Recognising that the effect of population ageing can be overstated, we set out to ask what effect an older population will have on demand for health and care services.  Here, we explain why typical approaches ‘overlook the fact that rising life expectancy makes … older people “younger”, healthier, and fitter than their peers in earlier cohorts’. 

This report is the first in a set of three reports produced by the Strategy Unit that each address a crucial aspect of commissioner planning for acute services. As a collective, these three reports provide a useful and robust framework on which local commissioning organisations can base their strategic planning.