Confronting Ageism: The voices of baby boomers as to what constitutes ‘healthy ageing’

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract


Background: The world health organisation (WHO 2016) defines healthy ageing as the process of developing and maintaining functional ability to enable well-being in older age. Ironically, the policy of the United Nations, which determined the employment conditions for WHO up until May 2013, required all staff to retire when they reached 60 years. Since then depending on the date at which an employee joined the organisation, they may remain until the age of 65 years and with special permission from the Director of WHO, continue to age 68.

Of interest is the current research culture that describes the physical effects of ageing by using the terms ‘morbidity’ or ‘frailty’ for those over 60 years. While there is much discussion about what constitutes healthy ageing for baby boomers and those who will approach retirement in the next decade, there is little evidence from the perspectives of older people identifying what it means for them to age well.

Aim of the study/presentation: This paper reports the findings of interviews completed with 14 community dwelling seemingly healthy metropolitan Australians aged within the fifth to eight decade as to what they consider as healthy ageing. It is part of a larger study that documented the physical aspects of ageing on older people.

Methods /Results: Thematic analysis generated two main themes capturing healthy ageing from participants’ perspectives. In addition, barriers and enablers to health ageing were documented.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 2019
Event8th International Conference on Ageing and Spirituality: changing cultures of ageing and spirituality - Old Parliament House, Canberra, Australia
Duration: 27 Oct 201930 Oct 2019 (Conference website)


Conference8th International Conference on Ageing and Spirituality
Internet address


  • healthy ageing
  • well-being
  • interviews


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