City Health Study Shows 1 In 6 Senior Citizens Live Below Poverty Line

Craig Dellimore
August 23, 2019 - 6:12 pm
Dr. Nikhil Prachand, the Department of Health’s Director of Epidemiology

(Craig Dellimore/WBBM)

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CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- Chicago’s Public Health Department is out with a new, and enlightening, study of senior citizens in the city.

Dr. Nikhil Prachand, the Chicago Department of Public Health's Director of Epidemiology, said their report highlights some good news. Ninety percent of the seniors had a routine medical checkup in the past year, and are satisfied with the health care they’re getting.

But there are troubling numbers too. Among the more sobering statistics: 16 percent, or about one in six seniors surveyed, live below the poverty line. And there are racial disparities, Prachand noted. 

"One of the main areas where we felt like we discovered something is the fact that how many older adults are living in vulnurable situations," Prachand said. "We found that a third of older adults live alone (and) about a third are living with a physical disability."

He also said the study found that a quarter of senior citizens do not have English proficiency, a shocking stat. 

Prachand said the findings from this study will help guide the creation of policies for the health department, and the administration, as they move towards the year 2025. 

Last year the department reported on the health concerns and needs of the LGBT community.