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The Upside of Aging: How Long Life Is Changing the World of Health, Work, Innovation, Policy and Purpose by Paul Irving

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Chapter 13 Healthy Ageing and Well-Being in Britain and the World

Baroness Sally Greengross

Member, UK House of Lords; Chief Executive, UK International Longevity Center  

Our twentieth-century institutions can survive and flourish in the twenty-first century, but they need to respond to new demographic demands by setting new goals. Ending Alzheimer’s, creating age-friendly environments, and eliminating ageism are universal challenges that all countries must face in an era of population ageing.

Elevation to the UK House of Lords in 2000, as Baroness Greengross of Notting Hill, was a great honor for me. I already had spent much of my adult life working on issues affecting older people in the United Kingdom. Ageing, after all, is an issue that is not only nationally important but also crucial to each and every person. Recognizing the need for equality among age groups led me to Age Concern England, which I headed from 1987 to 2000.

Unfortunately there remains much to be done to get away from the antiquated age-rigid approaches that still dominate much of the landscape when it comes to our ageing population around the world. At the same time, across the globe, societies are afflicted with the social, moral, health, and fiscal nightmares stemming from the explosion of age-related dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease. This is the major driver of my work, and as vice chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Dementia and Ageing and Older People, I am passionately committed ...

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