January 16, 2015 6:03 am JST
Serving seniors

Japanese boomers to face acute caregiver shortage in fiscal 2025

TOKYO -- Demand for professional caregivers in Japan will outstrip supply by 300,000 or so in fiscal 2025, when the last of the baby boomers turn 75, according to the labor ministry.

     Caregivers for older people totaled around 1.77 million in fiscal 2013, including part-timers. These demanding, relatively low-paid positions are hard to fill, leading to chronic shortages. The ratio of employment offers to job seekers in senior care came to 2.51 last November, compared with 1.12 for all industries.

     Roughly 5.64 million elderly people are in need of home or institutional care. Up to 2.5 million caregivers will be needed in fiscal 2025, while the actual figure will amount to 2.2 million or so, estimates the Ministry of Heath, Labor and Welfare.

     In a move to increase the number of caregivers, the ministry plans to raise their salaries by an average of 12,000 yen ($101) a month starting in fiscal 2015.

(Nikkei)

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