Since 2016, Internet use rates among Canadians aged 15 to 64 have reached near-saturation (97.2%) levels. However, the diffusion of information and communications technology (ICT), including the Internet, has proceeded at a much slower pace among Canadians aged 65 and older. Given that Canada is an aging society, knowing about the factors associated with Internet use among seniors is crucial for ensuring their access to it. This study uses four cycles of the General Social Survey (2007, 2010, 2013 and 2016) to describe changes in Canadian seniors’ rates of Internet use, and examines the sociodemographic factors associated with such use.
In Canada, more than 137,500 seniors (age 65 and older) were hospitalized for injuries in 2017–2018, with most injuries caused by falls, according to new data from the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI). Last year, seniors accounted for more than half of all injury-related hospitalizations among Canadians, with 63% of senior hospitalizations for women. A “hospitalization” means a patient was admitted and spent at least 1 night in the hospital.
Reasons for injury hospitalizations
CIHI’s data shows that 4 out of 5 injury hospitalizations involving seniors were because of a fall; vehicle collisions were the second leading cause, with more than 5,800 seniors hospitalized last year. Vehicle collisions often involved injuries among drivers, passengers and cyclists.
Accidental poisoning, which can occur from substances such as drugs and alcohol, or gases and vapours like carbon monoxide, was the third leading cause of injury hospitalizations.
Over the past 3 years, the largest increases for injury hospitalizations among seniors were for falls (9%), vehicle collisions (8%) and collisions with people or objects (8%). The data shows that women are hurt more than men for all top 5 causes of injuries except vehicle collisions.
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People born between 1946 and 1965 currently outnumber all other generations in Canada and, according to Environics, for the first time in the history of the country, there are now more seniors than children under 14. Also, the 2016 Census showed that the number of Canadians over age 55 went up by a robust 87% in the decade between 1996 and 2006, while the number of Canadians between 16 and 54 only rose by 14% during that same period. These numbers are dramatic enough on their own, but their social implications might be even more profound. So what is the impact of this demographic shift on the housing market?
Seniors, the “Demographic Time Bomb” Changing Real Estate Trends
According to the 2016 Census, people over 55 own properties further away from major business and financial centres. In these areas, as per multiple associations and CREA numbers, properties are less expensive and also boast more elbow room than homes in bigger cities.
But as they grow older (in a decade, even the youngest boomers will turn 65), many owners exit the homeownership market, opting for rentals or senior care facilities. Others, however, start to think about downsizing or buying second homes closer to city centres, trading space for accessibility and more comfort.
All these moves might lead to a glut of boomer properties, larger homes located in smaller cities, which would not be of interest to younger generations. Both Millennials and Gen Z-ers are looking for smaller and more affordable homes as close to the hustle and bustle of downtown as possible.
And with both seniors and younger generations looking for homes in the bigger cities, the pressure on the condo market increases, putting the spotlight on a sector already receiving a lot of attention.