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Guangdong releases document on advancing elderly care system

Guangdong recently released a set of guidelines for facilitating the building of the basic elderly care system. The document proposed that by 2025, Guangdong will build a sustainable basic elderly care system and ensure that it is accessible to the entire elderly population, Xiong Song, Deputy Director General of the Department of Civil Affairs of Guangdong Province, said at a press conference on November 22.

The guidelines noted that the province should focus on meal services for older people, the renovation of elderly-oriented infrastructure, the number of nursing beds, the training of elderly care workers, and other aspects.

Among them, the construction of "elderly canteens" will efficiently improve meal assistance services for seniors. As of October 2023, there were 2,836 "elderly canteens" in Guangdong, and the number will increase to 3,000 by the end of 2023, according to Xiong.

In terms of the elderly-oriented infrastructure, Guangdong has invested 12.5 billion RMB, installed more than 20,000 elevators, and renovated 5,700 old residential areas since 2020, including 1,500 barrier-free residential areas. The province has also built 430 community-based sports parks for the elderly.

In the meantime, Guangdong will implement favorable support policies to ensure all institutional resources regarding elderly care are optimized and integrated. Private funds are encouraged to invest in or provide basic elderly care services.

Another highlight of the guidelines is merging industries such as smart elderly care and travel-style elderly care. These industries will attract further resources and promote enterprises and social organizations to offer high-quality and diversified elderly care services, making it a useful supplement to the basic elderly care system.

Data shows that there were 16.21 million people aged 60 and above in Guangdong at the end of 2022, accounting for 16.1 percent of the entire population. Guangdong's aging coefficient is expected to exceed 17% by 2025, and 20% by around 2030.

Reporter: Ariel

Editor: Olivia, Nan, Abby, James

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