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‘Baby boomers’ enter old age, changing society and the economy

Yao Minji

Yang Quanfu, 55, recently took his 89-year-old mother for an evaluation to determine her need for some level of assisted care. He is torn between sending her to an elderly care home or tapping into Shanghai’s expanding in-home care services

Yang admitted his filial duty weighs on him.

“I’m the only son of five children, so traditionally I should be the one most responsible for her care,” he told Shanghai Daily. “It may sound a bit selfish, but I also want to enjoy my own pending retirement. I certainly don’t expect my child to take care of me someday. He simply couldn’t afford to.”

Yang’s hesitation encapsulates the country’s changing demographics and attitudes toward elderly care as the baby boom of the 1960s and 1970s retires, adding to China’s rapidly increasing aged population.

TouTiao, one of China’s most popular mobile news platforms, did a survey of online search words, broken down by age, last year. For Yang’s generation, the top search was “pension calculator.” Other platforms also found top search phrases for that age group included “health care,” “wellness” and “health food.”

Yang, who gets most of his information from the Internet, said he commonly reads articles about how to have a healthy lifestyle, how to plan for retirement and where to plan holidays.

Read more at Shanghai Daily

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