Life expectancy in Japan, South Korea, and much of urban China has now outpaced that of the United States and other high-income countries. With this triumph of longevity, however, comes a rise in the burden of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) like diabetes and hypertension, reducing healthy life years for individuals in these aging populations, as well as challenging the healthcare systems they rely on for appropriate care.
The challenges and disparities are even more pressing in low- and middle-income economies, such as rural China and India. Moreover, the COVID-19 pandemic has underscored the vulnerability to newly emerging pathogens of older adults suffering from NCDs, and the importance of building long-term, resilient health systems.
What strategies have been tried to prevent NCDs—the primary cause of morbidity and mortality — as well as to screen for early detection, raise the quality of care, improve medication adherence, reduce unnecessary hospitalizations and increase “value for money” in health spending?
Fourteen concise chapters cover multiple aspects of policy initiatives for healthy aging and economic research on chronic disease control in diverse health systems — from cities such as Singapore and Hong Kong to large economies such as Japan, India, and China.
Karen Eggleston is Senior Fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies (FSI) at Stanford University and Director of the Stanford Asia Health Policy Program at the Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center at FSI. She is also a Fellow with the Center for Innovation in Global Health at Stanford University School of Medicine, and a Faculty Research Fellow of the National Bureau of Economic Research.