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  1. 1

    World population ageing: 1950-2050.

    United Nations. Department of Economic and Social Affairs. Population Division

    New York, New York, United Nations, 2001. [48] p. (ST/ESA/SER.A/207)

    The Population Division of the United Nations has a long tradition of studying population ageing, including estimating and projecting older populations, and examining the determinants and consequences of population ageing. From the groundbreaking report on population ageing in 1956, which focused mainly on population ageing in the more developed countries, to the first United Nations wallchart on population ageing issues published in 1999, the Population Division has consistently sought to bring population ageing to the attention of the international community. The present report is intended to provide a solid demographic foundation for the debates and follow-up activities of the Second World Assembly on Ageing. The report considers the process of population ageing for the world as a whole, for more and less developed regions, major areas and regions, and individual countries. Demographic profiles covering the period 1950 to 2050 are provided for each country, highlighting the relevant indicators of population ageing. (excerpt)
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  2. 2
    Peer Reviewed

    The third age, the Third World and the third millennium.

    Diczfalusy E

    CONTRACEPTION. 1996 Jan; 53(1):1-7.

    In the year 2000, world population will exceed 6200 million and life expectancy will be over 68 years. The UN population projections for the coming 20 years after 1996 range from a low of 7100 million to a high of 7800 million. Between 1950 and 1992, in developing countries, life expectancy at birth increased by 29 years in China, by 24 years in India and Indonesia, by 21 years in Bangladesh, and by 16 years in Brazil. The gender difference in life expectancy is only 1 year in India, but 6 years in a number of developed countries. Corresponding increases in Australia were from 12.2 to 14.7 years for men and from 14.9 to 18.8 years for women. By the year 2025, the UN projects that the elderly (65 years and older) will constitute 10% of the population in Asia and more than 20% in North America and Europe, whereas 1.8% of the population of Asia, 4.6% of North America, and 6.4% of Europe will be very old (80 years and older). By the year 2030, there may be 1200 million postmenopausal women around the world, 76% of them in the developing countries. During the period 1990-2025 the elderly population of Sweden will increase by 33%, whereas that of Indonesia will increase by 414%. Between 2000 and 2100, the global population aged 15 years or younger will gradually decrease from 31.4% to 18.3%, while the population aged 65 and over will increase from 6.8% to 21.6%. The persistence of poverty in developing countries combined with aging poses a formidable challenge because the majority of old people receive little special support. The epidemiological dimension of aging embraces mortality and morbidity. Each year 39 million people die in the developing world mainly from infectious and parasitic diseases, noncommunicable and communicable diseases, and injuries. In the developed countries 11 million die primarily from cardiovascular diseases and malignant neoplasms. In the developing countries noncommunicable diseases represent 87% of the disease burden resulting in increased isolation of the elderly. The ethical dilemma facing health care is poverty among the elderly.
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  3. 3

    Expert Group Meeting on Population Growth and Demographic Structure.


    As part of the preparation for the forth-coming UN International Conference on Population and Development, an expert group met in Paris, France, in November 1992 to discuss population growth and demographic structure. As part of the demographic background for the meeting provided by the UN Population Division, participants were informed that although the world population growth rate began to decline in the late 1970s, this decline has not yet resulted in declining absolute numbers, and the annual increment to the world population was not expected to decline to the level that existed in 1985 until the period 2020-25. World population increased from 2.5 billion in 1950 to 5.3 billion in 1990. The medium variant population projection of the UN shows world population at 6.3 billion in 2000 and 8.5 billion in 2025 (the high variant shows 9.4 billion in 2025 and the low variant shows 7.6 billion). Population aging is expected to reach unparalleled levels in 2010-20. The meeting then considered the topics of population growth and socioeconomic development, confronting poverty in developing countries, demographic impacts of development patterns, demographic and health transitions, population growth and employment, social change and the elderly in developing countries, and social development and ageing in developed countries, The expert group meeting then prepared 19 recommendations aimed at governments, social institutions, and the international community. The recommendations call for political commitment to human resources development and population and development programs, especially in least developed countries, alleviation of poverty and social inequality, and equality of access to social and health resources that will lead to reduced mortality and fertility. Governments are urged to place a high priority on education and on increasing women's access to education and to remove barriers to economic independence for women. Health-sector priorities should be reassessed to provide the most cost-effective and efficient means of providing health care, reproductive health-care programs should receive high priority, and efforts should be made to minimize the effects of HIV infection and reduce the spread of AIDS. The needs of the elderly should be met with a "safety net," which should be developed in countries with no social security programs. The elderly should be recognized as an important human resource for development, and intergenerational equity should exist to accommodate their needs, with special efforts made to help them remain in their own homes and communities. Governments should collect accurate, comprehensive, and regular data on population characteristics and trends, and the international community should facilitate the comparative analysis of such data. Training should be provided to professionals in demography and related fields in developing countries.
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