Society is not geared up to meet the needs of an ageing population

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Alzheimers Society-care industry newsA new report by the Ready for Ageing Alliance seeks to dispel the myth that there is a uniform group of older people in the UK, known as the baby boomers (aged 55-70), who benefit at the expense of younger age groups.

The Ready For Ageing Alliance – a group of major national charities interested in our ageing society including Alzheimer’s Society – presents evidence that baby boomers are a diverse group of people and that the term has become a inaccurate shorthand description. One of the few things this group have in common is their chronological age.

Evidence included in the report:

  • Whilst some boomers can expect to live a long time in good health, men in the most deprived parts of the England can expect to live to 52.2 year in good health compared with 70.5 in the least deprived areas. 6.7 million people aged 45-64 have a long standing illness or a disability.
  • Whilst some boomers will retire with good pension provision, almost three in ten of 55-64 year olds in Great Britain do not have any pension savings (nearly 2 million people).

George McNamara, Head of Policy at Alzheimer’s Society said:  “Society is not geared up to meet the needs of an ageing population. By 2021 there will be over one million people living with dementia in the UK. Given the poor levels of care and support that many people with dementia already experience, this is an issue we cannot ignore.

“Baby Boomers may have benefited in some areas but there are clearly huge disparities in lifestyle, including income, wealth and experiences, with many facing significant challenges in later life.  No social or generational group are immune to dementia, and the high cost of care is an increasing worry for many people with dementia and their families. There is an ongoing struggle to access vital care and support, which is having a detrimental impact on their quality of life.

“Regardless of their background it is essential everyone has access to good quality health and social care throughout their life. Generations must work together to support older people today and into the future.”

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