The ageing of the population is constantly increasing the need for long-term care as it leads to an increase in the number of people with disabilities and dementia

The need for long-term care for Europe's ageing population is increasing due to the rise in disabilities and dementia cases.

The growing population of older people in Europe is expected to lead to an increase in demand for long-term care and health services. This is likely to affect people's access to these services, as well as the quality of care they receive. While demand is expected to increase in the future, stakeholders are increasingly interested in finding innovative solutions to ensure the sustainability of long-term care.
Long-term care in Europe is struggling to keep up with the growing demand for an ageing population which is leading to an increase in disabilities and cases of dementia. This increase has resulted in an increase in the number of disabilities and cases of dementia requiring long-term care. According to World Health Organisation data, approximately 15% of the world's population over 60 years of age suffers from some form of dementia.
Developing effective strategies to manage the increase in this type of disease and disability is critical to improving the quality of life of people with these diseases and their carers.
The increase in disability and dementia cases may make this situation even worse. It is necessary to make adjustments and implement new approaches to manage the problem. Effective strategies are needed to manage this situation and to ensure that the human resources and infrastructure needed to provide care will be available in the future.
Many of these solutions include efforts to prevent or delay the formal dependency of older people on long-term care, either by improving health and well-being or by providing informal carers.

In the introductory article of this issue's Observer section, Marczak and colleagues explore the impact of a wide range of interventions that have been implemented to help address social isolation and loneliness among older people, two issues of growing concern that have been linked to poorer health and well-being.
The research by Marczak and colleagues is an important effort to understand how interventions can help older people cope with social isolation and loneliness, two problems that have a significant impact on their health and well-being. This research highlights the importance of interventions to improve older people's quality of life and suggests a range of practical and effective strategies for implementing these interventions. This research is important for health professionals and care providers working with older people and can be used to improve their practice.
Personalisation or person-centred approach refers to the provision of care that takes into account the individual needs and preferences of the person receiving care, rather than treating them as part of a system. The person-centred approach recognises that each person is unique and requires different needs and priorities in their care. This can improve outcomes for people receiving care, as tailoring care to their individual needs can lead to more effective and efficient interventions.
The article by Frisina Doetter and colleagues points out that although the person-centred approach is promising, the findings from studies investigating its effectiveness are mixed. Therefore, policymakers should consider additional solutions, such as digital health, that can help with management.
Individualised or person-centred approaches to improving outcomes for people with long-term care needs are evaluated in the following article by Frisina Doetter and colleagues. The authors suggest that mixed findings on the effectiveness of personalisation place the onus on policy makers to develop additional solutions, which are likely to include digital health.
In two articles, they focus on studying policies and strategies to ensure that the future supply of care workers can meet demand. Le Bihan and colleagues begin by mapping the different types of policy measures that have been implemented across Europe to support informal carers to provide care for as long as they wish, highlighting the many challenges in balancing the needs of carers with those of dependents.
Le Bihan and his team's research focuses on analysing the policy measures in place in Europe to support informal carers, i.e. care provided by non-professional carers to dependent people. Research shows that informal care is essential to meet the needs of dependent people, but often causes stress and insecurity for carers.
The researchers analyse the various measures that have been implemented in different European countries to support informal carers. These measures include the provision of education and training for carers, financial support, professional support and various other services and programmes. At the same time, the researchers highlight the challenges related to informal care and carers.
Sowa-Kofta and her co-authors explore the issue of the migrant workforce in the long-term care sector and highlight the importance of transnational migration in this sector. However, they point out that social policies specifically regulating this type of service provision are rarely adopted, and this has serious consequences for migrants and their families who depend on these services.
 An article looking at Alzheimer's disease, which is the most common form of dementia. This research addresses the issue of long-term care and Alzheimer's disease. It is reported that the demand for long-term care is increasing in Europe due to the increase in the ageing population and the increase in disabilities and cases of dementia. It points out that early diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease is crucial for access to care and support. In addition, the implementation of programmes with individualised or person-centred approaches to improve outcomes for people with long-term care needs and the reasons for late or under-diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease are being studied. Boada et al. interweave the reasons for delayed or underdiagnosis of Alzheimer's disease and highlight how early diagnosis is a critical step in accessing care and support. They then consider innovative ways to address this challenge.
In the article on the Netherlands, De Jong and Brabers analyse the change of insurance provider in the context of social security. They present the rate of change over time and explain the reasons why people change insurance provider and how the change affects the quality and access to health care in the country.
Second, in Germany, Busse and Blümel analyse the role of prices and expenditure on the quality and efficiency of the German health care system, and present suggestions for improvements.
Third, the next country covered is Spain, where Hernandez-Quevedo and her co-authors present the challenges facing the Spanish health care system, particularly in the area of financing and organization of care.
How France is addressing the challenges of its health system. In particular, they mention the need to improve primary care, address the problem of a shortage of doctors in certain regions of the country, the need to modernise and digitalise the health system and ensure the sustainability of the health system through cost management and the development of prevention. In addition, they refer to the ongoing debate in France on the elimination of pharmaceutical sales on the Internet and the need for changes in the payment system for pharmaceutical purchases.
In Switzerland, Sottas and his colleagues examine how the shortage of general practitioners has led to the implementation of the role of advanced practice nurses in primary care. They present some pilot projects currently underway and assess the benefits and challenges observed so far.
In Finland, where discussions are taking place on centralisation in the organisation of health systems. Tynkkynen et al. detail the slow process of merging municipalities in Finland since the early 2000s. They report that municipality mergers were aimed at improving the efficiency and effectiveness of local government, and reducing costs for taxpayers. However, mergers have not been easy due to the complexity of the structures and interests of the municipalities, as well as resistance from residents.
Mergers across Europe, which involve the merging of administrative divisions, are often met with opposition from local populations, because they often mean a loss of local autonomy and offer fewer opportunities to participate in policy-making.
In their article, Richardson and Sheiman present the new national plan to strengthen primary care in the Russian Federation. They analyze the need to improve access to primary health care in Russia and explain the steps to be taken to achieve this goal. They provide data on the state of primary care in Russia and analyse the constraints to its development in that country. In addition, they explain the proposed changes to Russia's health care system and the ways in which primary care provision in the country can be improved.
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