The last century has witnessed a rapid increase in the population of the elderly people in the developed and industrialized countries. This phenomenon is not restricted to the western world only, but many countries such as ours are now feeling the impact of this transaction. This situation could be attributed to a combination of factors such as increase in age, longevity and decreased death rates due to advancement in the field of medicine, improvement of life expectancy at birth, and enhancement in the average span of life.
The phenomenon of population ageing is becoming a major concern for the policy makers all over the world, for both developed and developing countries, during last two decades. But the problems arising out of it will have varied implications for underdeveloped, developing and developed countries.
This paper reviews the literature on health in the informal settlements (and “slums”) that now house a substantial proportion of the urban population in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Although this highlights some important gaps in research, available studies do suggest that urban health inequalities usually begin at birth, are reproduced over a lifetime (often reinforced by undernutrition), and may be recreated through vulnerabilities to climate change and a “double burden” of communicable and non-communicable diseases.
Southeast Asia is a region of enormous social, economic, and political diversity, both across and within countries, shaped by its history, geography, and position as a major crossroad of trade and the movement of goods and services.
Epidemiological transition is a process whereby the predominant causes of death shift from communicable/parasitic diseases to non-communicable diseases. A study of the Medical Certification of Cause of Death in Maharashtra shows that the share of communicable diseases has gone down only slightly while diseases of the circulatory system, neoplasm and injuries have increased significantly.
Climate change and ageing are two of the biggest issues facing humanity this century, yet explicit links between the two are rarely made. As world leaders prepare to negotiate a successor agreement to the Kyoto Protocol in Copenhagen, HelpAge International is calling for the voices of older people in developing countries to be heard.
In this Review we delve into the underlying causes of health disparities between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people and provide an Indigenous perspective to understanding these inequalities. We are able to present only a snapshot of the many research publications about Indigenous health. Our aim is to provide clinicians with a framework to better understand such matters.