This SAPEA report looks into the future of ageing. It reviews the best evidence available on what public policies might help EU countries to achieve inclusive, fair and sustainable health and social care in the future.
The authors, leading scientists nominated by academies across Europe, conclude that the ageing process needs to be transformed – and that the best way to improve life outcomes in old age is to anticipate and tackle them in youth and middle age.
The report further concludes that:
- Ageing in the future will take place in a very different context from the past and will be profoundly affected by phenomena such as climate change, air pollution and antibiotic resistance, as well as ongoing social changes. Policies will only be successful if they are able to accommodate these changes.
- Age-friendly communities enable older people to feel secure and to go about their daily life comfortably. Architects, urban planners, experts in mobility and ergonomics, social care experts and geriatricians must cooperate to make age-friendly communities the norm.
- Technology, including wearable and assistive devices and the advent of AI, is already changing the experience of ageing, and could transform it if barriers of acceptance and practicality can be overcome.