Press Release
November 19, 2011


Senator Edgardo J. Angara is pushing for the creation of the Philippine Institute for Aging, a research institute focused on giving Filipinos longer and better lives.

The Institute will be attached to the National Institutes of Health, and will be under the University of the Philippines Manila, which also houses the country's premier medical school.

"Even though the current Philippine population is relatively young with an average age of 26.6, it will also age over time," said Angara. "Many Western countries are now facing this challenge. We must likewise be prepared to meet it."

There was a recorded total of 6.4 million senior citizens in the Philippines in 2010, equal to 6.8 percent of the population. Projections show that the proportion will increase to 8.7 percent by 2020, 11.2 percent by 2030 and 13.8 percent by 2040. Thirty years from now, our elderly will total 19.6 million--a 208 percent growth from the present.

Angara also cited the need to make infrastructure more elderly-friendly by building more modern transportation systems, health facilities, and even adjusting consumer products and recreational activities to meet this inevitable demographic phenomenon.

"We cannot simply rely on Western models as we prepare for the graying of our population," said Angara. "We need our own think-thank that will study aging as an integrated, multi-disciplinary science in the context of our own culture and demographic peculiarities."

Angara authored the Senior Citizens Act, which instituted the 20 percent discount currently being enjoyed by those age 60 and above in the country.

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