The influence of population aging in public health

Nélio Veiga, Patrícia Couto, Adélia Fernandes, Alexia Oliveira, Daniela Gomes, Daniela Santos, Odete Amaral, Carlos Pereira, Pedro Pereira, Inês Coelho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review



Introduction: Population aging is one of the greatest challenges in contemporary public health. Thus, one of the consequences of this dynamic is a greater demand for health services. The aim of the present research consists in explaining the main topics that justify the fact that the increase of population-aging worldwide influences public health strategies applied. Materials and methods: To carry out this review article the search strategies included electronic databases, such as PubMed, Cochrane Library and Science Direct, reference lists of articles, and selected textbooks. Articles and textbooks used in this study were mainly reached by using the following keywords: “Public health”; “Population-ageing “; “Global Aging”; “Elderly” and “Health”. Selection criteria included articles published from 1985 to the present year of 2018. At the end of the search, 11 scientific articles were selected. Results and Discussion: The physical / biological, psychological and social changes associated with the elderly leads to decrease of health, withdrawal from the labor market and several unfavorable situations, which cannot be controlled. In this context, the elderly seek to find support in the family, neighborhood, friends and institutions that will influence their quality of life. Therefore, the path of Public Health has three essential points: first, health promotion and primary prevention, which requires a lot of health education to develop healthy living habits and improve understanding of the aging process; secondly, appropriate health treatments, including professionals trained in Geriatrics and Gerontology, aiming at early diagnosis and interdisciplinary administration of diseases, seeking to preserve functional capacity; and finally, the rehabilitation of the functions committed, aiming at functional independence and mental autonomy, in any type of incapacity or limitation. Conclusions: Aging is a challenge to be integrated by Public Health and the vulnerability inherent in the elderly should never be seen in a unique way. Thus, we believe in the importance of different forms of support, not only in terms of assistance, clinical treatment and rehabilitation, but also in the implementation of public policies and disease prevention actions, as well as health promotion of the population of integral form.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-5
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Research Journal of Public Health
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2018


  • Public health
  • Population-ageing
  • Global aging
  • Elderly
  • Health


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