According to the World Health Organization, Ageism is the stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination against people on the basis of their age. Ageism is widespread and an insidious practice which has harmful effects on the health of older adults. For older people, ageism is an everyday challenge. Overlooked for employment, restricted from social services and stereotyped in the media, ageism marginalises and excludes older people in their communities.
Ageism is everywhere, yet it is the most socially 'normalized' of any prejudice, and is not widely countered – like racism or sexism. These attitudes lead to the marginalisation of older people within our communities and have negative impacts on their health and well-being.
Facts about ageing and health:
At the biological level, ageing results from the impact of the accumulation of a wide variety of molecular and cellular damage over time.
In developing a public-health response to ageing, it is important not just to consider approaches that ameliorate the losses associated with older age, but also those that may reinforce recovery, adaptation and psychosocial growth. (WHO, 2018)
Between 2015 and 2050, the proportion of the world's population over 60 years will nearly double from 12% to 22%.
By 2020, the number of people aged 60 years and older will outnumber children younger than 5 years.
In 2050, 80% of older people will be living in low- and middle-income countries.
The pace of population ageing is much faster than in the past.
These data are vital to know because they indicate how little countries (and especially the United States) are to serve the healthcare needs of an increasingly ageing population. Not only this, but they further expose the need to push back against the extreme global prejudices concerning elderly persons.
created by the American Geriatrics Society's Health in Aging Foundation, to provide consumers and caregivers with up-to-date information on health and aging. Overseen by a team of experts on caring for older adults, HealthinAging.org content is based on resources that the American Geriatrics Society has developed for its professional members.
This NIH publication is part of the Healthy Eating & Physical Activity Across Your Lifespan Series from the Weight-control Information Network (WIN). The series offers health tips for readers at various life stages, including adulthood, pregnancy, parenthood, and later life. The entire series is also available in Spanish.
This factsheet, published by the World Health Organization, lays out statistical information about old age across the world, disparities faced by older people, prejudices, and how to promote wellness at the late end of the lifespan.
Age-friendly environments foster healthy and active ageing. They enable older people to: age safely in a place that is right for them; be free from poverty; continue to develop personally; and to contribute to their communities while retaining autonomy, health and dignity. Because older people know best what they need, they are at the centre of any effort to create a more age-friendly world.
This consortium cuts across schools and departments, allowing clinical, professional, academic and fine-art scholars and researchers to communicate and innovate together in the interest of older adults. The Consortium also actively engages with a wide variety of community partners, working together to respond to the needs of our aging world.
GSA is the oldest and largest interdisciplinary organization devoted to research, education, and practice in the field of aging. GSA’s principal mission is to promote the study of aging and disseminate information to scientists, decision makers, and the general public.
brief, online ageism-reduction strategies can be an effective way to combat ageism. These strategies hold promise to be tested in other settings, with other samples, and to be elaborated into more in-depth interventions that aim to reduce ageism in everyday culture.
the ageing of populations is rapidly accelerating worldwide. For the first time in history, most people can expect to live into their 60s and beyond. The consequences for health, health systems, their workforce and budgets are profound. The World report on ageing and health responds to these challenges by recommending equally profound changes in the way health policies for ageing populations are formulated and services are provided. As the foundation for its recommendations, the report looks at what the latest evidence has to say about the ageing process, noting that many common perceptions and assumptions about older people are based on outdated stereotypes.
Disparities in early-life populations
Ageism is prevalent not only in older adults; it affects adolescents and younger persons as well. Health and wellness are particularly affected by ageist attitudes and biases, and result in a proliferation of health care disparities.
Reducing childhood health disparities is an important social goal for a number of reasons, especially due to the implications of child health on lifelong health and productivity in adulthood, and the costs associated with both. Social, environmental and political factors all influence the persistence of health disparities in the U.S. making the reduction and ultimate elimination of health disparities among children a complex responsibility for all of society.
Facts about early life and health:
There were an estimated 73.6 million children in the U.S. in 2016 (childstats.gov):
49% of whom belong to a racial or ethnic minority group
677,120 are at risk of maltreatment
20% live below the poverty line
18% are classified as food insecure
28% are not regularly immunized/vaccinated
20% register as obese
12% have had a major depressive episode within a year's time
Children's Rights focuses on advocacy and literacy for children at risk of maltreatment, living in the foster care system, and ageing out of foster care. The organization began in 1995, and provides a robust literature designed to end disparities associated with homelessness, abuse, and foster care.
A website associated with The Nemours Center for Children's Health Media, KidsHealth is a consumer health tool that provides information as to children's healthcare needs without resorting to medical jargon.
MedlinePlus is the National Institutes of Health's Web site for patients and their families and friends. Produced by the National Library of Medicine, the world’s largest medical library, it brings you information about diseases, conditions, and wellness issues in language you can understand. MedlinePlus offers reliable, up-to-date health information, anytime, anywhere, for free. You can use MedlinePlus to learn about the latest treatments, look up information on a drug or supplement, find out the meanings of words, or view medical videos or illustrations. You can also get links to the latest medical research on your topic or find out about clinical trials on a disease or condition.
This study identifies three separate but inter-linked strands crucial to understanding the concept of the evolving capacities of the child: developmental dimensions, participation and emancipation, and cultural/parental/community protections.
NICHD was founded in 1962 to investigate human development throughout the entire life process, with a focus on understanding disabilities and important events that occur during pregnancy. Since then, research conducted and funded by NICHD has helped save lives, improve wellbeing, and reduce societal costs associated with illness and disability. NICHD’s mission is to ensure that every person is born healthy and wanted, that women suffer no harmful effects from reproductive processes, and that all children have the chance to achieve their full potential for healthy and productive lives. The institute also aims to ensure the health, productivity, independence, and well-being of people through optimal rehabilitation.
While the national childhood obesity rate has leveled off, and rates have declined in some places and among some groups, troubling racial and ethnic disparities persist among communities of color. Black and Latino youths have substantially higher rates of overweight and obesity than do their White peers. This is true among younger children, older adolescents, and both boys and girls.
The National Institute of Mental Health provides a wide-ranging and thorough look at mental health disorders, populations at risk, current research, methods of prevention, treatment, and coping.
Being Mortal by Atul GawandeIn Being Mortal, bestselling author Atul Gawande tackles the hardest challenge of his profession: how medicine can not only improve life but also the process of its ending Medicine has triumphed in modern times, transforming birth, injury, and infectious disease from harrowing to manageable. But in the inevitable condition of aging and death, the goals of medicine seem too frequently to run counter to the interest of the human spirit. Nursing homes, preoccupied with safety, pin patients into railed beds and wheelchairs. Hospitals isolate the dying, checking for vital signs long after the goals of cure have become moot. Doctors, committed to extending life, continue to carry out devastating procedures that in the end extend suffering. Gawande, a practicing surgeon, addresses his profession’s ultimate limitation, arguing that quality of life is the desired goal for patients and families. Gawande offers examples of freer, more socially fulfilling models for assisting the infirm and dependent elderly, and he explores the varieties of hospice care to demonstrate that a person's last weeks or months may be rich and dignified. Full of eye-opening research and riveting storytelling, Being Mortal asserts that medicine can comfort and enhance our experience even to the end, providing not only a good life but also a good end.
Publication Date: 2014
Child Health and the Environment by Donald T. WigleThis is the first textbook to focus on environmental threats to child health. It will interest professionals and graduate students in public health, paediatrics, environmental health, epidemiology, and toxicology. The first three chapters provide overviews of key children's environmental health issues as well as the role of environmental epidemiology and risk assessment in child health protection. Overarching themes are the susceptibility of the rapidly developing fetus and infant to environmental toxicants, the importance of modifying factors (e.g. poverty, genetic traits, nutrition), the role of health outcome and exposure monitoring, uncertainties surrounding environmental exposure limits, and the importance of timely intervention. Later chapters address the health effects of metals, PCBs, dioxins, pesticides, hormonally active agents, radiation, indoor and outdoor air pollution, and water contaminants. In analyzing potential environmental hazards, the book addresses both biologic and epidemiologic evidence, including the likelihood of causal relationships.; Among the health outcomes he discusses are developmental, reproductive, and neurobehavioral effects, respiratory disease, cancer, and waterborne infectious diseases. These discussions cover environmental exposure sources/indicators, interventions, and standards, and conclude with a summary of calls for an improved science base to guide public health decisions and protect child health.
Publication Date: 2003
Child Health in America by Judith S. PalfreyWho will speak for the children? is the question posed by Judith S. Palfrey, a pediatrician and child advocate who confronts unconscionable disparities in U.S. health care--a system that persistently fails sick and disabled children despite annual expenditures of $1.8 trillion. In Child Health in America, Palfrey explores the meaning of advocacy to children's health and describes how health providers, community agencies, teachers, parents, and others can work together to bring about needed change. Palfrey presents a conceptual framework for child health advocacy consisting of four interconnected components: clinical, group, professional, and legislative. Describing each of these concepts in useful and compelling detail, she is also careful to provide examples of best practices. This original and progressive work affirms the urgent need for child advocacy and provides valuable guidance to those seeking to participate in efforts to help all children live healthier, happier lives.
Publication Date: 2006
Children, Health and Well-Being by Geraldine Brady; Pam Lowe; Sonja Olin LauritzenThis book brings together new and leading scholars, who demonstrate the importance of research with children and from a child perspective, allowing for a fuller understanding of the meaning and impact of health and illness in children's lives. Demonstrates the importance of research with children and research from a child perspective, in order to fully understand the meaning and impact of health and illness in children's lives Encourages critical reflection on contemporary health policy and its relationships to culturally specific ways of knowing and understanding children's health Brings together new and leading scholars in the field of children's health and illness Moves the highly important issue of children's health into the mainstream sociology of health and illness
Publication Date: 2015
Encyclopedia of Ageism by Erdman B. Palmore (Editor); Diana K. Harris (Editor); Laurence Branch (Editor)Learn more about age discrimination and how it affects us all The Encyclopedia of Ageism is a comprehensive review of over 125 aspects of ageism, alphabetically arranged for easy access. Written by 60 experts, the book examines topics such as anti-aging, stereotypes, and the media--with numerous references for further information. You'll find an alphabetical list of the entries, a detailed index, and a list of the entries categorized by subject, to help you find what you need fast. This resource will increase your awareness about the many facets of ageism and provide you with a wealth of concepts, theories, and facts about ageism. This important resource exposes the many faces of dehumanization through the elder neglect and prejudice that results from today's worldwide youth-oriented culture. The Encyclopedia of Ageism will help you recognize ageism when you encounter it and avoid it in your own thinking and actions. The book is a valuable guide for anyone working with older people and for older people themselves. With the Encyclopedia of Ageism, you will be able to identify personal, cultural, and institutional sources of ageism, such as: age denial age inequality/stratification sexuality scapegoating abuse the disengagement theory and so much more! This eye-opening reference shows how discrimination against elders can have consequences to the aged, the youth, the economy, and society as a whole. The Encyclopedia of Ageism promotes a future where the human rights of older persons are preserved and aging is considered a positive stage in the cycle of life. With this book, you will find strategies for reducing ageism, changing perceptions, and enhancing the quality of life for senior citizens and--someday--yourself.
Global Child Health Advocacy by Stephen Berman (Editor); Judith S. Palfrey (Editor); Zulfiqar Bhutta (Editor); Adenike O. Grange (Editor)Global Child Health Advocacy: On the Front Lines inspires and equips child health professionals to join together and work for positive change. This first-in-its-field resource brings you up-close accounts of successful initiatives straight from the front lines. If offers an inside look on the innovative strategies, tools, and techniques today's advocates use to promote health, deliver targeted care, and implement policies to improve children's lives. A multi-national editorial team assembles engaging stories chronicling the experiences of top-tier advocates in every corner of the globe: - Improving access to care in Nigeria - Creating a public child medical insurance system in China - Haemophilus influenzae vaccine advocacy in Guatemala - Implementing a national immunization program in the U.S. - Community partnerships for polio eradication in India - Malnutrition crisis intervention in Niger - HIV advocacy in South Africa - Reducing neonatal mortality in Chile - Campaigning against tobacco in the western Pacific - Preventing diarheal diseases in Peru - And much more!
Publication Date: 2013
My Mother, Your Mother by Dennis McCulloughWhat's the right thing to do for mom and dad as they get older? Thanks to advances in science and medicine, more of our parents are living longer than ever before. And though we are rewarded with more time with the people we love, we are also faced with new sets of complications--more diseases, more disability, more need for support and careful judgments. Yet while our health care system may help people live to an older age, it doesn't perform so well when decline eventually sets in. We want to do the best thing but are overwhelmed with the staggering choices we face. Geriatrician Dennis McCullough has spent his life helping families to cope with their parents' aging and eventual final passage, experiences he faced with his own mother. In this comforting and much-needed book, he recommends a new approach, which he terms "Slow Medicine." Shaped by common sense and kindness, grounded in traditional medicine yet receptive to alternative therapies, Slow Medicine advocates for careful anticipatory "attending" to an elder's changing needs rather than waiting for crises that force acute medical interventions--an approach that improves the quality of elders' extended late lives without bankrupting their families financially or emotionally. As Dr. McCullough argues, we need to learn that time and kindness are sometimes more important and humane at these late stages than state-of-the-art medical interventions. My Mother, Your Mother will help you learn how to: --form an early and strong partnership with your parents and siblings; --strategize on connecting with doctors and other care providers; --navigate medical crises; --create a committed Advocacy Team; --reach out with greater empathy and awareness; and --face the end-of-life time with confidence and skill. Although taking care of those who have always cared for us is not an easily navigated time of life, My Mother, Your Mother will help you and your family to prepare for this complex journey. This is not a plan for getting ready to die; it is a plan for understanding, for caring, and for helping those you love live well during their final years. And the time to start is now.
Publication Date: 2008
The New Neighborhood Senior Center by Joyce WeilIn 2011, seven thousand American "baby boomers" (those born between 1946 and 1964) turned sixty-five daily. As this largest U.S. generation ages, cities, municipalities, and governments at every level must grapple with the allocation of resources and funding for maintaining the quality of life, health, and standard of living for an aging population.nbsp; Innbsp;The New Neighborhood Senior Center, Joyce Weil uses in-depth ethnographic methods to examine a working-class senior center in Queens, New York. She explores the ways in which social structure directly affects the lives of older Americans and traces the role of political, social, and economic institutions and neighborhood processes in the decision to close such centers throughout the city of New York.nbsp; Many policy makers and gerontologists advocate a concept of "aging in place," whereby the communities in which these older residents live provide access to resources that foster and maintain their independence. But all "aging in place" is not equal and the success of such efforts depends heavily upon the social class and availability of resources in any given community. Senior centers, expanded in part by funding from federal programs in the 1970s, were designed as focal points in the provision of community-based services. However, for the first wave of "boomers," the role of these centers has come to be questioned. nbsp; Declining government support has led to the closings of many centers, even as the remaining centers are beginning to "rebrand" to attract the boomer generation. However,nbsp;The New Neighborhood Senior Centerdemonstrates the need to balance what the boomers' want from centers with the needs of frailer or more vulnerable elders who rely on the services of senior centers on a daily basis. Weil challenges readers to consider what changes in social policies are needed to support or supplement senior centers and the functions they serve.nbsp;
Publication Date: 2014
Textbook of Global Child Health by Deepak M. KamatDeveloped by more than 40 leading global child health experts, this all-new, first-of-its-kind textbook is a comprehensive reference tool that combines travel medicine, practicing medicine in other countries; and review of diseases endemic in the tropics and resource-limited areas.a OCo This textbook begins by presenting foundational information to build understanding of disease, health, medicine, culture, law, and the environment.a a OCo It provides information for health care practitioners on preparing families traveling with children.a Finally, health and illness are discussed in tangible ways to guide the practice of pediatrics in resource-limited regions of the planet.a a OCo This textbook can serve health care practitioners in conjunction with other AAP publications such as: Working in International Child Health, Atlas of Pediatrics in the Tropics and Resource-Limited Settings
Publication Date: 2011
What Works in Reducing Inequalities in Child Health? (Second Edition) by Helen RobertsThe UK has a deservedly strong reputation for work on understanding social inequalities in health, but there is some way to go in using research and other types of knowledge to reduce inequalities in child health. This revised and updated edition of an important report looks at macro public policy interventions, community interventions, and individual level interventions in a variety of settings, including infancy, early years, childhood, adolescence, and particular needs including looked after children. It considers 'what works' - or might work - in practice. There are new case studies, updated research references, and new reference to cost effectiveness - all relevant for doing the right thing in a climate of austerity. Drawing on evidence from the UK and beyond, the book presents these in an accessible form, not just for those who make decisions now, but also for the students of today who are the decision makers of tomorrow. The book is supported by a companion website, containing additional materials for both students and lecturers, which is available from the link above.