2 Oct 2013

NZ ranked 7th in UN index on treatment for elderly

5:27 am on 2 October 2013

New Zealand is ranked seventh out of 91 countries in an index measuring how well elderly people are treated.

The UN Global Agewatch Index puts Sweden, Norway and Germany at the top of the list, with Afghanistan, Tanzania and Pakistan at the bottom.

Behind New Zealand were the United States in eighth place, Ireland 12th, Britain 13th and Australia 14th.

The study warns many countries do not have adequate support in place for their ageing populations. It says by 2050, older people will outnumber children under 15 for the first time, with most of the elderly in developing countries.

In the health status category for elderly people, New Zealand was placed third. It was ranked seventh in employment and education, but 43rd in income security.

The index was released to mark the UN's Day of Older Persons. The BBC reports researchers used 13 different indicators - including income and employment, health provision, education, and environment.