Aging society brings more benefits to men than women, international studies find
Gender differences in social aging favor men over women, suggesting that men have better resources to help them cope with the challenges of aging. International analysis published in Lancet’s healthy longevity The journal is the first type of study on gender differences in the experience of aging older people in 18 countries of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).
This study reveals that different gender roles in society do more than just take shape. The lifelong opportunities of women and men as well as the experiences of aging. Men are particularly advantageous in terms of income and wealth, are financially secure, are much more likely to be in paid work, and have fewer years of poor health than later women.
Globally, the population aged 65 and over is expected to more than double over the next 30 years, from 703 million in 2019 to 1.5 billion in 2050. Average lifespan It is over three years of more than men, and they spend more years in poor health. Although most OECD countries have universal health insurance, the risk of disability and health problems for women is disproportionately high, increasing the likelihood of long-term care. Women also have low incomes and are more likely to live alone at the end of their life.
“Aging societies reinforce the general gender norm that men continue to be given most of their opportunities, resources and social support,” said Dr Cynthia Chen, senior author of the National University of Singapore. Declared. “The world’s population is aging at an unprecedented rate and the proportion of older women and men is expected to increase, so there is an urgent need to challenge structural and political biases in favor of men. there are.”
Professor John Lowe, senior author at Columbia University in the United States, adds: – Not only will you ensure long-term savings and old age security, but it can also help women become more independent and better. health. It can also have a positive ripple effect on the next generation by reducing the burden of unpaid and informal long-term care on young women. ”
Policies and services to support the well-being of older people vary considerably from country to country, but little is known about the differences in the experience of aging between men and women, although in significant quantity. Gender difference In life expectancy and social role.
Measure the impact of society on the quality of aging
To solve this problem, the researchers used the latest data available from the OECD and the World Bank between 2015 and 2019 for 18 of the 35 well-documented OECD countries. We have developed a Gender Aging Index to estimate how successful society is in aging. For men and women.
The new index describes five areas that capture the social and economic factors that influence the quality of aging. Productivity and engagement (productive engagement in society through paid work or volunteering); equity (how resources are distributed equitably among older people, especially money and education). Cohesion (to what extent are non-living older people integrated into society, including the provision of social support); and security (both financial security and the level of physical security perceived by older people).
The researchers calculated the overall index for men and women and scores for individual domains (0-100) and compared these scores between gender and country. The higher the score, the more successful the aging of society.
In all societies, men age men more easily than women
The results suggest that gender differences in social aging favor men by an average of 9 points over women.
Overall, northern European countries (i.e. Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Norway), the Netherlands and Japan are good for both genders (the overall index score is 66+ for men and 55+ for women). The ratio of Eastern Europe to Southern Europe is at the bottom of the rankings (e.g. Hungary, Poland, Slovenia, the overall score is 38 or less versus 31 or less). The overall performance of the United States is average (male score 55 vs. female score 47), as are other industrialized countries in Western Europe such as the United Kingdom (57:47) and Germany (62:51).
The countries where the differences between the scores of men and women were greatest were the Netherlands (overall male index of 70 against 55 for women), Austria (64:51), Italy (51: 39) and Denmark (70:59). )has been. Poland (overall index score for men 32 versus 29 for women), Spain (55:51) and Ireland (62:56) have the smallest differences between men and women.
Strong gender biases favor men in terms of productivity and engagement, security and cohesion
The results reveal that the differences between men and women were the most important in terms of social integration, in particular: Social support And living with others (area of cohesion) – supporting men with an average of 21 points (Annex page 11). This gender disparity is caused by the fact that women often live longer than their partners, and therefore live alone towards the end of life, despite being more socially connected than men. Country rankings can be found in Figure S7 on page 11 of the appendix.
Likewise, in the 18 countries, men were more likely to have higher levels of productivity and involvement, financial and personal security than women, with an average of 10 points. In all countries, the average participation rate of older men was 6% higher, on average 1.7 years later than that of women (see Annex 8). In addition, men over 65 earn on average US $ 3,450 more than women, have more retirement assets, and are 15% more likely to report that they walk safely alone at night (i.e. i.e. men 83). While% feel safe, 68% feel safe. Annex page 10). Some of the biggest differences in safety were seen in Japan (safety score for men 62 vs. 39 for women) and the United States (53 vs. 32). Country rankings can be found on pages 8 (Figure S4) and 10 (Figure S6) of the Annex.
In contrast, gender differences in well-being and fairness revealed much weaker benefits for men, averaging 1.5 points and 3.5 points, respectively. The UK (male well-being score 74 vs female well-being score) and Italy (73 vs 64) had the largest difference in well-being scores, with scores favoring men (appendix page 7). The largest differences in equity scores were observed in Austria (79 for men against 63 for women) and in Germany (77 against 67). Across all countries, men were on average 5% less likely to experience poverty in their later years than women. Western and Northern Europe (i.e. Norway, Denmark, Finland, Netherlands, Belgium) ranked highest in terms of gender equity , reflecting strong social support, while the US and UK performed poorly. It shows that income distribution inequalities are widening as well as the wealth of these countries. Country rankings can be found on pages 7 (Figure S3) and 9 (Figure S5) of the Annex.
Call for gender-sensitive reforms
“Our findings underscore the importance of taking gender specific needs into account when developing policies and programs for an aging society. Even the best performing countries. There is a lot of room for improvement, ”says Dr Chen.
According to Professor Rowe, “This is about replicating successful programs and policies such as More Years – More Opportunity Strategies for Elderly Friendly Societies and the Swedish National Action Plan on Older People’s Policy. It is important to ensure that the experience of aging in the country becomes reality. For both men and women, longer years of healthy, active and productive lives. ”
The authors discuss gender discrimination and inequality in social aging, including minimum income requirements for healthy living of older people and the assessment of minimum pensions and income standards to remove barriers to care. health. We offer four measures to help you. They also recommend addressing the social isolation of older people to improve their emotional and mental well-being and introducing national policies to combat the declining economic status of older women (for example). By increasing pension benefits and offering tax incentives to older workers and their employers). Finally, the company suggests that policies need to be adapted to the experiences of different genders in order to improve social well-being and reduce inefficiencies in the labor market (eg, women’s work). By adopting flexible working hours to facilitate the task).
The authors acknowledge that their results indicate a difference in observation rather than cause and effect evidence. They could not identify trends over time because the survey was cross-sectional and if comparable gender data was inadequate, or if data was available at the national level rather than at the individual level. They also point out that different societies will assess different aspects of aging. In other words, there is an essential difference in the scores. Finally, they state that the generalization of the results for older people in low-income countries is uncertain, as the results reflect differences between developed countries.
Men have a 60% higher risk of death than women in 28-country study
Gender differences in national adaptation to social aging: international cross-sectional comparison, www.thelancet.com/journals/lan… (21) 00121-5 / fulltext
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Aging society brings more benefits to men than women, international studies find
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