Prof. Sarah Harper - Oxford Institute of Population Ageing, Oxford University. Oxford, , GB

Prof. Sarah Harper Prof. Sarah Harper

Director and Professor of Gerontology | Oxford Institute of Population Ageing, Oxford University

Oxford, GB

Sarah trained as an ethnographer and her early research focused on migration and the social implications of demographic change

We'll live longer but suffer more ill-health by 2035, says study

We'll live longer but suffer more ill-health by 2035, says study 2018-02-12
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Prof. Marie Beaulieu Prof. Denise Eldemire-Shearer Prof. Sarah Harper Dr. Louise Plouffe

People are living longer, but are they living healthier? According to a Newcastle University study, that answer is no. The number of people living with chronic medical conditions, in many cases more than one (multimorbidity), is set to climb to unprecedented numbers by 2035 as the population continues to age.

Those with multimorbidity, including cancer, diabetes, dementia and depression, require expanded access to health and long-term care services, putting an increasing strain on already overwhelmed healthcare systems, and on informal caregivers, most often family or friends, tasked with filling in healthcare service gaps.

Increasing multimorbidity highlights the need for increased preventive strategies to combat diseases of ageing and exposes the misconception that living longer is the end goal, when in fact, living longer necessitates living healthier to maintain sustainable, publicly-funded health and social care systems.

This research shows that addressing the possibility of multimorbidity before it occurs could help avert a long-lasting healthcare crisis, that has preventive possibilities through continual education and strategizing on disease-prevention.

The many projects of the International Federation on Ageing (IFA) prioritize healthy ageing as integral to facilitating older people's continued contributions to both the public and private spheres.

To learn more about this study, multimorbidity and its affect on people, governments and health care systems, contact an expert through the IFA Expert Center to learn more about healthy ageing.


We'll live longer but suffer more ill-health by 2035, says study

Number of old people suffering from four medical conditions to double in less than 20 years, researchers claim