Differences in the Availability of Informal and Formal Safety Net Resources for Mexican Adults Aged 50–59 in 2001 and 2012

Brian Downer , University of Texas Medical Branch
Bret Howrey, University of Texas Medical Branch
Rebeca Wong, University of Texas at Galveston

We compare the availability of informal and formal safety net resources for adults aged 50-59 in 2001 and 2012. Participants came from the 2001 (n=5505) and 2012 (n=3610) waves of the Mexican Health and Aging Study. Informal resources included family size; co-residence with adult children, location of non-resident children; and availability of family and friends. Formal resources included health insurance, pension, and receiving government financial assistance. The 2012 cohort had 1.3 fewer children and 2 fewer household residents than the 2001 cohort. In 2012, 69.4% of participants co-resided with an adult child and 15.2% had a non-resident child in the U.S. compared to 75.9% and 23.7% in 2001. A significantly lower percentage of participants in 2012 had friends in the neighborhood and had friends they could depend on. Participants with government health insurance increased from 57.9% to 82.3%. This analysis identified meaningful differences in resource availability in 2001 and 2012.

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 Presented in Session 6. Health & Mortality & Aging