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Singapore on track to respond to ageing population: official
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13:36, September 17, 2009

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Singapore is well placed to respond to population aging, a government official said on Thursday.

The country has been putting in place various policies and programs and is also learning from the experiences of other countries, and adapting the solutions to suit its particular context and circumstances, said Lim Boon Heng, Singapore's Minister for Prime Minister's Office.

He indicated that active aging goes beyond the traditional realms of health.

"A recent paper by OECD listed the important contributing factors to active aging. Among others, these include increased participation in community activities, improved healthy lifestyles, and having a healthcare system that is better adapted to the needs of the elderly," he said.

The minister said that one of the ways is to strengthen primary healthcare and to adopt preventive strategies. For example, through health screenings, residents found to be at risk can be referred to their family physicians for follow-ups.

Social networking through interest groups is also important, headed.

He highlighted that the family is a key pillar of support for seniors and that support must continue to be given to families to fulfill this duty of family care giving.

By 2030, Singapore will have the second highest percentage of seniors above 65 in Asia at about 20 percent, lagging behind only Japan.

Source: Xinhua

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