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date: 21 June 2018

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines issues arising from an aging population, particularly those affecting the population, community, family, and individuals. It considers the legal and policy challenges relating to an aging population, along with the implications of responses to such challenges for the regulation of clinical care at the individual level and the structure and financing of healthcare delivery for older persons as a group. The chapter provides a demographic background on the elderly, with emphasis on the changing epidemiology of aging and its disability consequences as well as long-term services and supports for the aged. It looks at adverse cognitive changes associated with aging and relevant law relating to older persons’ impaired medical decision-making. It also describes best practices in clinical geriatrics before concluding with an explanation of how physician perceptions of legal standards of care undermine efforts to provide more rational care to the elderly through best practices initiatives.

Keywords: aging, financing, healthcare, older persons, epidemiology, disability, cognitive changes, best practices, clinical geriatrics, standards of care

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