To map out the financial, physical and social health of senior citizens in Singapore, then-Ministry of Community Development, Youth and Sports* (MCYS) commissioned the National Survey of Senior Citizens (NSSC) 2011. The NSSC, which has been conducted periodically since 1983, serves to monitor and track changes in the situation and attitudes of the resident population aged 55 and older. The data collected also contribute to policy-making and programme planning processes.
The survey was conducted at an important time when the first baby boomers (born between 1947–1964) began reaching retirement age, with those born in 1947 reaching 62 earlier in 2009. In the following two decades, Singapore will see an increase in the number of baby boomers joining the ranks of the ―aged‖ or elderly population, defined as those aged 65 and older.
A total of 10,000 households with at least one household member aged 55 or older were surveyed during this period. Of this, 15 per cent of these households were found to be ineligible as the household did not contain any member aged 55 or older. From this, 5,000 senior citizens were successfully interviewed. This gave a response rate of approximately 65 per cent. This is comparable to the response rate of approximately 64 per cent reported for the 2005 edition of the survey.
*MCYS has been restructured to form the current Ministry of Social and Family Development on 1 November 2012.