29 Long-Term Care Statistics & Facts

Long-term care is a pressing issue in America as the aging population continues to grow.

Published On:
October 1, 2023

Long-term care is a pressing issue in America as the aging population continues to grow. Here are 29 statistics that provide a closer look at the reality of aging in America:

Top 10 Key Long-Term Care Statistics

  1. By 2030, an estimated 20% of the US population will be over the age of 65. (Source: US Census Bureau)
  2. Over 70% of people over the age of 65 will require some form of long-term care in their lifetime. (Source: Department of Health and Human Services)
  3. In 2020, the national median cost of a private room in a nursing home was $8,821 per month. (Source: Genworth)
  4. A semi-private room in a nursing home costs an average of $7,756 per month. (Source: Genworth)
  5. In 2019, the national median cost of in-home care was $4,385 per month. (Source: Genworth)
  6. Women are more likely than men to require long-term care, with 79% of nursing home residents being female. (Source: AARP)
  7. Over 60% of nursing home residents have some form of cognitive impairment. (Source: Department of Health and Human Services)
  8. The average length of stay in a nursing home is 835 days, or just over two years. (Source: National Care Planning Council)
  9. In 2018, there were 4.5 million Medicaid beneficiaries receiving long-term care. (Source: Kaiser Family Foundation)
  10. The number of people using home health care services is expected to increase by 47% by 2026. (Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics)

Who Needs Long-Term Care?

  • People with disabilities under the age of 65 account for 15% of nursing home residents. (Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
  • More than half of all long-term care services are provided to people over the age of 65, while the remaining services are provided to younger people with disabilities or chronic conditions. (Source: Department of Health and Human Services)
  • About 62% of assisted living residents require help with three or more activities of daily living, such as dressing, bathing, and eating. (Source: National Center for Assisted Living)
  • In 2020, the national median cost of assisted living was $4,300 per month for a one-bedroom unit. (Source: Genworth)
  • Over 90% of adults over the age of 65 want to age in place in their own homes rather than move to a nursing home or assisted living facility. (Source: AARP)
  • Family caregivers provide an estimated 80% of long-term care services in the United States, valued at approximately $470 billion per year. (Source: AARP)

Long-Term Care Statistics Worldwide

  • In Japan, over 28% of the population is over the age of 65, making it the country with the highest percentage of elderly citizens in the world. (Source: World Bank)
  • In Canada, approximately 15% of seniors live in long-term care facilities. (Source: Canadian Institute for Health Information)
  • Australia spends an estimated 1.2% of its GDP on long-term care services for older adults. (Source: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare)
  • In Europe, dementia affects over 10 million people and is one of the leading causes of disability in older adults. (Source: World Health Organization)
  • The number of people aged 80 years or older in China is expected to reach 90 million by 2050, highlighting a growing need for long-term care services in the country. (Source: United Nations Population Division)
  • In India, only about 20% of older adults have access to formal long-term care services due to limited availability and affordability. (Source: HelpAge India)

Long-Term Care Statistics in the U.S.

  • The number of Americans aged 65 and older is projected to nearly double from 52 million in 2018 to 95 million by 2060. (Source: Administration for Community Living)
  • In 2020, there were approximately 1.4 million people residing in nursing homes across the country. (Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
  • Nearly half of all nursing home residents have some form of diagnosed dementia. (Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
  • Over one-third of nursing home residents have pressure ulcers, which are often caused by prolonged immobility. (Source: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality)
  • Approximately 40% of all Medicaid spending goes towards long-term care services, making it the largest payer for these services in the U.S. (Source: Kaiser Family Foundation)
  • The average annual cost of adult day health care services was $19,240 in 2020. (Source: Genworth)

Long-Term Care Statistics by Facility Type

  • 28,900 assisted living and similar residential care facilities
  • 15,600 nursing home facilities
  • 12,200 home health agencies
  • 4,600 adult day care centers
  • 4,300 hospice agencies

Long-Term Care Demographic Statistics

  • The average age of a nursing home resident is 79 years old. (Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
  • Over half of all nursing home residents are widowed or have never been married. (Source: National Center for Health Statistics)
  • African Americans and Hispanics are more likely to require long-term care than white Americans, with 40% of African Americans and 37% of Hispanics requiring some form of long-term care in their lifetime compared to 33% of white Americans. (Source: Department of Health and Human Services)
  • Approximately 60% of nursing home residents have at least one living child, but only about one-third receive visits from their children regularly. (Source: National Institute on Aging)
  • Nearly two-thirds of all nursing home residents are women, while men tend to utilize home health care services more frequently. (Source: National Institute on Aging)
  • The majority of family caregivers providing long-term care services are women, making up about two-thirds of all family caregivers. (Source: AARP)

Long-Term Care and Health Outcomes

  • Studies have shown that 40% of nursing home residents experience depression, while 25% of assisted living residents suffer from the same condition. (Source: American Psychological Association)
  • Older adults who receive long-term care at home have a lower risk of hospitalization than those who live in nursing homes or other institutional settings. (Source: National Institute on Aging)
  • Nearly 60% of family caregivers report high levels of stress, which can lead to negative health outcomes such as depression and anxiety. (Source: Family Caregiver Alliance)
  • Long-term care residents are at higher risk for infections such as pneumonia and urinary tract infections due to weakened immune systems and close living quarters. (Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
  • Falls are a leading cause of injury among older adults receiving long-term care, with approximately 1 in 4 nursing home residents falling each year. (Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
  • Residents in nursing homes that provide consistent staffing have better outcomes than facilities with high staff turnover rates, including fewer hospitalizations and lower rates of pressure ulcers and falls. (Source: Journal of the American Geriatrics Society)

Family and Informal Caregivers

  • There are approximately 65.7 million informal and family caregivers in the United States who provide care to someone who is ill, disabled or aged. (Updated February 2015)
  • About 52 million caregivers, or one out of every five households, are involved in caregiving for persons aged 18 or over. (Updated February 2015)
  • Of the total number of caregivers, 43.5 million provide care for someone aged 50 or older, and 14.9 million care for someone with Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia. (Updated February 2015)
  • In addition, an estimated 27.3 million family caregivers provide personal assistance to adults aged 15 or older with a disability or chronic illness.
  • Family, friends and neighbors provide care to between 5.8 million and 7.22 million people aged 65 or older who need assistance with everyday activities. (Source: AARP)
  • Approximately 8.9 million informal caregivers provide care to someone aged 50 or older with dementia.
  • Based on projections, by the year 2007, the number of caregiving households in the U.S. for persons aged 50 or older could reach 39 million.
  • Two out of three older people with disabilities who receive long-term services and supports (LTSS) at home get all their care exclusively from their family caregiver, mostly wives and daughters. Another quarter receives some combination of family care and paid help; only nine percent receive paid help alone.

Home and Community-Based Care

  • The vast majority (80%) of elderly people who receive assistance, including those with several functional limitations, live in private homes in the community rather than in institutions. (Updated February 2015)
  • Elderly people in the community with limitations in three or more activities of daily living (ADLs) receive an average of nine hours of assistance per day from both formal and informal sources of care. Those aged 85 or older with that degree of impairment typically receive about 11 hours of assistance per day. (Updated February 2015)
  • The Olmstead Decision, issued by the Supreme Court in July 1999, upheld the right of individuals to receive care in the community instead of an institution whenever possible, formalizing the trend towards community-based services rather than nursing home placement.
  • The proportion of Americans aged 65 and over with disabilities who rely entirely on formal care for their personal assistance needs increased from five percent in 1984 to nine percent in 1999.
  • Between 2000 and 2002, the number of licensed assisted living and board-and-care facilities increased from 32,886 to 36,399 nationally, reflecting the trend towards community-based care as opposed to nursing homes. However, most assisted living facilities are unlicensed.

Nursing Home Care

  • Institutionalization becomes more common with older age. In 2010, about one in eight people aged 85 or older (13%) lived in institutions, compared to only one percent of those aged 65 to 74. (Updated February 2015)
  • As of 2012, there were 1.4 million people living in nursing homes across the United States. (Updated February 2015)
  • Between 2002 and 2012, private-pay prices for a private or semi-private room in a nursing home increased by an average of 4.0% and 4.5% per year, respectively. (Updated February 2015)
  • In 1999, of the population aged 65 and over living in nursing homes, 52% were aged 85 or older, while 35% were aged 75 to 84, and only 13% were aged 65 to 74.
  • The number of adults aged 65 and older living in nursing homes increased from 1.3 million in 1985 to 1.5 million in 1999. In the latter year, almost three-quarters (1.1 million) of these older residents were women.


Long-term care is a complex and multifaceted issue that affects millions of people worldwide. From the growing number of elderly citizens to the rising costs of care, there are many challenges that must be addressed in order to ensure that everyone has access to the care they need. Family caregivers play a crucial role in providing long-term care services, but more support is needed to help them manage the physical and emotional demands of caregiving.

As we look towards the future, it's clear that long-term care will continue to be an important issue for policymakers, healthcare providers, and families alike. By working together, we can develop innovative solutions that improve the quality of life for older adults and their caregivers while also reducing the financial burden on individuals and society as a whole.


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