Intensive Care for the Elderly: Current and Future Concerns

  • H. Wunsch
  • A. T. Jones
  • D. C. Scales
Conference paper


Around the world, the elderly population is growing faster than the total population, and this difference in growth rates is increasing [1]. In 1950, 1 in every 20 individuals was aged 65 years or older; by the year 2050, this figure is projected to increase to nearly 1 in 6 (Fig. 1) [1]. These population trends represent a looming crisis for healthcare systems around the world, and understanding patterns of care and outcomes for the ageing segment of the population is vital when planning for future healthcare needs in all countries.
Fig. 1.

Percentage of the population aged 65 and over: world and development regions 1950–2050 (data from United Nations [1])


Intensive Care Unit Mechanical Ventilation Acute Lung Injury Intensive Care Patient Skilled Nursing Facility 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • H. Wunsch
    • 1
  • A. T. Jones
    • 2
  • D. C. Scales
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of AnesthesiologyColumbia Presbyterian Medical CenterNew YorkUSA
  2. 2.Department of Intensive Care MedicineSt Thomas HospitalLondonUK
  3. 3.Department of Critical CareSunnybrook Health Sciences CentreTorontoCanada

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