India is gradually undergoing a demographic change. With decline in fertility and mortality rates accompanied by an improvement in child survival, good medical care, improved lifestyle and increased life expectancy, a significant feature of demographic change is the progressive increase in the number of elderly persons.
Today India has 2nd largest number of Elderly. In 2010 there are more than 90 million ‘Senior Citizens’ i.e. people above 60 years of age of the total population. According to UN by 2050, nearly 20% of India’s population will comprise of people over the age of 60 years. UN also estimates urban population in India to increase from 30 % in 2010 to more than 50 % by 2045. Life expectancy has also increased by 60% from 42 yrs in 1951 to 68.6 yrs in 2008.According to UNICEF Life expectancy in India is expected to be 75 years in 2045-2050.
There has been also Drastic change in 3 segment: Young Old(60- 70 yrs), Old Old ( 71 – 80yrs ) Very Old ( 81+ yrs).
The elderly although a resource of wisdom and valuable experience are perhaps the most marginalised community in India. The now fading joint family system and the Indian cultural values that preached reverence and service towards the elders had served a protective and secure net for the elderly. The advent of nuclear families and other factors like children migrating to cities or abroad for better career opportunities have brought out a range of issues like insecurity, loneliness and lack of companionship leaving the elders more vulnerable in their twilight years. Geriatric Care and Gerontology work is almost non-existent in India. The problems of the elderly don’t end here. Due to their inability to “perform faster” they are often rejected and abused socially, sadly more by their offspring than others, depriving them of a life of dignity and self worth.
But since 1990’s there has been wave of globalization and situation has changed. Elderly are looking for service and products for their long and dignified life. People above 50+ age group have max purchasing power.
Although many social organizations have taken up measures for senior’s well-being, corporate sector in India still not fully sure about the opportunities this segment can offer. There is huge demand now for Elder Friendly products and services.
By providing innovative products and services we are going to open new employment opportunities for all ages. Especially youngsters can be involved in providing services to elderly which will be good in long term to fill gap of intergeneration issues.
Government can promote and encourage business and social entrepreneur by proving Tax Holiday and subsidy to this new sunrise industry.
Participation of corporate sector in providing products and service, will also help funding of NGO’s by CSR to one of the most neglected and ignored segment, the elderly.
Following are some areas of opportunities that can be addressed by civil society and government either singly or by public private partnership. A holistic approach is needed to address the needs of growing and demanding silver population.
Product & Services classified broadly in Six segments:
1).Accommodation and shelter
a) Emergency services
b) Security systems
c) Retirement Township / Village
d) Dementia Home
e) Long Term Care
f) Second home
2). Consumer Durables:
a) Refrigerators, ovens, microwave ovens, geysers, washing machines, air conditioners, water purifiers etc
b) ICT products and services
3) .Personal care-related products and services:
a) General maintenance & care cosmetics
b) Skin care
c) Anti-ageing cosmetics, color cosmetics and other anti ageing Products
d) Beauty parlors, spas and saunas
e) Adult Diapers
f) Brain games
g) Assisted devices
4) .Wellness products & Health-related products and services:
a) Diet Foods
b) Protein related intakes
c) Nutrition enhancing supplements
d) Gyms and fitness centers
e) Centers of alternative therapies and treatments
f) Gadgets and equipments related to health monitoring
g) Fall prevention
h) Geriatric Management Services
a) Wealth management
b) Income generation
c) Mediclaim / Medicare
e) Reverse Mortgage
f) Pension schemes
g) Micro Finance / SHG
h) Second Career
6) .Elder Services
a) Spirituality services
b) Care taker bureaus
c) Nursing Bureaus
d) Utility Services
e) Meal Services
f) Training and Development
g) Life Long Learning
h) Hobbies and Activity
i) Pre retirement training
k) Gerontological Services – psycho – social
l) Day care centers
m) Support Groups
n) Recreation services
o) Tours and Travel
p) Cremation services
q) Legal Aid
r) Financial Aid
s) Mobile clinics
t) Elder Designs & Architecture
u) E@ services
v) Respite Care
We at Silver Innings are working towards creating Elder Friendly World where Ageing becomes a Positive and Rewarding Experience. Hope we will have many new enterprising people and organisations working towards this goal.