Abstract for: Simulating the Impact of Long-term Care Policy on Family Eldercare Hours

The objective was to understand the effect of current and future policies on family caregiving hours for older adults by simulating the demand and supply of long-term care for older adults in Singapore. The study used standard system dynamics (SD) methodology. A dynamic hypothesis was developed and potential policy levers to reduce family caregiving hours for older adults (herein eldercare hours) were identified. A conceptual computer simulation model was developed that simulated the reference modes (i.e., the current behavior pattern of key variables). This model was presented to stakeholders for critique. After discussion of the model structure and its assumptions, a more complete model was formulated and parameterized to simulate the system behavior. Finally, the model was simulated across multiple iterations and the insights were shared with the stakeholders for further discussion. The principal finding was that family eldercare hours are projected to increase from 32 hours per week at present to 39 hours per week by 2030 if no significant policy actions are taken. SD modeling was useful in providing policymakers with an overview of the levers available to them and in demonstrating the interdependence of policies and system components.