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What are the results “impact” of an Ageing population on the west?

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What are the results & impact of an Ageing population on the west?

What are the results & impact of an Ageing population on the west?
As the ageing population continues to grow rapidly in the west, there is concern regarding its socioeconomic impact. Further, a higher population of older persons means that governments in the West spend more on their older citizens. As such, governments in the west are now facing challenges in terms of providing adequate public services. On the other hand, the impact on the economy is adverse due to the decline of an experienced workforce. Socially, older people need more care and this tends to impact negatively on the significant others, and particularly, the younger generations (Sakaguchi, 2015). This paper explores some of the results of an ageing population that include dependency, increased government spending and a decrease of human capital.
The dependency of senior citizens on the younger generation

Ageing tends to affect the mental and physical capabilities of many people and this means they need help to do most things in later years of life. This is a role that is often taken by adult children who nowadays spend most of their time taking care of their older parents. As such, they have limited time to engage in other economic activities that can improve their leaving standards. For instance, adult children may put their career on hold in order to take care of their ageing parents. This in turn impacts negatively on the economic because as the older generation leaves the workplace, there tends to be a shortage of replacement (Prettner, 2013).

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In addition, the dependency of senior citizens on the younger generation also has psychological effects in the sense that the younger people may fail to cope with the needs of their older parents. As such, the stress that comes with taking care of old parents may contribute to social ills such as domestic violence or drug and alcohol abuse. In addition, the dependency of senior citizens on the younger generation can also have an effect on their social life. This is because, they spend most of their time taking care of their old parents with little, or no time to interact with their peers (Prettner, 2013).
Ageing population increases the government spending on Health care and pensions
As the population of the ageing increases in the West, governments are also forced to spend more on their senior citizens as a way of improving their wellbeing. For instance, due to increase in the ageing population, governments in the west have to channel more funds to health care and pension schemes created for workers who have retired from their jobs. However, as more funds are channelled to cater for the needs of the senior citizens, other public services are stretched due to lack of sufficient funds (Dittrich & Stara, 2013).
Old age comes with numerous challenges that include, for instance, the decline of health. As such, the wellbeing of senior citizens is dependent on seeking regular medical attention to minimise the health complications associated with old age. On the other hand, those in retirement still need a means to support their livelihoods. However, with more people reaching the retirement age, the wage bill may be higher for retirees compared to the working population. As such, the governments in the West may be forced to reduced incentives for their workforce in order to meet the demands a high population of retirees who depend on pension funds for their survival (Felix & Watkins, 2013).
Ageing population decreases the workforce of the economy
In any country, human capital is critical in terms of driving economic growth and development; however, the lack of human capital impacts negatively on the economy. Due to the demographic changes evident in the west where there are more senior citizens than younger people, concerns are growing regarding the impact of more senior citizens (baby boomers) retiring from work. In essence, a higher population of old people in the workplace environment with a few, or no younger people to replace them pose a challenge for governments in the west where the birth rate in recent times has reduced significantly.
As such, there is a growing concern regarding the decline of the working population and impact on the economy in general (Sakaguchi, 2015). In addition, as old people retire from work in masses, this may impact negatively on the transition at workplace since there will be a few, or no experienced workforce to assist the new graduates absorbed into the job market. As a result, an increase of inexperienced workforce can derail the economic gains, for instance, of the baby boomers. In addition, a decrease in the workforce due to the increase of the ageing population may force governments to solicit for the services of expatriates in order to fill the gap left by the retiring baby boomers (Dittrich&Stara, 2013).
The growing population of senior citizens has a negative impact on the economies of countries in the west. Among the negative impacts of increased population of senior citizens include, for instance, dependency on younger people, increased government spending on healthcare and pension, and a decrease in a country’s workforce. As such, the demographic shifts created by an increase in the population of senior citizens require governments to take policy measures that will ensure the socioeconomic impact of the ageing population becomes manageable.

Dittrich, L., &Stara, D. (2013).The impact of ageing population on the rise of the health care
Cost.International Advances in Economic Research, 19(1), 11-17.
Felix, A., & Watkins, K. (2013).The impact of an ageing U.S. population on state tax revenues.
Economic Review, 4(1), 5-37.
Prettner, K. (2013).Population ageing and endogenous economic growth. Journal of Population
Economics, 26(2), 811-834.
Sakaguchi, R. (2015).The impact of an Ageing U.S. population.Oregon Business Magazine,
38(4), 52.



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