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Roundtable discusses ageing in place in Singapore

09 October 2012

Minister Khor sharing how Singapore will address the issue of ageing
Singapore will be a much older society by 2030. How prepared we are to support such a population will surely define, to a large extent, the Singapore we see by then, said Dr Amy Khor, Singapore's Minister of State for Health and Manpower, at a roundtable discussion on ageing. Held on 9 October and hosted by the Singapore Research Nexus and the Health Cluster of the NUS Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS), the roundtable discussion saw some 130 NUS researchers, eldercare practitioners, advocates for the elderly and policy makers converge to examine the issue of ageing and how prepared Singapore is for the inevitable process.

Sharing her insights, Dr Khor said that ageing can be addressed using 4 “P”s - philosophy, physical environment, policies and people. 

She also outlined the measures that are available to facilitate ageing in place, such as the Enhancement for Active Seniors Programme which offers subsidised home modifications for the elderly staying in Housing and Development Board flats. Come 2016, there will be more than 100 eldercare facilities in place. Policies such as the Ageing-in-Place Priority Scheme, which gives seniors more chances at balloting for a right-size studio apartment close to their current residential areas and the CPF Life, which helps to ensure that citizens will have sufficient savings in old age, will help the elderly during their retirement days.

Highlighting the pressing issue of ageing in the context of Singapore, Professor Brenda Yeoh, Dean of the NUS FASS, urged researchers, practitioners and policy makers to explore opportunities to work together so as to help Singapore support an ageing population and enable the elderly live a healthy, active and independent life.

Various NUS researchers took the opportunity to share their work on ageing which included living arrangements, home design, self-care of older persons as well as policies for long-term care delivery and financing.

Incepted in 2006, the FASS Health Cluster initiates and supports faculty and graduate student research on health-related issues of relevance to Singapore and the region. It also supports multidisciplinary research through the various departments of the faculty and builds on existing cross-campus collaborations with the NUS Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, School of Business, Faculty of Law and Faculty of Engineering.