Ageing in place

Main Feature / 1st Quarter 2024

Ageing in place

by Kester Ray de Vera

March 20, 2024

Among the rapidly aging societies in Asia and the Pacific, Hong Kong is expected to have the highest share of the world’s senior population by 2050. More than four in 10 persons will be aged 60 and above then. JLL said the city will face a shortage of over 60,000 senior-friendly places by 2032.19 The global commercial real estate services firm has proposed luxury-style residential apartments as a solution.

Unlike wealthier residents, low-income households in Hong Kong do not really have this option. A pilot initiative by housing organisation Habitat for Humanity Hong Kong helps older people living in public rental housing to age at home through improving safety and accessibility features. Typically, a health services professional will visit the senior resident to learn about daily routine activities. During the second assessment, a construction specialist will assess and recommend home improvements or repairs that suit the individual’s needs and lifestyle. 

The assessment is made using a tool developed by the Hong Kong Polytechnic University’s Jockey Club Design Institute for Social Innovation. Home modifications include the installation of a bedside light switch, D-shaped handles on cupboards, grab bars and assistive technology. Preliminary results of an impact evaluation20 in June 2023 showed that home modifications reduced older persons’ fear of falling at home and caregivers’ burden, and increased older persons’ satisfaction.

Read more stories from FuturArc 1Q 2024: Health/Wellness!



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