Aging in the News

Need for Senior Care Is Expected to Increase

According to the San Francisco Department of Aging and Adult Services (DAAS) “Living with Dignity in San Francisco” report:

  • San Francisco has a significantly larger proportion of older adults and adults with disabilities than both the State of California and the nation. Also, demographic trends over the next 20 years illustrate the substantial growth of the 60+ and 85+ age groups, their increasing functional needs, and preferences for home- and community-based services, all of which necessitate a substantial expansion of long-term care and supportive service capacity.


  • Senior adults are the fastest growing age group and will comprise an increasingly larger share of San Francisco’s population. While not all of these individuals will need long-term care and supportive services, this significant increase represents the coming wave of older adults, many of whom will require some form of assistance to maintain their current level of functioning and independence. By the year 2020, the proportion of seniors (60+) will grow by 28%, to 174,000 individuals, who will comprise 21.3% of the total population.


  • San Francisco has 14,227 residents who are considered part of the “oldest old” (85+) age category, which is 10.4% of the senior (60+) population and 1.8% of the overall population. This segment of the older population is more likely to be poor and in need of long-term-care services.


  • As adults age, the likelihood of functional limitations will increase, thus leading to the need for assistance with daily activities such as dressing, bathing, walking, preparing meals, or grocery shopping. The needs of this growing segment of the population will largely drive expanding demands on the City and County of San Francisco for home- and community-based services. An improvement of current services and expansion of service capacity are needed to meet the projected demands.
 San Francisco is one of the most diverse urban areas in the nation and will continue to become more diverse. This richness in racial, ethnic, and cultural diversity calls for a high level of proficiency in planning, advocacy, and service delivery efforts to ensure cultural appropriateness and equitable access to services. According to the 2000 Census, non-Hispanic whites comprise 43.4% of the older (60+) population. Asians are the second largest group (37%), followed by Latinos (9.1%) and African-Americans (8.2%). Programs and services, including primary and specialty medical care, for the older population will continue to require greater flexibility to accommodate different cultural needs and preferences. Specifically, language differences are important considerations for strategic service planning.

Source: Excerpted from “Living with Dignity in San Francisco,” a strategic plan to make improvements in the system of community-based, long-term care and supportive services for older adults and adults with disabilities (2009 – 2013). Published by the Department of Aging and Adult Services, February 2009.

Links on Aging

We provide the following links to help you find additional information to support healthy aging for seniors.

GovBenefits, This website serves to connect citizens to government benefit program eligibility information

San Francisco Department of Public Health

San Francisco Community Clinic Consortium

The Nation’s Health, The official newspaper of the American Public Health Association

San Francisco Network of Support for Community Living, The San Francisco Human Services Agency, Department of Aging and Adult Services