We all have one thing in common – every day, we get older. “Growing Up” shows getting old isn’t something to fear but something to look forward to.

How Do You Feel About Getting Old? Perceptions and Expectations About Aging in America (Infographic)

“Growing Up” video with Spanish subtitles.

Have Americans Reached a New Era of Optimism About Aging?

New Research Shows People over 50 Look Forward to Golden Years,
with ‘Good Health’ and ‘Wisdom’ as Leading Reasons

Pfizer Launches New Initiative, Get Old, To Amplify The Aging Dialogue Across all Generations

With 10,000 Americans turning 65 every day – and according to new research released today, a majority of them expect to live to nearly 90 – the celebration of older Americans is a developing trend, and more people are aspiring to live longer and better than ever before.

As part of Pfizer’s mission to improve the health and well-being of people at every stage of life, the company is launching Get Old, a multi-year initiative supported by nearly a dozen advocacy organizations. The goal of Get Old is to amplify the conversation on aging and learn more about how Americans at all ages are tackling aging for themselves, their family and society. At the center of the initiative is a first-of-its-kind online community, GetOld.com, where people can get and share information, add to the dialogue and contribute to the growing body of knowledge about this important topic. This critical information will help inform the unmet needs related to aging and what role the company and its partners can play to help people live longer and better lives.

“We all have one thing in common – each day we get older. At every age and stage of our lives, we can make choices and take actions that will help us live longer and better. There are so many positive role models today who are changing how people think about aging," said Dr. Freda Lewis-Hall, Pfizer’s Chief Medical Officer. "There’s a huge opportunity to support the shift that’s underway. At GetOld.com, we want to hear what people want and need to live better and healthier and create a forum for dialogue on what it means to ‘get old’ today.”

The latest research conducted as part of the Get Old initiative asked more than 1,000 Americans, who are 18 to 65+ years old, about how they feel about getting old. The results show that priorities and perceptions about aging shift over time.

Key findings include:

  • More of those over 50 (41 percent) said they were “optimistic” about getting old as compared with “uneasy”, “angry” or “prepared”
  • Those who feel aging is better than expected cite good health (74 percent), wisdom (72 percent) and greater appreciation for friends and family (72 percent) as the top reasons
  • 51 percent of all people surveyed think they look younger than their age, and 40 percent of all people think they are wiser than their age
  • Given a list of lifetime achievements, those 18 to 34 (45 percent) rank having $1 million first, while those over 65 would rather see their grandchild graduate (48 percent)
  • 64 percent of those over 65 are more afraid of losing independence or living with pain or physical limitations than of dying (7 percent)
  • Only 25 percent of those over 65 would want to live with a younger relative if they could no longer care for themselves, despite the fact that 51 percent of those 18 to 65 would accept having a parent live with them
  • More respondents (33 percent) believe that people who live in rural areas age better than those living in urban areas (7 percent)

“Everyone brings a different perspective to the aging process. For many who face enormous health challenges, aging can be a source of dread,” said Andy Carter, President and CEO of the Visiting Nurse Associations of America. “For others who are healthier or managing chronic conditions effectively, it is a positive experience. At the VNAA, we recognize the importance of engaging in this conversation as a way to shape our future programs and services to best serve the needs of all aging Americans.”

Join the Get Old Conversation at GetOld.com

With the support of leading organizations Easter Seals, International Longevity Center at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health, Men’s Health Network, National Alliance for Caregiving, National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship, National Consumers League, National Family Caregivers Association, Patient Advocate Foundation, Society for Women’s Health Research, Visiting Nurse Associations of America and WomenHeart: The National Coalition for Women with Heart Disease, Pfizer is asking people to join the conversation about aging at www.GetOld.com to help add to the ever-growing body of knowledge and insights about this important topic.

GetOld.com is unique in that it is allows people of all ages to discuss aging by sharing and viewing stories, photos, and videos about getting old, and the site provides people the opportunity to vote on how they feel about aging: Angry, Uneasy, Optimistic or Prepared. Current content – which may help address issues from the stress associated with caring for aging family members to the life perspective gained after facing serious illness – includes information from leading experts, partner groups and everyday people who are interested in joining the conversation.

In addition to the site, people can join the Get Old Facebook community at www.facebook.com/GetOld or participate via Twitter at www.twitter.com/GetOld.

About the Gallup & Robinson Research

This research was conducted within the U.S. by independent market research company Gallup & Robinson on behalf of Pfizer from May 3-8, 2012, among 1,017 participants age 18 or older. Sample recruitment matched 2010 Census data for gender, age range, annual household income range, ethnicity and U.S. region.

Pfizer Inc: Working Together for a Healthier World®

At Pfizer (NYSE: PFE), we apply science and our global resources to improve health and well-being at every stage of life. We strive to set the standard for quality, safety and value in the discovery, development and manufacturing of medicines for people and animals. Our diversified global health care portfolio includes human and animal biologic and small molecule medicines and vaccines, as well as nutritional products and many of the world’s best-known consumer products. Every day, Pfizer colleagues work across developed and emerging markets to advance wellness, prevention, treatments and cures that challenge the most feared diseases of our time. Consistent with our responsibility as the world's leading biopharmaceutical company, we also collaborate with health care providers, governments and local communities to support and expand access to reliable, affordable health care around the world. For more than 150 years, Pfizer has worked to make a difference for all who rely on us. To learn more about our commitments, please visit us at www.pfizer.com.

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Get Old Research Fact Sheet
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How Do You Feel About Getting Old? Join the conversation at GetOld.com

How Do You Feel About Getting Old? Join the conversation at GetOld.com

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