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Baby Boomers Focused on Lifestyle Not Finances

4 September 2006
Media Release

Baby Boomers Focused on Lifestyle Not Finances

New Zealand’s baby boomers are more worried about looking good and living full social lives as they grow old than about their finances, according to a survey of Southern Cross members aged over 55.

When asked about their attitudes towards ageing, 52% were worried about the physical signs of ageing such as wrinkles and grey hair, while only 44% were concerned about maintaining their financial situation.

Not surprisingly, health is their single biggest concern about growing old, with 84% of those surveyed being concerned how they will fare.

Southern Cross Healthcare’s Group Chief Executive, Dr Ian McPherson says the results show the importance of preventative health measures. “Almost a third of Southern Cross members over 65 have an operation each year, so baby boomers need to take action now if they want to remain healthy in later life,” says Dr McPherson.

Overall, the survey shows that people aged over 55 expect and want to continue to lead an active and social lifestyle. 33% were worried that as they grow older, ageism, discrimination or being lonely would become an issue.

More people (29%) are concerned about how they will manage their own garden, than about their children or grandchildren’s financial security (26%).

New Zealand’s over 55s seem to be succeeding at living full and active lives. However, sadly 11% regret not having done anything meaningful with their lives.


Editors Notes:
The national study was carried out by TNS New Zealand Limited (on behalf of Southern Cross Healthcare) and the fieldwork was completed in May 2006.

The subjects involved in the study included 553 Southern Cross members aged over 55 with health insurance nationwide.

About Southern Cross Healthcare:
Southern Cross Healthcare is comprised of two organisations that focus on the health sector in New Zealand:
- One organisation, the first created, is the Southern Cross Medical Care Society with over 800,000 members. It is a not for profit Friendly Society that focuses on delivering health insurance services for both individual members and group schemes.
- The other organisation is the Southern Cross Health Trust. It consists of the Southern Cross Hospitals, New Zealand’s only private hospital network and Southern Cross Travel Insurance.


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