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A normal age in the future: How do centenarians live in Germany?

A normal age in the future: How do centenarians live in Germany?


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Longevity conference: Charité scientists report on the latest findings
Average life expectancy has risen continuously across Germany in the past decades. More and more people are reaching an extremely old age. At a conference on the topic of longevity, scientists from Charité University Medicine Berlin discuss how life prospects and the care situation for very old people in Germany are.

On the basis of several studies carried out, the Charité scientists will present the development of the life prospects of centenarians, their care situation and the resulting effects on the life situation of relatives, reports the Charité University Medicine Berlin. The conference "Durable - Health and Participation of a Population Group with a Future" takes place in the Federal Ministry for Family, Seniors, Women and Youth.

Over 1,800 centenarians in Berlin alone
According to the Charité, "there are currently more than 1,800 people in Berlin alone who have reached the age of 100." So far, this predominantly female group of centenarians has received little attention in research. This is despite the fact that, according to the experts, it represents "the fastest growing population group in Germany." In a series of studies, scientists from the Charité Institute for Medical Sociology and Rehabilitation Science have therefore examined the life perspective of very old people, from the point of view of the providers , the relatives and from the perspective of the long-lived themselves. Three of these studies will be presented at today's conference.

Expertise at the very edge of life
According to the Charité, the first two studies funded by the Center for Quality in Nursing focused on interviews with centenarians and their relatives. The head of aging research at the Institute of Medical Sociology, Dr. Dagmar Dräger, emphasizes that "the life experience of a whole century, supplemented by many years of experience with health restrictions for oneself and others, as well as death and death in social networks, make centenarians special experts at the very edge of the human lifespan". According to the Charité expert, the survey of relatives also provided an insight "into cross-generational relationships, the care situation of centenarians and the resulting burdens and needs".

Ethical and social perspectives of longevity
For the third study, which was funded by the Knappschaft health insurance, the scientists analyzed the health insurance data in order to obtain information on diagnoses and health care for very old people who live at home or in care facilities. According to the Charité, the current conference, which is funded by the Federal Ministry for Family, Seniors, Women and Youth, aims to promote an interdisciplinary discourse on ethical and social perspectives on longevity. (fp)

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