Pécs Declaration on Healthy Ageing of Roma Communities
The WHO European Region has a rapidly increasing population of older people. The 2014 European Commission Roma Health Report reveals that the longevity rate – the proportion of people who can expect to reach the age of 75 and over – for the European Union (EU) non-Roma population is 51%. However, the rate for the Roma population is just half at 26%. Roma experience an estimated 10–15 years lower life expectancy than non-Roma. Issues of ageing do not matter less for Roma communities: age-related, multiple chronic conditions, physical limitations and lowered quality of life in many cases start earlier and can last substantially longer. A life-course approach for healthy ageing is therefore highly relevant for the Roma population. Investments in child and adolescent health, sexual and reproductive health, and preventive care (including vaccinations) are also crucial for maintaining good health as people get older.