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Jamaican Population Ageing Rapidly

Prof. Denise Eldemire-Shearer, Chair of the CCRP and Director of the Mona Ageing and Wellness Centre shares her lastest findings on Ageing in Jamaica at CCRP's Third Anniversary Event.

Prof Eldemire-Shearer speaks on Ageing in JamaicaJamaican Population Ageing Rapidly: The Jamaican population (as part of the Caribbean population) is ageing rapidly, reflecting a worldwide phenomenon. The majority (71.7%) of our senior citizens own their own homes, and most report being financially independent. Chronic diseases are a serious problem among this age group, defined as 60 years and older by the United Nations. Among Jamaican seniors, 65.4% suffer from either diabetes (“sugar”) or hypertension (high blood pressure) and 22% have both.

These findings were shared by Professor Denise Eldemire Shearer, Director of the Mona Ageing and Wellness Centre, at the third Anniversary Lifestyle Expo of the Caribbean Community of Retired Persons (CCRP). The event took place recently at the Chinese Benevolent Association on Old Hope Road, under the theme “Seniors Power on the Rise”.

The Professor, who chairs the CCRP, explained that these preliminary findings were from a recent study entitled “Ageing in Jamaica today and the implications” over a one year period, completed in 2012. It involved a survey of 2,943 seniors in Kingston, St. Andrew, St. Catherine and St. Thomas. It was carried out by the Mona Ageing and Wellness Centre, and funded by the National Health Fund. Primary aims of the study were to assess the health and social status of older persons in Jamaica, and to identify their needs.