ESEnf MORE THAN ONE MILLION TWO HUNDRED THOUSAND AND ELDERLY LIVING ALONE OR IN COMPANY OF OTHER ELDERLY

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1 ESEnf MORE THAN ONE MILLION TWO HUNDRED THOUSAND AND ELDERLY LIVING ALONE OR IN COMPANY OF OTHER ELDERLY Fernandes, Ana Rita; Santos, Emílio; Duarte, Susana; Apostolo, João; Almeida,. 2012

2 MORE THAN ONE MILLION TWO HUNDRED THOUSAND AND ELDERLY LIVING ALONE OR IN COMPANY OF OTHER ELDERLY Aging is a concept that encompasses a double meaning as an expression of the senescence time course of biological aging and the progress of chronological time (Henrard, 1997). Currently, the Portuguese society is aging since the renewal of population and lower than the elderly population. This is a very delicate issue because we can not respond to these situations. Improving the quality of life provides the Portuguese population living longer, since they have better access to health services, more information on healthy eating, the contribution of regular exercise, innovative technologies to health as well as transmission information, and other relevant aspects. The World Health Organisation (WHO) argues that countries can cope with aging, since governments and civil society efforts in applying policies and programs that improve the health, social participation and safety of citizens at all stages of life. Given all these considerations, perhaps the one most fears is that the rapid aging of the population produces an explosion in health care and Social Security costs that escape any control. It appears then the global characterization of the Portuguese population according to age groups to get a view more focused and targeted. To this end, we used the method of printing horizontal bars. 1

3 Figure 1: Resident population by age group, according to the provisional 2011 census. 2

4 Figure 2: Age Pyramid of the Portuguese population, Thus, analyzing the data provided by the National Institute of Statistics, for the year 2010 the crude death rate is lower than the crude birth rate, being respectively 10 and 9.5. Given this information we can conclude that in the same year the death rate was higher than 0.5 (Figure 3 and 4). 3

5 Figure 3: Crude death rate Figure 4: Crude birth rate in The National Statistics Institute (INE) provides results of the 2011 Census on population aged 65 years and older who live in housing units, alone or in exclusive company of other elderly (up to parish). 4

6 The elderly population aged 65 years or older, residing in Portugal is million people, representing about 19% of the population total1. In the last decade the number of seniors grew about 19%. About a third of the elderly is in the North, followed by the Central and Lisbon. Nationally, the distribution of the population aged 65 years shows a pattern similar to that of the resident population. Thus, in the north is 31% of the total elderly population, followed by the Central and Lisbon, both with weights close to 26%. In the Alentejo, Algarve, Madeira and the Azores are, respectively 9.1%, 4.4%, 2% and 1.6% of elderly residents. Figure 5: Distribution of resident population and population aged 65 years or more, by NUTS II in Lisbon and Alentejo have the highest percentage of elderly living alone. It is the regions of Lisbon (22%), Alentejo (22%) and Algarve (21%) that occur the highest percentages of elderly people living alone. The lowest percentages are in the North and the Azores, with 17% each. Figure 6: Percentage of elderly living alone or only with people 65 years or more, by NUTS II in

7 Thus the World Health Organisation (WHO) defines active aging as "a process that allows the optimization of opportunities for physical well-being, mental and social health throughout life, in order to extend healthy life expectancy, the productivity and quality of life in old age "(1999, sp). Concurrently, the National Programme for Health of Older Persons (2006) in their intervention strategies points to the "Promotion of active aging." As can be seen through the analysis of the graphs above, the number of elderly living alone is in constant increase, 19.6% of the elderly population of our country lies only in his home and according to this indicator shows that the hope average life expectancy at birth is 79.2 years in 2010 verifying a significant increase for the year 2006 when he presented himself as years (Figure 7 and 8). 6

8 Figure 7: Life expectancy at birth, Figure 8: Life expectancy at birth,

9 Moreover, the National Programme for Health of Older Persons (2006) is preset as Meta Enabling citizens to gain in years of life with independence. This goal is based on three fundamental pillars: Promotion of active aging, lifelong learning; Increased appropriateness of health care to the specific needs of older people; Promotion and development of intersectoral enabling environments for autonomy and independence of older people. In short, the aging population that resides only in the home or with people of similar age should be a focus of attention since it is necessary to assess their state of independence to perform Activities of Daily Living (ADLs), so that you could implement the measures proposed in the National Health Program for Older Persons (2006).. BIBLIOGRAPHY DIRECÇÃO-GERAL DA SAÚDE. Programa Nacional para a Saúde das Pessoas Idosas. [Em linha]. DGS, [Consult. 12 Abr. 2012]. Disponível em WWW: <URL: INE - Instituto Nacional de Estatística. [Em linha]. [Consult. 12 Abr. 2012]. Disponível em WWW: <URL: MINISTÉRIO DA SAÚDE. Portal da Saúde. Recomendações para um envelhecer com qualidade. [Em linha]. MS, [Consult. 12 Abr. 2012]. Disponível em WWW: <URL: 8

10 ORGANIZAÇÃO MUNDIAL DA SAÚDE (OMS). Active Ageing- A Policy Framework. [Em linha]. [Consult. 12 Abr. 2012]. Disponível em WWW: <URL: 9

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