Changes in the non-communicable disease (NCD) profile of older adults living in a rapidly-aging, developing country are described. Methods. Data from a 2012 nationally representative survey of 2,943 older adults were used to determine the burden of NCDs important to elder health. Additionally, the percentage change in NCD prevalence over a 23-year period (1989–2012) was determined. Results. In 2012, approximately 75.3% of the sample reported at least one NCD; 47.5% reported comorbidities. High blood pressure (61%), arthritis (35%) and diabetes (26%) were the most reported conditions, peaking in the 70–79 age group. Females reported higher rates of disease than males. Significant increases in prevalence occurred for all conditions except arthritis; the most significant were in diabetes (157%) and cancer (118%). Conclusion. Rapid increases in NCDs are of great public health importance. Strengthening of primary health care and improvements in human resources must occur if the well-being of older adults is to be improved.


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pp. 475-487
Launched on MUSE
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