#ElderCareChat 1/16/13 Recap: Eldercare Around the World

By Michelle Seitzer / Posted on 18 January 2013

Find out what eldercare looks like in other countries via the recap of this week's #ElderCareChat conversation.This Wednesday, a lively dialogue among our 36 attendees offered a much broader perspective of senior and caregiving issues than usual: eldercare around the world. In the hour-long conversation, we found that while some countries are unique in their eldercare programs and philosophies, the issues and challenges (limited funding, a shortage of caregivers, a lack of respect for elders) were quite universal.

The goal of this week’s chat — as always — was to learn from each other, but more specifically, to learn from the (good and bad) examples of other countries. These significant statistics from a HelpAge International (@helpage) report provided the foundation for this important discussion:

“Around the world, 2 persons celebrate their 60th birthday every second – an annual total of almost 58 million 60th birthdays. Currently 1 in 9 persons in the world are aged 60 years & up. This is projected to increase to 1 in 5 by 2050.”

Those are numbers that can’t be ignored. Aging may not have been a hot topic a decade ago, but it’s finally getting the attention it needs (though there is much work to be done). I’m so pleased and proud that our #ElderCareChat community is on the cutting edge of these important conversations.

The following questions guided this week’s chat:

Q1. In your opinion, what country has the best elder care system & why?
Q2: What countries are doing innovative things in elder care, or have the best attitude about caring for seniors?
Q3: In the Netherlands, an Alzheimer’s care complex attempts to break from the nursing home norm. Are we doing the same here?
Q4: India is breaking w/ tradition & developing communities that look like our assisted living homes. Good move?
Q5: In China, US provider Emeritus Senior Living opened assisted living in Shanghai with an “Eastern twist.” Good move?
Q6: In the UK, the govn’t is proposing state pension reform, seeking a “simpler, fairer system.” Do we need that here too?
Q7: In many poor countries, grandparents are primary caregivers for multiple family members. How should we support them?
Q8: Hebron has a grandparents’ house, a day center 4 seniors 2 get info, socialize, or access basic healthcare. Discuss.
Q9: What attitudes, philosophies & programs should other countries adopt from us and vice versa?


Check out these highlights:

To read more about eldercare around the world, check out this blog channel. Review all the fantastic ideas shared during the chat here, via the full transcript (thanks to @ctffox of The Fox Group for furnishing this service). Analytics are available too; click here for the “chat stats.”

Don’t miss our next chat: Wednesday, February 6th at 1pm ET. Please note that we meet only on the 1st and 3rd Wednesday of each month, so there are no more chats scheduled for the month of January. Anyone who is interested in and passionate about eldercare issues can join our chat — anytime. Prior participation is not required, nor is there a need to stay for the full hour.

If the “real-time” frame doesn’t sync with your schedule, or if you feel that your question or idea requires well beyond 140 characters, start a discussion thread on our LinkedIn page or use the #eldercarechat hashtag. The LinkedIn group is also a great place to continue previous discussions, connect with those who share similar interests, or talk about the services you — or the company you represent — have to offer.


There are 2 Comments about this post

  1. Kaye Swain says,

    Very interesting topic – and a great challenge that so many of us are involved in! I had hoped to attend but caregiving needs kept me away from the computer that day :) Have a lovely week, and again – CONGRATS on your nominations!!!!


    on 24 January 2013 / 1:42 PM

  2. Thanks, Kaye! It was a very interesting discussion and there were so many great ideas shared. We missed you; I’m sure you would have had wonderful insights to offer! Thanks for the comment and for the congrats! :)


    on 28 January 2013 / 9:44 AM


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