Concerted Government effort could improve health in old age, finds Lords Committee

15 Jan 2021 12:49 PM

Ill health in old age is a growing problem, and the Government’s Ageing Society Grand Challenge is not on track to achieve its mission of five extra years of healthy living by 2035. Urgent action is needed to increase healthy life expectancy and reduce health inequalities in old age – emphasised by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Image representing news article


Concerted action is required in order to increase the number of years spent in good health in old age. Health services should be coordinated to better treat people with multiple age-related illnesses, and technology and services should be deployed more widely to support independent living in old age. More effective public health advice and strategic government interventions can support life-long healthy living. Recent scientific discoveries reveal underlying processes of ageing, and the UK could play a leading role in developing treatments to address the root causes of age-related illnesses.

Committee Chair

The Chair of the Committee, Lord Patel recently said:

“The Committee found that the Government needs to urgently address the key issues of reducing health inequalities, implementing health system reforms and promoting lifestyle changes.

“Furthermore, technologies can be better utilised to help people live independently for longer.

“The Government must act now to increase support for the exciting new scientific research that targets the underlying processes of ageing. Treatments are being developed that could improve health without the need to treat multiple separate illnesses.”

Key recommendations

The Committee sets out a range of recommendations across science, technology and health services to improve health in old age:

Further information