terms increased by eight months and reached 73.7 years (for women – up to 78.5 years). In accordance with the presidential decree in May, by 2024 this figure should increase to 78 years. To achieve this goal, it is planned to spend 1.36 trillion rubles.
However, as explained to Izvestia by Sergei Shulgin, deputy head of the international laboratory of demography and human capital of the RANEPA, such a stable, and recently explosive growth in the number of centenarians is a consequence of not only an increase in life expectancy.
“It is also a matter of improving the statistical accounting system,” the demographer emphasized. – The most accurate statistics are obtained after the census. 2011, from which stable growth began, was just the next after this event. And this allowed to operate with more accurate data.
According to the expert’s forecast, in the future we will observe further stable growth in the number of people 100+. He recalled: there are already estimates according to which every tenth child born today will live more than 100 years.
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– Such a goal, of course, depends on genetics, the development of medicine and the lifestyle of a particular person. The faster his parents and he will take care of his health, the more he can end up living. And if we talk about 90 years, then this milestone is quite achievable, even if the current conditions will not especially change, ”said Sergey Shulgin.
He cited the example of Japan, where in some regions the life expectancy of women at birth is now more than 90 years.
– This means that even if no special breakthroughs in medicine occur and the conditions are approximately at the current level, girls from these regions can easily live up to 90 years or more. Such a scenario no longer looks fantastic, ”said the demographer.
According to the high version of the demographic forecast of Rosstat, in Russia, the expected level of life expectancy at birth for women will reach 85.1 years by 2035.