Study: Over 142 million people aged 60 years are unable to meet their basic daily needs

Study: Over 142 million people aged 60 years are unable to meet their basic daily needs

At least 14% of all people aged 60 years and over ̶ more than 142 million people ̶ are currently unable to meet all their basic daily needs according to the Baseline report for the Decade of Healthy Ageing, released by the World Health Organization today.

The Baseline report brings together data available for measuring healthy ageing, defined by WHO as “the process of developing and maintaining the functional ability that enables well-being in older age.” Optimizing “functional ability” is the goal of the Decade of Healthy Ageing, which begins in 2021 and addresses five interrelated abilities that all older people should enjoy: the ability to meet basic needs; to continue to learn and make decisions; to be mobile; to build and maintain relationships; and to contribute to society.

The Baseline report presents the experience of countries which have been successful in starting healthy ageing initiatives in each of these areas, such as Ireland, Mexico and Viet Nam. It also stresses that older adults must be engaged throughout.

The report is intended for people working in government, academia, civil society and the private sector who make decisions that impact people’s ability to live well in older age.

“Humans now live longer than at any time in history. But adding more years to life can be a mixed blessing if it is not accompanied by adding more life to years,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General.

“The Baseline Report for the Decade of Healthy Ageing has the potential to transform the way policy-makers and multiple service-providers engage with older adults. We have to work together, to foster the abilities and well-being of our older generations, who continue to give us so much.”

Source: News Medical