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Israeli senior citizens in bad physical condition (archives) Photo: CD Bank
Israeli senior citizens in bad physical condition (archives) Photo: CD Bank

EU study: It's tough being old in Israel

They're lonelier, sadder and suffer from more chronic diseases than fellow Europeans. Israel's elderly citizens are much less satisfied with life, survey shows

Daniel Edelson
Published: 12.26.11, 13:52 / Israel Culture

Israel's elderly citizens work more years than their fellow Europeans, but find it more difficult to make ends meet. They also suffer from more illnesses, are lonelier and are much less satisfied with life in general, according to a European survey which looked into the lives of people over the age of 65 in 20 countries.


The Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE), funded by the European Union, compared figures from countries across the continent and the Mediterranean Basin.


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Israel came in second from the bottom in senior citizens' life satisfaction level, Italy being the only country where the situation is worse.


The survey ranked Israel third among European countries in feelings of sadness among elderly citizens, and second (again after Italy) in feelings of loneliness and depression.


The physical condition of Israel's senior citizens is also grim compared to Europe: Seventy-five percent of the survey's Israeli respondents said they suffer from at least two chronic diseases – the highest figure among all countries.


The survey's data in Israel were compiled by the Israel Gerontological Data Center at Tel Aviv University.


And who is most satisfied with life in Europe? Unsurprisingly, elderly citizens in Denmark, Sweden and Switzerland are less lonely, sad, depressed and ill than their fellow Europeans.



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