A Growing Population

Population aging is a global phenomenon with proportions of older adults rapidly increasing. According to the recent report, there are over 700 million older adults over the age of 65 years. The number of older adults in the world is projected to double to 1.5 billion by the year 2050. In addition, the proportion of older adults has increased from about 6% in 1990, to 9% in 2019, projected to 16% by 2050.

This demographic imperative is further illustrated by longer life expectancy and improved survival from medical comorbidities. Globally, a person aged 65 years in 2015-2020 could expect to live, on average, 17 more years. By 2050, they will live 19 more years. Moreover, number of older adults relative to person aged 20-64 years, is projected to more than double in many parts of the world.

With this trend, families, governments, and private organizations are actively seeking answers to questions related to health care, housing, social security, work and retirement, caregiving as well as the burden of disease and disability. Common geriatric syndromes, such as dementia, fall, incontinence, delirium, etc, poses enormous burdens on older adults, families, communities and societies. However, despite decades of research, there are scant evidence on successful intervention and prevention strategies to improve health and wellbeing.

At Institute for Population Health Sciences, we aim to collaboratively work with national and international experts to tackle broader upstream factors such as social and culture factors that may influence broader downstream consequences. With improved understanding of more distal factors that may both predispose and precipitate potential negative outcomes, we may begin to devise effective intervention and prevention strategies.