The issue of an ageing workforce is true for a growing number of EU Member States and high on their political agendas. The European reality is that many employers and workers will soon realize that they will benefit more from working into their late sixties or early seventies than they would from retiring before then. Apart from financial rewards, employment often gives one the chance to master new skills and achieve a sense of meaning. Fifty years of age is more or less the time, by which an average worker gains a handful of competences and practice.
It is natural, however, that with age each of us is confronted with certain conditions, which are the outcomes of multiple risk factors, often accumulated in different occupational settings. Cardiovascular and musculoskeletal diseases, deteriorating eyesight or poor mental wellbeing are just a few examples of conditions, which older workers are more prone to, however these are not inevitable outcomes.
A great number of such and similar problems can be still prevented, reduced or adjusted for, either via investments in workplace infrastructure or the assistance of occupational health professionals (OHPs). Today's responses tend to focus on work environment or the implementation of social security measures, whereas relatively little is being done in terms of extracurricular training offered to OHPs. In fact, the availability of educational materials, which specifically address the problem of an ageing workforce is generally poor and sometimes very scattered.
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