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Govt claims 1 in 4 Aussies will be aged 65 years old by 2056

09 September, 2008

Australian Bureau of Statistics data released recently shows one in four Australians will be aged 65 and over by 2056 is to be welcomed – and the Australian Government has detailed plans to respond to our nation’s record life expectancy rates.

The Minister for Ageing, Justine Elliot was commenting on ABS data showing that Australia’s population is set to change substantially over the next 50 years.

“Australia has the world’s second longest life expectancy after the Japanese – and this is to be celebrated. Since when did living longer become a bad thing,” Elliot said.

“Longevity is a world-wide phenomenon and all societies are responding. In late- July, Rolling Stones’ frontman, Mick Jagger reached 65 and qualified for a UK pension.

“The Australian Government is responding by investing record levels into aged and community care to prepare for the challenges of the 21st century.

“No Government has invested more in aged and community care,” Elliot said. Over the next four years, the Australian Government will invest more than $40 billion – including $28.6 billion alone into nursing homes.

In addition, the Australian Government is investing in community care so that Australians can remain independent and in their homes for as long as they wish.

In 2008-2009, $2.2 billion of that will be spent on community care.

Yesterday (September 3), Mrs Elliot told Federal Parliament that building approvals in aged care for the last quarter reached record levels with more than $302 million in projects – an increase of 20.8 per cent over the same period – a year ago.

 Elliot pledged to continue to work in partnership with older Australians, aged care providers, unions and consumer groups to improve quality in residential aged care.

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