Vietnam concerned by ageing population

Vietnam's population was ageing rapidly and had entered the "ageing phase", with many challenges to be addressed including income insecurity, inadequate social protection and limited healthcare capacity, according to Viet Nam News.

The Viet Nam Ageing Survey in 2011 showed that more than 70 per cent of older people were still working with support from their descendants and families, and only nearly 30 per cent of them had pensions and social allowances.

Agricultural land is gradually being cut back, and natural disasters are also taking their toll on elderly people’s incomes. More than 17 per cent of the elderly live under the poverty line.

“Up to 10 per cent of old people live alone, and that puts them at a disadvantage because their families should be there to support them,” said Nguyen Van Tan, deputy director of the General Office for Population and Family Planning.

The survey also showed that healthcare service for the elderly was also lacking. Only 13 per cent of elderly people in rural areas had access to healthcare, while 23 per cent received medical help in urban areas.