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    • Dec 16, 2018

    Debate emerges over linking NZ Super age to health expectancy

    The New Zealand Initiative and the retirement commissioner have called for the age at which people get NZ Super to be linked to health expectancy. But academics believe a more precise working health expectancy measure may be needed if such a link is to be established. Using disability-free life years data for setting the age at which people qualified for NZ Super would need to be studied with a view to working out whether it would be fair, including for population subsets like Māori and Pasifika. The health expectancy data was developed in order to help politicians and health bureaucrats to make better healthcare decisions. While the decision on when to start paying people NZ Super is a resource allocation decision, it's not the kind of resource allocation decision the ministry had in mind. more info

    • Dec 14, 2018

    South Korea to guarantee national pension payment

    South Korea announced four different proposals for reforming the NPS that center on strengthening support for beneficiaries going forward amid concerns over fund shortfalls. The Ministry of Health and Welfare announced the differing drafts after President Moon Jae-in called for an overhaul of the ministry's draft on reforming the national pension scheme in a way that better reflects public opinion. According to the first proposal, the government would maintain the current scheme with an income replacement rate set at 40% and insurance premiums at 9%. The proposal would increase the basic pension to roughly $265 per month in 2021. The second draft would raise basic pension to about $354 in 2022, without changing the current insurance premiums and income replacement rate. The ministry said the third option would raise insurance premiums to 12% in order to achieve the pension's income replacement rate of 45%, with total pension provided reaching over $810. According to the fourth plan, the pension's income replacement rate would be increased to 50%, with insurance premiums set at 13% and total pension paid to people at about $858 per month more info

    • Dec 14, 2018

    Elderly grandmothers star in fashion show to promote Chinese longevity city

    Ten elderly grandmothers took to the runway in a fashion show designed to promote one of China's cities of longevity. The participants, aged from 81 to 105, each modeled customized dresses and angel wings decorated with flowers, angels and stars. The event was organized by the Seniors Sports Association of Gongzhuang and held in Boluo County, located in south China's Guangdong Province. The county's average life expectancy is 79 - four years higher than the national figure and eight above the global figure. According to 2014 government statistics, there were 10 centenarians for every 100,000 of Boluo's 1.2 million people. more info

    • Dec 13, 2018

    Report says 4.3 million elderly people 'at risk of not being cared for'

    Millions of frail elderly people are at risk at going without the support they need as local authorities struggle to meet rising demand for social care, a report warned. Research found more than 4.3 million people in the U.K. aged over 75 are at risk of not being properly cared for because of where they live. One in five local authority areas of the U.K. said they had enough provision for all types of elderly care, according to The Coram Family and Childcare Trust's Older People's Care Survey. Overall, a third of councils expected the situation to worsen in the coming year. The report said no local authorities in Inner London or Northern Ireland had enough care to meet demand, while 44% did in the East Midlands and the North East. Only 1% of local authorities expected an improvement. The Department of Health and Social Care said councils had been given access to $4.5 billion in extra social care funding this year, and further plans to ease the crisis would be published in a forthcoming social care Green Paper. more info

    • Dec 13, 2018

    Preventing heart disease will have greatest impact on reducing disparities in life expectancy, report finds

    No single cause can be found for the slowdown in life expectancy improvement seen in the U.K., a report from Public Health England (PHE) has concluded. It doesn't rule out the belt-tightening in health and social care that began in 2011 and has coincided with higher mortality and a life expectancy slowdown, but neither does it give this the prominence accorded by some commentators. The report concludes slowing improvements in heart disease and stroke, high winter mortality from flu in several recent years, the growth of dementia as a recorded cause of death and more deaths from drug misuse among younger people have all played a part. more info

    • Dec 12, 2018

    Global report finds older people denied right to health, at risk of being left behind in universal care push

    HelpAge International and AARP launched Global AgeWatch Insights 2018, a report that analyses older people's right to health in the context of current demographic, epidemiological and health systems transitions. In 2018, the global population aged 60 and over surpassed one billion, and it continues to rise in almost all countries. This is contributing to a shift towards non-communicable diseases (NCDs). Of the 41 million annual deaths caused by non-communicable diseases globally, 32 million occur in low and middle-income countries, which is changing the demands being placed on health systems. Key findings include:

    • Data systems designed to inform the planning and delivery of health services systematically exclude older people;
    • Older people are prevented from accessing health services by cost, lack of transport, discrimination and inadequate training of health workers; and
    • Although women are living longer, they live more years in poor health, and with disability, depression and dementia.
    more info

    • Dec 12, 2018

    Aging in Latin America is challenging the sustainability of public pension, health care systems

    Latin America, while still comparatively young, is aging fast. Policymakers will need to ensure adequate benefits for the rising share of older people by supporting formal employment and gradually reforming pension and healthcare systems. Rising living standards and better access to quality health care have increased the life expectancy of Latin Americans to close to 75 years. Chileans and Costa Ricans can expect to live more than 80 years, slightly longer than U.S. residents. The combination of fewer children and older adults is putting an end to the demographic dividend that Latin America has been enjoying since the 1970s. more info

    • Dec 11, 2018

    CPSI: One-third of seniors at risk due to interactions from inappropriate medications

    The Canadian Patient Safety Institute (CPSI) says two-thirds of seniors take at least five different prescribed medications. It also contends that about half that number of seniors are taking at least one potentially inappropriate medication, putting them at risk of injury or hospitalization. Furthermore, the CPSI states that half of all medications are taken incorrectly. To call attention to the issue of inappropriate drug prescribing, the institute submitted a petition to Parliament calling on MPs to legislate plain-language labelling on medications. more info

    • Dec 11, 2018

    Australians enjoy long lives despite high cancer risk, obesity rates: report

    Australians have a long life despite having the highest rate of cancer among members of the OECD, according to an analysis. A comparison tool, released by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW), helps compare key health indicators of OECD member nations. It revealed Australia has the second-highest cancer rate within the OECD, behind only Denmark, and the highest rate for men. However, despite the high incidence of cancer, Australia's life expectancy was still above the OECD average. In addition to cancer, Australia also performed poorly in overweight and obesity rates, with 63% of the population considered overweight or obese compared to the OECD average of 58%. According to the tool, Australia's long life expectancy can be attributed to its strong health care system. more info

    • Dec 10, 2018

    Scottish architects help bring assisted living to Kenya

    The delivery of Kenya's first assisted-living complex has been overseen by Scottish architecture practice Framed Estate. Superior Homes Kenya developed the Fadhili Care at Greenpark Estate on the outskirts of Nairobi to help older Kenyans live in more comfortable conditions and closer to their families. The 41 homes on what is thought to be Kenya's first assisted-living estate have been designed to ensure the security, safety and well-being of its residents with a 24-hour emergency call and nurse services for its residents. more info


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