Devising Housing solutions for Asia’s aging population
Asia is facing an ageing crisis. Advancements in healthcare provisions coupled with rising wealth levels in the region, have increased life expectancy, just as birth rates, in some Asian countries have fallen to record lows. The result is that the region’s senior (aged 65 and above) population will nearly triple by 2050 to 945 million. The number of people aged 75 and above (needing some sort of assistance in their daily lives) will jump from 137 million to 437 million over the same period.
This massive demographic shift raises questions about how already strained health and pension systems can be reengineered to cope with the needs of rapidly ageing populations. Less discussed, but no less important, are the implications for housing. Traditionally, in many Asian societies, the elderly have resided with their children, but trends like smaller families and rising divorce rates have challenged this practice. More infrastructure will need to be created for the rising number of seniors who will be residing independently and to cater for those in need of different degrees of daily assistance and medical care.