HelpAge International Releases Third Global Agewatch Index


Monday, September 28, 2015

HelpAge International has released the third Global AgeWatch Index. It is the only international index that ranks countries according to the social and economic well-being of their older people. This year Canada ranks 5th, down from 4th place in 2014. With an overall score of 84/100, Canada follows Switzerland, Norway, Sweden and Germany.

Using reliable international data sets, the Index provides comparative data on 96 countries, representing 790 million people (91% of those 60+). As well as providing an overall country ranking, the Global AgeWatch Index measures four indicators that have been identified by older persons themselves as key enablers of their wellbeing. Canada ranks 10thth in income security, 4th in health status, 10th in capabilities (employment and education), and 9th in enabling environment.

According to HelpAge Canada Chair, Amy Westland, “While it is very positive that Canada ranks fourth on seniors’ well-being, we must not be complacent. Our aging population is fast becoming a pressing issue that challenges us all – as individuals, communities, businesses, and as governments. We must continue to work together to address the issues that Canadian seniors face daily in this country, including poverty, elder abuse and social isolation, and to do what we can to provide assistance to older persons in need in other parts of the world.”

HelpAge International’s Global AgeWatch Index ranks countries by how well their aging populations are faring. The purpose of the Global AgeWatch Index is to:

  • monitor the well-being of older people across the world
  • Identify and track key trends on aging at country, regional and global levels.
  • provide a framework for governments and international institutions on key data needed to develop policy related to population aging.

The Index tells us that economic growth alone will not improve older people’s well-being and that all countries need to put specific policies in place to address the many implications of aging.

To download the executive summary and the full report: