Aging populations in China and other Asia-Pacific regions offer a growing opportunity for foreign companies to provide home care services and institution-based care to seniors. In China alone, people over the age of 60 currently represent 14 percent of China’s population; that total is projected to reach 30 percent (437 million) by 2050. As a result, health care services for seniors are expected to represent almost 23 percent of China’s healthcare expenditures. According to the National Bureau of Statistics of China, State Development Research Institute, spending on senior care is forecasted to increase to more than 50 percent by 2020, as the average elderly person consumes three-to-five times more health care resources than a younger person.
The country lacks millions of nursing home employees to cope with the size and demands of its aging population. At present, most nursing homes in China are publicly funded and filled to capacity. The “4-2-1” phenomenon, where many families consist of four grandparents, two parents, and one child is making it difficult for younger people to cope with aging parents.
While the need for senior care initiatives in China and many Asian countries is great, international firms need to become intimately familiar with the regulatory landscape, cultural considerations, and the expectations of seniors in the Asia-Pacific region regarding costs and services/amenities.
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