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Retirement

Age-appropriate housing could reduce hospitalisations for elderly Australians, report finds

  • June 28 2024
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Retirement

Age-appropriate housing could reduce hospitalisations for elderly Australians, report finds

By Nicole Comendador
June 28 2024

A new report from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) has highlighted the potential benefits of age-friendly housing in reducing hospitalisations among older Australians.

The "Injury in Australia" report, released on June 21, 2024, found that 296,490 people over the age of 65 presented to emergency departments with injuries across the country in 2022-23. The likelihood of injury was highest for those aged over 75, with falls accounting for 46 per cent of reported incidents leading to hospitalisations in this age group.

The Retirement Living Council (RLC) has welcomed the report's findings, stating they underscore the importance of age-appropriate housing. RLC Executive Director Daniel Gannon said the report should be instructive for governments managing the country's dual health and housing crises.

"There are 1.4 million Australians over the age of 75 who live in homes that aren't necessarily suitable for their ageing needs, which is leading to trips, falls and increased interaction with GPs and hospitals," Gannon said. He noted that retirement village residents are 20 per cent less likely to require hospitalisation after only nine months of living in these communities, leading to 14,000 avoided annual hospitalisations across Australia.

"As a consequence, age-friendly communities are minimising the interactions older Australians have with GPs and hospitals, while importantly delaying entry into taxpayer funded aged care," Gannon said.

The report also found that women aged 80-84 had the highest number of injury-related hospitalisations among female age cohorts, with 20,200 cases recorded. Gannon highlighted additional benefits of retirement communities, stating that compared to non-residents, those living in retirement villages are 15 per cent more physically active, 41 per cent happier, and five times more socially active. He added that these communities also contribute to reduced levels of depression and loneliness among residents.

The RLC estimates that reduced interaction with health systems generates $945 million in annual savings for the Australian Government while freeing up aged care beds for increasing demand. Gannon called on governments to take action in light of the AIHW report's findings and the impending demographic "silver tsunami". "Governments need to do everything they can to unleash more housing supply that keeps people healthier and happier for longer," he said.

Age-appropriate housing could reduce hospitalisations for elderly Australians, report finds

A new report from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) has highlighted the potential benefits of age-friendly housing in reducing hospitalisations among older Australians.

The "Injury in Australia" report, released on June 21, 2024, found that 296,490 people over the age of 65 presented to emergency departments with injuries across the country in 2022-23. The likelihood of injury was highest for those aged over 75, with falls accounting for 46 per cent of reported incidents leading to hospitalisations in this age group.

The Retirement Living Council (RLC) has welcomed the report's findings, stating they underscore the importance of age-appropriate housing. RLC Executive Director Daniel Gannon said the report should be instructive for governments managing the country's dual health and housing crises.

"There are 1.4 million Australians over the age of 75 who live in homes that aren't necessarily suitable for their ageing needs, which is leading to trips, falls and increased interaction with GPs and hospitals," Gannon said. He noted that retirement village residents are 20 per cent less likely to require hospitalisation after only nine months of living in these communities, leading to 14,000 avoided annual hospitalisations across Australia.

"As a consequence, age-friendly communities are minimising the interactions older Australians have with GPs and hospitals, while importantly delaying entry into taxpayer funded aged care," Gannon said.

The report also found that women aged 80-84 had the highest number of injury-related hospitalisations among female age cohorts, with 20,200 cases recorded. Gannon highlighted additional benefits of retirement communities, stating that compared to non-residents, those living in retirement villages are 15 per cent more physically active, 41 per cent happier, and five times more socially active. He added that these communities also contribute to reduced levels of depression and loneliness among residents.

The RLC estimates that reduced interaction with health systems generates $945 million in annual savings for the Australian Government while freeing up aged care beds for increasing demand. Gannon called on governments to take action in light of the AIHW report's findings and the impending demographic "silver tsunami". "Governments need to do everything they can to unleash more housing supply that keeps people healthier and happier for longer," he said.

Age-appropriate housing could reduce hospitalisations for elderly Australians, report finds

A new report from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) has highlighted the potential benefits of age-friendly housing in reducing hospitalisations among older Australians.

The "Injury in Australia" report, released on June 21, 2024, found that 296,490 people over the age of 65 presented to emergency departments with injuries across the country in 2022-23. The likelihood of injury was highest for those aged over 75, with falls accounting for 46 per cent of reported incidents leading to hospitalisations in this age group.

The Retirement Living Council (RLC) has welcomed the report's findings, stating they underscore the importance of age-appropriate housing. RLC Executive Director Daniel Gannon said the report should be instructive for governments managing the country's dual health and housing crises.

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"There are 1.4 million Australians over the age of 75 who live in homes that aren't necessarily suitable for their ageing needs, which is leading to trips, falls and increased interaction with GPs and hospitals," Gannon said. He noted that retirement village residents are 20 per cent less likely to require hospitalisation after only nine months of living in these communities, leading to 14,000 avoided annual hospitalisations across Australia.

Age-appropriate housing could reduce hospitalisations for elderly Australians, report finds

"As a consequence, age-friendly communities are minimising the interactions older Australians have with GPs and hospitals, while importantly delaying entry into taxpayer funded aged care," Gannon said.

The report also found that women aged 80-84 had the highest number of injury-related hospitalisations among female age cohorts, with 20,200 cases recorded. Gannon highlighted additional benefits of retirement communities, stating that compared to non-residents, those living in retirement villages are 15 per cent more physically active, 41 per cent happier, and five times more socially active. He added that these communities also contribute to reduced levels of depression and loneliness among residents.

The RLC estimates that reduced interaction with health systems generates $945 million in annual savings for the Australian Government while freeing up aged care beds for increasing demand. Gannon called on governments to take action in light of the AIHW report's findings and the impending demographic "silver tsunami". "Governments need to do everything they can to unleash more housing supply that keeps people healthier and happier for longer," he said.

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