A new report by the United Nations Population Fund, portrait of global aging, illustrates the rapid rate at which the elderly population is growing worldwide. With such rapid growth, we are presented with the question of how we will care for the elderly.
It’s true that people are living longer than ever. Most of us have heard that before. But many mistakenly attribute this increased longevity to technological advancement and assume most people living longer reside in the US or other wealthy countries. Not so. In fact, developing countries are actually seeing the fastest growth in their aging populations. In Africa, Asia and other regions, 2 in 3 people are 60 or older. And by 2050, the United Nations report estimates that 280 million people in developing countries will be 80 or older. The elderly population in developed countries is expected to be less than half of this, at only 122 million.