Development of Accreditation Approach of Elderly Care Service Providers: Experience from East and West

Development of Accreditation Approach of Elderly Care Service Providers: Experience from East and West

Artie W. Ng (The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong), Tiffany C. H. Leung (The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong) and Jacky C. K. Ho (City University of Macau, Macau)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-2633-9.ch007
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Abstract

The purpose of this book chapter is to explore the similarities and differences in the development of performance measures and accreditation systems for the quality assurance of elderly care service providers of Asian and Western origins, focusing on Hong Kong, Macau, Australia and Canada. Building on a proposed theoretical framework, this study utilizes a multiple-case study method to examine the influencing factors for the accreditation approach adopted by a jurisdiction. The findings suggest that the quality assurance of the elderly care service operators of the Asian origins as selected appears to lag behind those of the Western countries and undergo their own peculiar paths of development. Thus, Hong Kong and Macau could learn from the practical experience of Australia and Canada in terms of their concerted approaches for funding, accreditation and assessments under an increasingly market-driven service sector in which the well-being of the end-users needs to be adequately protected.
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Background

The Aging Population and the Elderly Care Service Providers

The aging population has become one of the major transnational social issues to be addressed by policy makers. The global aging indicator shows that the number of people aged 60 or above is approximately 901 million, and this number is expected to grow to 2.1 billion by 2050, as the life expectancy rate will gradually increase from 70 years in 2015 to 77 years in 2050 (The United Nations Population Fund, 2015). The gap between older people and children under 15 will be 1.6 billion people, and approximately 48% of the retirement-age population does not receive any pension fund (The United Nations Population Fund, 2015). The aging of the Western population is mainly due to declining fertility rates, the aging of the baby boom generation born in the post-World War II era, and increased longevity in general (De Meijer et al., 2013).

Policy makers and health care planners have conducted various health-related and population-based studies to address issues pertinent to the aging population. These contemporary health issues could be viewed as social concerns that require insights from multiple disciplines, including political, economic, religious, legal, technological and medical perspectives (Lewis, 2002). Other factors that have also been taken into account include national income growth, new health and medical technologies for the elderly, and the social costs of health care to maintain the quality of life and sustain the lifespan of the local population (De Meijer et al., 2013). As such, substantial public and health expenditures could be required for allocation to resources pertinent to an economy with an aging population.

The sector of global healthcare service providers grew by 4.6% to reach a total revenue of US$ 7,142 billion in 2013, presenting a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.8% between 2009 and 2013, and this sector is predicted to grow at a rate of 6.1% in the period between 2013 and 2018 (MarketLine, 2014). The Americas, Europe and Asia-Pacific accounted for 49%, 28.6% and 20.7% of the global healthcare provider sector in 2013, respectively, (MarketLine, 2014). The average health expenditures increased significantly from 5% of the GDP in 1970 to almost 10% in 2015 in OECD countries (OECD, 2015). The Asia-Pacific and European sectors grew with compound annual growth rates (CAGRs) of 8.4 and 2.6% in 2013 to reach US$ 1,477 billion and US$ 2,039 billion, respectively (MarketLine, 2014). The substantial growth of the health care provider sector is a boom for the aging business (medical and health) and related and supporting industries, such as insurance, finance and recreation. Health care will become more connected to daily life via mobile phones and social media (Ernst and Young, 2015).

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