How Different Countries Treat Their Elderly

The quality of life for the elderly cannot be judged solely on the basis of medical facilities available to them. Over the years, many countries have released that physical and mental health are both equally important. The rising number of adult (especially senior) depression cases makes healthcare providers worry about the state of elderly care.

However, different countries in the world have different ways of caring for the elder. We investigated this further with Acorn Stairlifts.

Canada

The Canadian healthcare system for the elderly is largely dependent on informal care by children of the ageing individual. Nurses are often called for help but they are also over-worked due to lack of trained workforce. Canadian children with ageing parents could take 450 hours off work every year.

Italy

In Italy, the seniors spend most of their time at home, with institutions intervening only if someone doesn’t have a family to care for them. Only 2% of the senior population uses care home services. However, home based care is availed by 5% seniors.

UK

The most popular elderly care option in the UK is staggered care. Individuals who struggle with cooking, cleaning and washing are tended to by trained care givers at home.

Another good option is special elderly flat complex. Seniors can cohabit with others and even socialize with others in community rooms. Trained caregivers and wardens are also available. 24×7 care and intensive care is available at nursing homes.

Many seniors get help in paying for these services. At home care could be free for people aged 75 or over in Northern Ireland. In Scotland, people aged 65 and over get free personal care.

Belgium

They have a public system for senior care, even though families are the primary caregivers. Belgians prefer to keep their elderly at home and nursing homes are often always the last resort. Staggered system of community apartments called service flats are available for the elderly. They also have kangaroo housing schemes where the elderly live with immigrant families who care for them.

Germany

Care homes and dedicated senior housing options are available in Germany. However, many residents still prefer home care, which could be provided by trained care givers. Informal care by family is also available. Multigenerational facilities are a unique addition to their system as they help seniors spend time with kindergarten kids or in day cares, interacting with the young.

USA

The most popular care option for US residents is a nursing home. These places come with round the clock care and are equipped with several medical facilities for the elderly. These nursing homes are privatized institutions but residents can get about 61% of the payments made by insurance providers.

The concept of informal care at home isn’t very popular in the US. Even though 90% of the seniors suggest that they prefer to live in their own homes instead of nursing homes, only 4% of them move to a relative’s house. Children could be spending anywhere $7,000-$14,000 to care for a parent.

Unlike the US, most countries focus on providing home based care to their elderly and provide several publicly funded care home options to their elderly as well. This helps in keeping the seniors physically and emotionally healthy.