According to India Ageing Report- 2017 by United Nations Population’s Fund, it is estimated that India’s elderly population (>60 years) will reach 300 million in 2050 making up 20% of the population. On one hand this is a direct reflection of the positive strides made by the Indian healthcare sector, on the other hand it also poses challenges of maintaining, the health, well-being and functional ability of the ageing population through enabling environments.
Concerns of old age go well beyond health and encompasses other aspects of ageism such as income insecurity, living arrangement, feeling of redundancy and issues in inter-personal relationships. These, among others, were brought up at Confederation of Indian Industry’s 1st Annual Senior Care Conclave held on 1st November, 2018 in New Delhi organised in collaboration with ASLI.
Speaking at the Conclave Anupriya Singh Patel, Minister of State, Health and Family Welfare said that the National Programme for Healthcare of the Elderly (NPHCE) launched in the year 2010-11 in the 11th Plan Period has initiated provisions for preventive and promotive care, human resource development, rehabilitative services by establishing dedicated geriatric care departments in Community Health Centers and Sub-Centers, Super Specialised Institutions and District Hospitals.
“With increasing awareness of the special needs of this age group, demands of services for the elderly is on the rise thus presenting business opportunities for insurance, housing, health and entrepreneurs”, mutually agreed upon by Ankur Gupta, Chairman, CII Taskforce on Senior Care and Mansoor Dalal, Founder and Chairman, ASLI.
“CII has already embarked on a mission of charting new areas of work and deliberation in the area of senior care and is looking forward to engaging in policy advocacy and enhancing human capital for legal and regulatory framework.”, added Neerja Bhattia, Executive Director, CII
The event saw the gathering of relevant stakeholders from senior living and home care business, senior products, NGOs and entrepreneurs. Report titled, “Igniting Potential in Senior Care Services” was released at the event. It emphasised the need to identify Senior Care as a distinct sector so that interventions in provision of financial benefits, human resource development, designing legislative and policy framework and capital investment can be focused to the needs of the specific stakeholders. The report delineated the roles of the government, private sector and research institutions with respect to different aspects of geriatric care thus implying that a multi-sectoral approach is required.
An environment that addresses the social, psychological, emotional , financial and physical needs of the elderly is important to build an active ageing population.