About 1.5 million elderly people benefit from welfare hinh anh 1Medical workers give advice to the elderly (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – About 1.5 million elderly people in Vietnam are benefiting from regular social allowances which have had positive impacts on the material and spiritual life of the targeted group.

The Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs (MoLISA) and the UN Population Fund held a workshop in Hanoi on August 31 to review the five-year implementation of the Law on the Elderly.

MoLISA Deputy Minister Nguyen Trong Dam said Vietnam’s population is aging rapidly. Old people aged at least 60 accounted for 10.5 percent of the population in 2014, a figure forecast to reach 20 percent by 2038.

Approved in 2009, the Law on the Elderly creates a legal framework for ensuring senior citizens’ rights and interests. It is also a foundation to devise policies for an aged society in the future.

He noted that 78 percent of the senior citizens and 72 percent of the families with elderly members know about the law and old people’s rights, which indicate strong improvement in public awareness.

As a result, more than 90 percent of the targeted group has had their essential daily needs of food, clothes and accommodation ensured while 87.6 percent has their healthcare demand met.

Dam said welfare allowance is a measure ensuring the material life of the elderly, especially low-income ones. Each year, local authorities hold longevity celebrations for more than 1 million old people on average. Senior citizens also get support when they suffer from illness or on the occasion of traditional festivals.

The deputy minister also pointed to shortcomings in enforcing the Law on the Elderly, calling for continued overhauling of relevant policies. Local authorities also need to thoroughly understand their role in carrying out the elderly-related regulations and ensure resources for the work.-VNA