News Release

Thursday, August 2, 2007

New NIA Online Publication Features Health and Retirement Study

A comprehensive new publication, Growing Older in America: The Health & Retirement Study, is now available online from the National Institute on Aging (NIA), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). This compendium offers a view of older Americans’ health, work and economic status, as well as retirement and family lives. It is based on analyses of data from the Health and Retirement Study (HRS), a national survey of Americans over age 50.

The online publication is intended to familiarize policymakers, researchers, health and retirement experts, the news media and others with the HRS. A major goal of the study, which is unique in providing data on the combined health and economic conditions of older Americans over time, is to help address the scientific and policy challenges posed by the nation’s rapidly aging population.

Growing Older in America: The Health & Retirement Study describes the survey’s development and offers a snapshot of diverse research findings. More than 65 colorful figures and tables illustrate the text. PDF and plain-text editions of Growing Older in America: The Health & Retirement Study can be accessed at

Launched in 1992, the HRS is sponsored by the NIA under a cooperative agreement with the University of Michigan’s Institute for Social Research. The study follows more than 20,000 men and women at two-year intervals, providing data from pre-retirement to advanced age to understand the dynamic nature of health, well-being, work and social circumstances in later life.

Funded primarily by the NIA, the HRS has received significant support from other federal agencies, including the Social Security Administration.

The NIA leads the federal effort supporting and conducting research on aging and the medical, social and behavioral issues of older people. For more information on research and aging, go to Publications on research and on a variety of topics of interest on health and aging can be viewed and ordered by visiting the NIA Web site or can be ordered by calling toll-free 1-800-222-2225.

About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH, the nation's medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit

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