Extreme world: Dying
3 February 2011 Last updated at 12:39 GMT
People in Britain can now expect to live far longer than their grandparents or great grandparents.
But whereas death was much more of a part of everyday life for previous generations, in Britain today death is becoming a social taboo.
A chronic respiratory illness has left Mandy Paine terminally ill for almost a decade. She says she has now come to terms with her death, but finds society stigmatizes her for her condition.
The BBC's Gabriel Gatehouse reports.