To describe the current state of the population aged 60 years and older in Colombia and to determine the Active Aging Index (AAI) and assess its domains.
Based on data collected during the national survey of health, well-being, and aging conducted in Colombia in 2015 (known as SABE Colombia 2015), the AAI for Colombia was calculated using the methodology applied in the countries of the European Union, with the same four domains. The methodology was adapted to the data provided by the survey and to the Colombian context.
The AAI for Colombia was 37.4. Older adults in Colombia had a high level of employability, but the largest percentage of jobs was in the informal sector. A small percentage of older adults were active in political groups, associations, or organizations advocating for decisions that will benefit society and the country. The fact that a large majority of older adults in Colombia are able to function adequately presents opportunities to improve their performance in line with the determinants of active aging.
This study is the first real attempt to characterize the state of older adults in Colombia and their possibilities to achieve active aging. Public policies should be adjusted to close the identified gaps and improve the quality of life for older adults by offering opportunities for them to earn adequate pay for a better quality of life. The service-centered view of illness should be shifted to focus more on new approaches that include health promotion and prevention of disability.