Policy Implications and Applications Across Health and Aged Care Reform with Baby Boomer Ageing - from Age and Dementia Friendly Communities to Palliative Care


This chapter highlights policy application of health economic principles and methods introduced and developed in this book to current health and aged care issues and areas of policy reform challenges internationally, illustrated predominantly with Australian policy-related examples. In particular reform challenges posed for successful ageing of the baby boomer population within increasingly constrained budgets and consequent imperatives for being more efficient in use of existing technology and pricing and integration of new technology and related research, reimbursement and regulatory decisions.

In meeting health and aged care system reform challenges of successful ageing within budget constraints, the clear empirical and theoretical advantages of universal access public systems are initially considered, before nevertheless turning to the need for related reform in the face of an ageing baby boomer cohort for:

  • (i) Age- and dementia-friendly community policies to promote active ageing while delaying or preventing the need for aged care and nursing home facilities;
  • (ii) Dementia-friendly aged care and nursing home design;
  • (iii) Inexpensive palliative care options that reflect palliative care primary preferences for having the ability to finalise affairs in their community of choice while minimising family and carer distress; and
  • (iv) Funding mechanisms that provide active incentives for budget-constrained health and aged care system optimisation of quality of care rather than for minimum cost per service quality of care, cost shifting and cream skimming, with current case-mix funding methods.

Successful ageing without breaking the budget requires such policy reform is undertaken and involves research and practice comparisons assessing best use of existing technologies at factor prices and better integration and more appropriate pricing across existing and new technology.

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017 279

S. Eckermann, Health Economics from Theory to Practice,

DOI 10.1007/978-3-319-50613-5_12

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