At present, the percentage of the elderly population in the US is rapidly growing. Additionally, up to 80 percent of the aged population suffer from at least one chronic disease (Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, 2010). Research shows that the number of old adults aged above 65 years will double to reach a 71 million mark by 2030 (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2009). With this rapid increment, the US public health system is subjected to extensive implications, because exceptional interventions will be needed to meet the distinct needs of the elderly people. The public healthcare expenditure is expected to increase significantly, because more efforts will be employed to counter the chronic diseases. Special consideration should be given to the health of the aging population so that the distressing outcomes such as disability, inferior life quality, and escalating healthcare costs can be efficiently controlled. This justifies the needs for efficient public health initiatives to help reduce the cases of disability and preventable illnesses among the elderly. The general public can help improve the health of the elderly by contributing to the formulation and implementation of healthcare strategies and assisting the affected elderly living in their midst (Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, 2010).
There are various public healthcare strategies that can be implemented to reduce the incidences of chronic diseases among the elderly. Depression is a common challenge for many older adults. The healthcare system should formulate and implement strategies to assist in the diagnosis and treatment of depression cases. Secondly, it is worth to consider the promotion of caregiver interventions. Community-based strategies should be disseminated to encourage and improve caregiver services to the aged population (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2009). This would help to improve their well-being and the quality of life.
Finally, it is important to address end-of-life issues. The desires of the aged population at the end of their lives should be given a keen attention through a proper documentation. The public health system should aim at creating and raising awareness on the importance of end-of-life planning. This can be done by providing the aged people and their families with the appropriate information and professional guidance.
In conclusion, it is evident that in the US the number of the aging population is rapidly increasing. Aging is equivalent to the increased incidences of chronic diseases. For this reason, special interventions are required to improve healthcare services and the quality of life for the elderly. The practical public health measures include treating depression among the elderly, promoting caregiver interventions, and addressing end-of-life issues.
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