European Journal of Ageing

, Volume 2, Issue 3, pp 216–224 | Cite as

Future demand for formal long-term care in Sweden

Original Investigation


Ageing population will have a significant effect on demand for human resources in health care and social care for the older people. Here we are presenting, using different scenarios, how projected demographic development may influence the demand for formal long-term care (LTC) for the people older than 65 years in Sweden 2000–2030. Our method uses information on utilisation of current services per gender and age group, demographic projections of number of older people per gender and age group and assumptions on health status changes per gender and age group. Our assumptions on health status changes were based on estimates from Swedish National Survey of Living Conditions, covering 32,502 observations during the period 1975–1999. The assumption that trends in severe ill-health in Sweden between 1975 and 1999 will continue (meaning expected improvements in age/gender-specific health and functional ability among the older people) results in the projected increase in the demand by year 2030 being almost halved, compared with an estimate that is based on unchanged age/gender-specific health and functional ability. The assessment of future demand for LTC for the people older than 65 years should involve extrapolations based on expected changes in health status, as well as the question how decreasing mortality incorporated into population forecasts is to be associated with future trends on severe morbidity/disability.


Demand for LTC Human resources Health status Mortality Ageing Sweden 



We thank two anonymous referees and Editor-in-Chief. This paper was completed during Ilija Batljan’s PhD’s studies at the Department of Social Work at Stockholm University. He is especially grateful to professor Mats Thorslund for valuable comments and careful reading of different versions of this manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Social Work Stockholm University; and Ministry of Health and Social AffairsStockholmSweden
  2. 2.Stockholm Gerontology CentreStockholmSweden

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