Title Image

Future of Aged Care

New Choices for Elderly Australians

Australia, the Productivity Commission into aged care services published its findings in June 2011 and has highlighted the following:

• The aging population is increasing as a percentage of the whole population.
• The majority of elderly Australians wish to age in their own homes—in their own neighbourhoods.
• Evidence is mounting about the health benefits of strong social/ community connections.
• In cost-benefit terms, mandatory application of universal design standards for all new housing is not warranted however, voluntary adoption should be encouraged.

In this document, we hypothesise that the desire to age-in-place represents a willingness to embrace change and a growing desire for autonomy in later life, while preparing for our increasing frailty, health and safety issues as we advance into old age. Available evidence suggested that the trend in occupancy rates of aged care homes will continue downwards for all but the most vulnerable. The question remains: what purpose-built housing strategy will provide elderly Australians with the capacity to balance their needs and desires?