The United States Is Getting Older

  • In 2000, the median age of U.S. residents was about 35 years old. By 2022, the median was just shy of 39 years old.
  • With Baby Boomers entering retirement, the number of Americans age 65 and older is increasing at the fastest rate since the 1800s, with this population growing at a rate that is nearly five times faster than the general population between 2010 and 2020.
  • Looking forward, it is estimated that the number of Americans 65 and older will more than double by 2040 to reach 80 million, with the 85 and older population quadrupling in that same period.

Americans Want To Grow Old In Their Own Home

  • An overwhelming majority of Americans (88%) want to grow old in their own home. And enabling elderly Americans to age in place can be a cost-effective measure that improves health outcomes.
  • Many senior citizens, however, cannot live alone without support, such as help with light housework, meal preparation, and driving.
  • Unless these seniors have a family that can help, they must choose between hiring the support they need, moving to a senior residential facility against their wishes, or living at home without support in a potentially unsafe situation.

The State Department Can Expand Its Au Pair Program to Include Senior Care

  • Currently, the State Department runs a cultural exchange program under which young foreign nationals come to the United States for one or two years as au pairs, living with and providing child care for an American family.
  • Expanding the au pair program to senior care includes many benefits. It could help thousands of elderly Americans age in place; it would cost American taxpayers nothing; and it could be implemented by a simple State Department rulemaking.

Click HERE to read the policy focus and learn more about au pairs for senior care.