BEIJING, PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC OF CHINA (14 December 2018) — The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved a $150 million loan to help develop a comprehensive elderly care system in Yichang in central-eastern Hubei province to showcase ways that other cities in the People’s Republic of China (PRC) can look after their aging citizens.

“The project in Yichang will serve as a model for a comprehensive elderly care system in the country and help promote the provision of suitable care for older people with good facility design and efficient services,” said ADB Senior Social Sector Specialist Ms. Hiroko Uchimura-Shiroishi.

The PRC has the largest elderly population in the world and the growing demand for elderly care far outpaces existing services. In 2017, 22% of Yichang’s population of 4.14 million was above the age of 60, exceeding the national average of 14.3%. Developing a suitable and efficient long-term elderly care system is a huge challenge faced by many municipalities in the country.

To address these problems, the project will improve home- and community-based care services and facilities, including for those suffering dementia; build a geriatric hospital and nursing home; and help develop a management scheme to ensure proper services and monitoring.

The project is in line with the Government of the PRC’s goal to develop a three-tiered elderly care system comprised of home-, community-, and residential-based care services. It also supports the government’s Healthy China 2030 strategy that highlights health as a critical development challenge.

ADB is committed to achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific, while sustaining its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty. Established in 1966, it is owned by 67 members—48 from the region. In 2017, ADB operations totaled $32.2 billion, including $11.9 billion in cofinancing.

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