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Age as an Equality Issue by Sandra Fredman, Sarah Spencer

By Sandra Fredman, Sarah Spencer

To what quantity is age unavoidably associated with declining ability? What are the objectives of a coverage on age equality, and the way can those be learned in legislation? How should still legislations and coverage deal with age discrimination in future health, schooling and employment? should still children be handled within the related approach as older humans? This booklet solutions those questions in a chain of chapters by way of specialists from a variety of disciplines. It examines the character of the getting older strategy and offers a close research of the idea that of age equality.

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Poorer outcomes from health care interventions, where these are not attributable to poorer treatment, are due to physiological impairments that may or may not be present in a particular individual even if the probability of their presence, when nothing else is known about the individual, rises with his or her age. If one knows enough about the physiological condition of the patient, age should drop off the end of the predictive equation for outcome. This has been most closely achieved in the field of intensive care and the work of Knaus8 who found that when everything that is known physiologically about an intensive care patient is fed into a predictive equation, age 6 A Amery et al, ‘Mortality and morbidity results from the European Working Party on High Blood Pressure in the Elderly trial’ Lancet (1985) i, 1350–54.

In France, for example, the decline is dramatic: whereas over 90 per cent of men aged 50 are in the labour force, this plunges to only 40 per cent at age 60. In Belgium, France, Italy, Luxembourg and Austria, fewer than 30 per cent of people between 55 and 64 are working. In the US, by contrast, 67 per cent are still working at 60, as against 90 per cent at age 50. 10 There are several reasons for these trends. 11 An added impetus to retire early was created by the increased availability of occupational pension schemes, and the fact that many specify earlier pensionable ages than the state scheme without penalties.

Health Care The vast majority of older people remain fit and healthy enough to run their own lives. 32 Nevertheless, whereas age is not necessarily correlated with failing capacity and ill health, the risks of ill health and disability rise with age. Indeed, older people form a large part of the constituency of the health service. Adult NHS and social care services are utilised by older people to a greater extent than younger people. 2bn) went on over 65 year olds. Two thirds of acute hospital beds were occupied by people over 65, and people over 75 make greater use of hospital, primary care and community health care services than other groups.

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