Life Tables by Nativity for the 65-and-Older Population Using Linked Medicare Enrollment Data: A Feasibility Study

Shannon Sabo , U.S. Census Bureau
Esther R. Miller, U.S. Census Bureau
Elizabeth Arias, National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), CDC
Heather King, U.S. Census Bureau

The U.S. Census Bureau’s Population Estimates Program (PEP) and the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) are collaborating to develop nativity-specific life tables for the 65 and older population. This paper documents a feasibility study of using Medicare enrollment data linked to Social Security Administration data to produce the tables. We illustrate data challenges, present descriptive statistics, and show a series of tables and figures that describe enrollment status, retirement coverage, and other characteristics in the linked Medicare data. This exploratory analysis should lead to a refinement of the population at risk implied by the Medicare enrollment data, with a particular focus on the 90 and older ages. Using the results from this study, PEP and NCHS will develop nativity-specific life tables for the 65 and older population in future work. These tables will improve population estimates and provide a more accurate story of population health within the U.S.

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 Presented in Session 3. Population, Development, & the Environment; Data & Methods; Applied Demography