Rationing by frailty

In January of this year the journal Age and Ageing published a commentary piece with the title Rationing by frailty during the COVID-19 pandemic.  It discusses the guidance published by NICE in March 2020 on assessing older patients for their suitability for admission to critical care (i.e. artificial organ support). Read more

The rhetoric of burden and boomer

There is something decidedly discriminatory when a certain group of a population is referred to as a burden, with the implicit understanding that the rest of the unburdensome population has to bear this burden. And there is something derisory when a certain group of a population is referred to as boomers, with all the implicit accompaniments of wealth, power and selfishness, such as was suggested in Barbara Ellen’s piece in the Observer recently. Read more

Covid is not an inter-generational conflict

As the early days of 2020 passed with most of us hoping for the first signs of spring to drive away the greyness of a long winter, infections from a mysterious virus rose shockingly. The infections turned into deaths, deaths on a grand scale. Lockdowns locked us down. And the deaths continued. Read more

What lessons have we learnt to help mitigate a second wave of COVID-19?

As we went into lockdown in March 2020 we were very much in the dark as to the behaviour of the virus and how it would affect different parts of our population. Today, as we consider action in the light of a second rise in infections, we are much better informed. Read more

A new approach to fertility projections

In 2018 the research group behind the Global Burden of Disease (GBD) studies published a set of life expectancy projections which made use of an innovative approach to projecting future trends in life expectancy.  The same group has now published (in July) a set of global population projections which are of interest for the same reason, only in this instance the innovation bears on their projections for future trends in fertility. Read more

Canadians Aging in Place

As Canada celebrates its 153rd birthday this July 1, the population of aging Canadians continues to expand with more than 6.5 million people aged 65 and older and approximately 7% of these individuals living in nursing homes or other assisted care facilities. With an increasing population of older adults, it is expected that the demand for care facilities will also increase significantly. Read more

Will a rethink on offices benefit older workers?

As the great pandemic of 2020 infiltrates every corner of our lives, there is one place perhaps more than any other that has been affected. This is the office, the defining building type of the 20th century whose very existence is now called into question. Offices have been out of reach during the lockdown and must adopt strict new hygiene and social distancing rules if companies are to get back in business. Read more

Reaching older people in a crisis: learning from experience?

In a recent policy brief on Coronavirus and ageing, the UN’s Department of Economic and Social Affairs declared that the virus mean that the world was grappling with “an unparalleled health crisis.” While on a global level this is undoubtedly true, the fact that in low-income countries large-scale health emergencies are endemic is easily obscured. Read more

Leveraging design expertise for an ageing society

Two uncontested facts about the UK: first, we have an ageing population that can be especially vulnerable in a public health crisis; second, we have one of the world’s largest and most advanced design sectors, with a hard-won global reputation for crafting brilliant solutions. One might have been forgiven for thinking that the needs of the former could be easily met by the creativity and expertise of the latter. But despite lots of effort and good intentions, this has not turned out to be the case. Read more