On the occasion of International Day for Older Persons on 1st October - as declared by United Nations, to recognise, enable and expand the contributions of older people in their families, communities and societies at large and to raise awareness towards issues of ageing – the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare restated commitment of the government to healthy ageing. It also declared 1st October, 2020 the launch year of ‘Decade of Healthy Ageing’ (2020-2030) wherein many activities will be undertaken throughout the year, aimed at mainstreaming issues related to elderly and to deliberate upon ways to ensure better and effective delivery of services, making full use of convergence mechanisms.
What is Decade of Healthy Ageing? DHA which was endorsed by World Health Assembly in August 2020 is an opportunity to bring together governments, civil societies, international agencies, professionals and private sector for the next 10 years to collaborate and improve lives of older people and their families:
·Healthy ageing is maintaining and developing functional ability that enables well-being in older age
·By the end of 2030, the number of people aged 60 years and older will be 34%, increasing from 1 billion in 2019 to 1.4 billion.
·By 2050, globally, there will be 2.1 million older people.
·The percentage of older people in rural and urban India is 6.6% and 7.8% respectively.
·Ministry affirmed that the broad aims of the DHA will include evolving convergence within various national health programs and also promoting inter-sectoral coordination with other line Departments/Ministries.
·Community based organisations, NGOs and multinational agencies will also be involved for developing an implementation framework for multi-sectoral engagement on healthy aging.
·Discussions/workshops/webinars with experts/academic bodies/professionals will be organised to bring out policy and programmatic responses to highlight the best practices for elder care and exploring effective means of promoting and strengthening the participation of older persons in various aspects of social, cultural, economic and civic and political life.
·The Longitudinal Aging Study in India (LASI) - With well-designed and judicious investments, ageing population can help build-up human, social, economic and environmental capital.
·National Programme for the Health Care for the Elderly (NPHCE) - is aimed to deliver comprehensive, affordable and quality geriatric care services at primary and secondary levels