A.J.S.S. 34:4 (618–629) also available online © 2006 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden see www.brill.nl The Japanese Experience with Population Ageing and the Financing of Social Security, Health and other Social Services for the Elderly: Lessons for Other Nations P hua K ai L it Community Medicine Section International Medical University This article discusses population ageing and its impact on the ﬁ nancing of social secu- rity, health and other social services for the Japanese elderly. These lessons include: the importance of avoiding fragmentation and complexity in public programmes; the need to anticipate the possibility of escalating costs and how to deal with this challenge; dealing with non-compliance with the law in mandatory schemes; reducing ﬁ nancial pressure on ﬁ rms and individuals (especially during times of economic downturn); and anticipating possible service shortages either because of increased demand or because of mal-distribu- tion of facilities and personnel. Introduction Many nations in the world today, including Asian countries such as China and Singapore, are facing the challenges arising from a demographic and socioeconomic phenomenon known as “population ageing”. The term refers to a steady increase in the percentage of elderly in a country’s total pop- ulation from under 5%
Asian Journal of Social Science – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 2006
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