Abstract 摘要

One of the current challenges in healthcare services is elder care, as China has been an aging society since 2000. Should the government implement policies to promote home-care services when many Chinese are unable to afford long-term institutional care, even if such institutional care is available? This essay conducts a survey of the situation in Beijing and examines the local government’s elderly service policies. The paper also offers a Confucian ethical approach to the issue and makes policy recommendations for home-care services. The author contends that although modern families tend to be smaller and urban lifestyles are different from those of the past, we still need Confucian ethics, which place great emphasis on the virtue of filial piety (xiao) for children, who are expected to respect and take care of their elders. According to the Confucian tradition, it is better for elderly people to live at home with assistance from their adult children, and to lead their elderly lives among their children and grandchildren. Therefore, an institution of elderly people is not considered a normal—much less an ideal—living environment. The essay’s author acknowledges the changes in modern society and family lifestyle in contemporary China, but recommends that policymakers consider Confucian ethics in their formulation of government policies concerning long-term elder care in a big city like Beijing. The essay shows that current government policy is heading in the right direction but needs to be improved.

居家養老服務政策的推行與實施是近年中國政府對抗社會老齡化過程中的重要對策。北京市政府自2000 年後出台了大量居家養老相關政策,設法落實“以居家(養老)為基礎”的目標,然而目前的政策發展仍有不足。本文就北京市目前老齡化社會帶來的挑戰,提供了儒家倫理視角的分析。同時針對目前居家養老政策提出兩點建議,進而從政府政策制定角度為實現孝道價值觀提供幫助。