More needs to be done for the elderly-Vuniwaqa

Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation Mereseini Vuniwaqa looks on as permanent secretary Dr Joe Koroivueta briefs her during the National Council of Older Persons meeting at Tanoa Plaza conference room in Suva on Friday, March 01, 2019. Picture: JONACANI LALAKOBAU

THERE is a lot of improvement that needs to be done by the Government to accommodate Fiji’s increasing old age population.

This was the issue highlighted by the Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation Mereseini Vuniwaqa while addressing the national council for older people meeting at Tanoa Plaza in Suva this morning.

According to the Fiji Census in 2017, she said more than 9% of Fiji’s population were over the age of 60 consisting of 80,483 population.

Mrs Vuniwaqa said around 12.8% people living with disability in Fiji with a total population of 113,595.

The projections by United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) , she said revealed that Fiji’s current older population had grown by 3000 people per year – the oldest old population was 80 years and over.

Mrs Vuniwaqa said the older population age was expected to increase rapidly from 5000 in 2010 to 28,500 by 2050.

“The implication of this triumph of people living longer, will question how ready are we, as a nation to improve services for our citizens, be it in the social or economic sector,” she said.

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