Japan best country in Asia for older people to live: Study

Japan is the best country in Asia for older people to live, according to the Global AgeWatch Index report. Japan reports high satisfaction with social connectedness, safety and civic freedom, according to the index which measures the quality of life — using income security, health, personal capability and enabling environment — for people aged 60 and older.

Global AgeWatch Index

Global AgeWatch Index

Bangladesh ranks low overall on the index, at 67. It ranks moderately in the enabling environment domain (41) due to high satisfaction of older people with safety (86%), public transport (69%) and civic freedom (70%), compared with regional averages (68%, 65% and 67% respectively).

It ranks low in the health domain (71) due to low life expectancy at 60 (18) and healthy life expectancy at 60 (13.8), compared to regional averages (19 and 14.8 respectively).

The Global AgeWatch Index 2015 by HelpAge International assessed 96 countries to determine the best places for older adults to live. These countries include more than 90 percent of the world’s population aged 60 and over.

Global AgeWatch Index

Global AgeWatch Index 2015.

Globally ranked 8th, Japan is the only Asian country that figures amongst the top ten countries favourable for growing old.

With aging as a critical societal issue, Japan has prepared well for it. Nursing homes, home helpers, welfare schemes for old, benefits for retirees, universal health insurance and social pensions  are some of the many measures in place in the country that contribute to the enabling environment for its aging population.

Australia is ranked 13 out of 96 countries. Another Asian country Thailand is ranked 34, as the country has revised and upgraded policies on aging in line with the Madrid Plan of Action for Aging.

Vietnam, Philippines and China ranks 41, 50 and 52 respectively on the list of best countries to live in over the age of 60. China has the largest population of older people in the world at 209 million people. The country established National Commission on Aging people that facilitates focus on the growing older population. Pension coverage and health insurance coverage has gone up to 75 percent and 90 percent respectively.

South Korea is ranked 60 out of 96 countries.

Sri Lanka has outperformed its South Asian neighbours at number 46. Nepal is ranked one place above India at 70 due to the government’s social investment.

India is ranked at 71 out of 96 countries. India’s ranks low in income security domain with pension coverage to only 28% of its aging population. With projections stating that the aging population numbers will grow three fold from 100 million to 300 million by 2050, India needs to revise polices on its aging people. The older women in India are more vulnerable as they outlive men with meagre income or no income sources.

Mongolia and Indonesia ate ranked 72 and 74 respectively.

Cambodia is ranked 80. Laos introduced policies on aging in mid-2000s but the country still has lot to do to improve care for older people. It is ranked low at 83.

With no firm policy in place for its growing population, Pakistan is ranked the worst with global rank of 92 out of 96 countries.

There are approximately 901 million people worldwide who are 60 and over and globally Switzerland is ranked the best country to live in if you’re 60 or older.

Copyright: DataLEADS/ Asia News Network