Reducing inequities in health across the life-course: Later life and healthy ageing (2019)




Healthy ageing is the process of developing and maintaining functional ability that enables well-being in older age. Health inequities, which are systematic, unfair and avoidable differences in health status or in the distribution of health resources, accumulate over time and alter health trajectories across the life-course. Appropriate measurement and ongoing monitoring of health inequities and determinants can support policy actions that aim to reduce inequities among older people. Successful actions progressively raise or flatten the health gradient across the life-course. This paper discusses multiple determinants of health among older people: health services; personal and community capabilities; living conditions; employment and working conditions; and income and social protection. It outlines policy options and concrete examples of what can be done in health systems and across multiple sectors to reduce health inequities among older people, and potential indicators for measuring progress.