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Older but fitter? Policy challenges of a changing older population

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Louise Rushworth.

What will the population of 2030 be like? How would it be different today, with reference to health and ageing? What evidence is there to support this and how will that affect business and policy issues today?

It is well known that the population of the UK is becoming an older population. Official projections for Cambridgeshire, for example, suggest an increase of 69% in the number of persons aged 65+ from 2011 to 2031, compared with an increase of 19% in the total population; on that projection, persons aged 65+ will increase from 17% to 24% of the county population over those two decades. The problems arising from growth in the older population is a focus of much concern, particularly as regards the implications for funding pensions and the issues of providing medical and social care. But the situation is complicated by changes in how healthy and active people are at any given age. 65-year olds are in general healthier and more active now than in previous generations (which is partly why the government expects them to go on working); if this kind of trend continues, the significance of having an “older population” may change dramatically.

This ‘Policy Fen’ event will consider • the evidence about trends in health and activity of the older population – ‘is there a problem?’ • the implications for both private and public sectors – ‘how does that affect what we do?’ • the possible responses of local government and service providers – in planning, transport, social care and housing – ‘what are we doing / how are we planning to solve the problem?’

Source for population projection


11 am: Registration 11.25am: Introduction to the session and speakers (David Howarth, University of Cambridge) 11.30am: Evidence base: Presentation of the evidence available on what the population might be like in 2030, with particular reference to health, housing, community and transport.

Contributors include: Dr Abhijit C. Bagade, Consultant in Public Health Medicine, NHS Cambridgeshire Alan Fitz, Research Manager Demography, Cambridgeshire County Council. Dr Jane Fleming: The health problems that older people suffer, from reaching upwards to dementia, at what age and what fraction of them. Jane is a Research Associate at the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care (CLAHRC) ( - Ellen Nolte (RAND Europe)

Short presentations of 10 mins each followed by Q&A.

Lunch: There will be a poster / exhibition to stimulate more discussion over lunch. Please email if you would like to exhibit a poster relevant to these topics. Exhibition includes posters from the speakers plus Dial-a-Ride.

1.00pm: Business Angle: What would businesses use the evidence information for? Session will comprise one or two talks at 10 mins each followed by Q&A.

1.30pm: Service provision: How will the authorities and service providers use the evidence to inform housing, health and planning decisions? This is the ‘response’ section to the 1st ‘evidence’ section – ‘how many’ or ‘what is the uncertainty?’ What are the challenges to the future?

Contributors include: - Marion Bailey, Future East: What the current older population would like to see and changes the future generation may want and what might be practical to implement locally. - Lawrence Ashelford (Assistant Director, Planning and Development, Cambridge University Hospitals NHS foundation Trust) - Richard O’Driscoll, Head of Commissioning (Older People), Cambridgeshire County Council: The challenges for future service provision.

Short presentations of 10 mins each followed by Q&A

2pm Sum up and end (David Howarth) 2.15pm End

To attend:

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This talk is part of the Cambridge Network events series.

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