Increase In The Global Population Essay

2484 words - 10 pages

The global population is increasing at a rapid pace, and a considerable amount of attention is being given by many nations throughout the world to the steady climb in people’s ages. People living long into the standard retirement age is largely contributing to the massive increase in the global population. It is only in the last century or so that there has been a high rate of elderly people. Now, people who are 65 years old or so are considered to be elderly, but 200 years ago, that age was likely around 50 (Stevenson, n.d.). This essay will discuss the role and status of older adults across different cultures. The number of people is steadily increasing, and a large contribution to this growth is the longer life expectancy of the average person in various cultures throughout the world. While the vast majority of nations throughout the world are experiencing an influx in elderly people, the roles and the ways that the elderly are treated are highly divergent.
The study of aging, or gerontology, has shown the steady growth in the average age of a person, and this is largely related to improved healthcare coverage in developed nations. Many countries are now participating in health care coverage for the average citizen. In the United States, for example, Medicare has benefitted the average citizen – and the implementation of ObamaCare is expected to do so even more. This shows the dedication by the American public to take care of the elderly people. While some believe that elderly people are treated with disrespect – which is true in many cases – the social welfare system is going through a restructuring process where the interests of the elderly are being placed in high priority. While improvements in the social healthcare system has had major effects on the average age in the U.S., not all nations are able to afford to provide medical benefits to the nation’s residents. The elderly account for approximately one-third of the expenses. “Health care expenditures currently account for 16 percent of the U.S. gross domestic product and cost the nation almost two trillion dollars a year” (Stevenson, n.d.). The health care costs are expected to increase because the American population is rapidly aging. The number of people who are older than 65 that live in the U.S. is higher than the total number of people living in Canada. Between 1990 and 2030, the number of elderly people living in America is expected to double to 66 million (Chapin et. al., 2002). While America can cover many of the health care costs, the emerging countries are not as capable. However, they are expected to soon be able to provide their residents with health care coverage comparable to what is offered in the U.S., and this will further drive the population boom as more people throughout the world begin living to older ages.
The population shift is expected to have a major effect on the economy, politics, culture and values. Everyone will be effected by this (Smith et. al., 2010)....

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