Average Turk lives 58 out of 80 years life in good health: Expert
The average lifespan of a Turkish citizen has risen to 80, with one living a healthy life until 58 and then struggling with a chronic disease afterwards, an expert has warned the parliamentary commission on elderly health.
According to Banu Ekinci, the head of the Chronical Diseases and Elderly Health Department of the General Directorate of Public Health, an institution affiliated with the country’s Health Ministry, the lifespan in Turkey has increased, but it is “not enough.”
“A newborn girl is estimated to live until 80 and a newborn boy until 78,” said Ekinci in her presentation to the commission members, and said: “However, a life in good health is lived only until 58. Then one goes to pieces and spends the remaining lifetime struggling with diseases.”
A latest survey showed that one third of people in Turkey suffer at least one chronic disease.
Ekinci added: “The rate of people between the ages of 45 and 54 having a chronic disease is 31 percent. The percentage of those over 65 having at least three chronic diseases is 14.3.”
Starting from this, the expert informed the lawmakers that the directorate will start a new comprehensive study.
“With the help of the family physicians, we will be monitoring some 23,000 elderly people,” she noted.
The results of the survey aimed to “x-ray the elderly people’s health situations” will be announced in January 2023.
She highlighted the importance of the study saying, “We need to figure this out because the elderly people use 32 percent of the total health services available in the country.”
Pınar Koçatakan, the head of the health services department of the general directorate of the public hospitals, was another expert holding the floor in the commission presentation.
Informing the MPs about the health services at home, she said, “Around 110,000 people are examined [by local physicians] in their homes through around 267,000 visits.”
Some 49 percent of this number are those between the ages of 65 and 85 and some 26 percent are over 86.
People with “neurological diseases” topped the “patients examined at home” list. Then came the people with “cardio-vascular problems.”
“Orthopedics and traumatology” are third on the list, she informed.