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St. John of God Order Represented on European JPI on Demographic Change

The work of the newly-instituted European Office of the Hospitaller Order of St John of God has been enriched by an important function forming part of the Joint Programme Initiatives – JPI, promoted by the European Union. These initiatives are the outcome of a specific EU strategy to address the main social, climatic, environmental and health care challenges that Europe must address in the next few decades – challenges of such breadth and complexity that they cannot be effectively addressed and resolved by actions taken purely at the national level.

Approval has recently been given to the request by Dr Carlo Gallasso, the representative of the Hospitaller Order in Brussels, to join the Societal Advisory Board of the Joint Programme Initiative on Demographic Change, a European action focusing specifically on extending life expectancy and on the progressive ageing of the European population.

For it is predicted that the number of Europe’s citizens over the age of 65 will double by 2050, while the population aged over 80 will increase three-fold from the present number: unless these trends are properly addressed in advance, they will have huge repercussions in terms not only of the economy and pensions, but also with regard to welfare and health care.

The purpose of the JPI on Demographic Change is to analyse the scope and extent of these phenomena and to draw up a strategic joint research plan, and lay down commonly agreed policies for Europe-wide implementation. This initiative is already supported by 15 European countries, and has been placed under the oversight of a Steering Committee, one of whose members is Professor Paolo Maria Rossini, the Scientific Director of AFaR.

The Advisory Board will meet for the first time on December 12, in Brussels, at which Dr Galasso will report on the work being performed by the European Centres of the Hospitaller Order in the fields of geriatric care and welfare.


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