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Dutch centenarians on the march

13 years, 10 months ago

1443  0
Posted on Jul 19, 2005, 10 a.m. By Bill Freeman

AMSTERDAM — The number of Dutch people aged 100 or older is rising fast, according to new figures from the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS).

There were 1,381 centenarians in the Netherlands on 1 January and another 91 have joined their ranks since then. Half a century ago only 40 Dutch people were aged 100 or older.

The CBS said the increase has been caused by the declien in the chance of dying in middle age or "young old age", particularly among women.

Only one in six of the centenarians is male and average age achieved by 100 plusers has remained stable for a century at 102.1 years.

For a long time the Netherlands led its European neighbours in terms of the

numbers of people living to 100 years to more. But the increase in the last decade in the risk of death for elderly people has reduced this to just below the European average.

France has the highest number of citizens aged 100 or older and holds the all-time record for the oldest person — 122 122 years.

On Wednesday, Holland's Henny van Andel-Schipper from Hoogeveen will turn 115. She has held the title as the oldest living person in the world since may 2004.

She became the oldest person ever in the Netherlands on 26 September 2003 when she was 113 years and 89 days.

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