Ageing and elderly care in the Arab region: Policy challenges and opportunities
Shereen Hussein | King's College London
Populations are expected to age rapidly in the Arab countries during the coming few decades. However, the current evidence base indicates that many countries in the region are not paying attention to this demographic phenomenon. This is a particular concern as longevity is often accompanied by many years of ill health and disability and most of the countries in the region continue to rely on the family as the primary source of elder care. While the family, and particularly women, are expected to provide increasing support for longer, they are faced by a set of socio-demographic changes that may hinder their ability to provide such care. This presentation focuses on the ageing demographics in the Arab region and reflects on the multiple-roles for women by utilising quantitative analysis of international population and socio-economic indicators as well as reviewing the background literature and current ageing policies in the region. The paper then discusses possible strategies to address increasing long-term care needs through a social capital lens, where support to informal carers particularly women is emphasised.