Real-world solutions to help facilitate equity in healthy aging

Aging Readiness & Competitiveness (ARC) 4.0

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Faster and faster, our global populations are aging — especially in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs).

LMICs are not alone in facing the persistent and unfair differences experienced by older adults often based on gender, ethnicity, ability, geography, and socio-economic status. These inequalities are a risk to all our countries. However, the greater risk is inaction.

Facilitating equity in healthy aging is possible when we come together as a global community. AARP's Aging Readiness & Competitiveness (ARC) 4.0 report, with data and analysis by Economist Impact, highlights a knowledge base of real-world solutions.

The ARC 4.0 report spotlights solutions and leading practices from the public and private sectors, civil society and individuals, and focuses on achieving equitable health in a rapidly aging world.

Download the full report

Explore case studies below
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See how disparities in healthy aging are impacting LMICs

Over 1 billion
people globally

age 65 and older by 2050

Source: UN, Economist Impact

19x greater
income inequality

between top 10% of individuals
and the bottom 50%

Source: World Inequality Database, Economist Impact

Women 65+ are
44% less likely

to be in the workforce than men

Source: International Labour Organization, Economist Impact

50+ population contribute
35% local GDP
on average

Source: Global Longevity Economy Outlook report

What solutions can we implement together as a global community?

Explore actions by segments of society

Public Sector

  • Enhance national legislation on protecting equal rights
  • Design and implement stronger comprehensive national aging policies
  • Expand and refine existing physical and institutional infrastructure
  • Invest in and lead efforts to collect data on older populations and healthy aging

Private Sector

  • Design and provide products and services that are inclusive of older adults
  • Create income-generating opportunities for marginalized groups, such as older women
  • Incorporate age into Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion policies
  • Address employees' health and wellbeing by improving work-life balance and paid-time off allocations

Civil Society

Drive collaborative, grassroots and community-based efforts to promote health equity for older adults



Contribute by helping to build an
age-friendly society by combatting ageism and reporting instances of elder abuse


Explore 10 countries with some of the most rapidly aging populations

Learn how they're combatting aging disparities
Case Study

Advocating for older persons throughout the country is evident through non-governmental organization (NGO) programs, such as "adopt a grandparent," a campaign created during the pandemic to pair young neighbors with older Bolivians needing food.

Case Study

In 2020, the government ratified the African Union Protocol on the rights of older adults, making a commitment in the wake of COVID-19 to the wellbeing of this growing group.

Case Study

Introducing one of the largest government health insurance programs in the world.

Case Study

Creating a clear mandate against age discrimination and also through its contributory and non-contributory pension programs.

Case Study

Promoting poverty alleviation through the country's flagship social protection program, Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty.

Case Study

Providing health-related support to older persons in their communities through the Village Health Volunteers program.

Case Study

Establishing a national policy for older people — among the first of Caribbean countries.

Case Study

Struggling to gain momentum on existing policies, such as the Elderly Committee, due in part to a lack of the political will.

Case Study

Expanding access to education, helping to eliminate socio-economic disparities across the lifespan.

Case Study

The 2022 National Health Insurance Authority Act aims to expand health coverage for all Nigerians, with a particular emphasis on the basic needs of older persons.

A snapshot of how 5 leading practices drive equity in healthy aging

Cash transfers
  • Cash transfers in Bangladesh: Old-Age Allowance (OAA) and Widow, Deserted and Destitute Women Allowance (WA) programs
  • Mexico's pioneering conditional cash transfer scheme: Progresa-Oportunidades-Prospera (Prospera)
  • Reducing poverty through targeted cash transfers: Human Development Bond (Bono de Desarrollo Humano, BDH) in Ecuador
  • Creating income-generation opportunities for rural artisans: Someone Somewhere in Mexico
  • Accelerating women’s economic empowerment: Mission Shakti in Odisha, India
  • Improving employability and digital literacy for adults 50+: SilverTech in Argentina
to health care
and home care
  • Expanding access to health care for rural communities: National Health Extension Program (HEP) in Ethiopia
  • Improving rural health care: Comprehensive Care Model (CCM) for Rural Health in Sumapaz, Colombia
  • Enhancing health care services in indigenous communities: Brazil’s Indigenous Community Health Agent Professionalization Programme (ICHAPP)
  • Improving access to home care for older adults: Buurtzorg Neighborhood Care in China
Health care
  • Community-driven expansion of health care access: Kaundu Community-Based Health Insurance (CBHI) in Malawi
  • Subsidizing health insurance for households experiencing poverty: India's Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana (RSBY) Health Insurance Scheme
and self-advocacy
  • Building community: Older People's Self-help Groups (SHGs) in Serbia
  • Empowering older adults: Older People's Associations (OPAs) in Bangladesh

Download the full report

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Click for individual country profiles and leading practices

Note: The highlighted country profiles and leading practice areas reflect information used for the purpose of the ARC 4.0 report. Omission of a country or practice area does not mean lack of innovative work in a particular nation or region.