Preventive Care for Elderly

Senior Care Tips By A1 Senior Care

8 tips for preventive activities for the elderly

Many municipalities or districts offer activities for elderly living at home to grow old and promote independent functioning. But not all groups of elderly people take part in such activities. How do you reach them?

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Reach older people with preventive activities

In the factsheet you will find promising elements to better reach a number of elderly groups with preventive activities. Such as older people with low socio-economic status (SES), with a small social network and older migrants with a non-western background are more difficult to achieve for this type of activity.

Recommendations to optimize preventive activities

The researchers come up with 8 recommendations for professionals and municipalities to optimize preventive activities.

1. Work together in signaling and referral

Apply an integrated approach and work together with primary care providers, social neighborhood teams, welfare organizations, municipalities, volunteers and informal carers in identifying and referring the elderly.

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2. Approach the elderly personally and in different ways

An appropriate approach can be required for every older difference and sometimes several strategies. For one person, a formal approach (for example via a local authority or a general practitioner) and for the other an approach through an informal approach (key person, church). An experiential approach can be helpful to get in conversation with an older person.

3. Use key persons

Key persons are crucial to reach the target group because of the many contacts they have with residents in a neighborhood. They often also speak the language of the target group and come from the same culture. Make sure you know the key people in a neighborhood and work with them to get in touch with the elderly.

4. Ensure good accessibility

A central location in the district or transport from door-to-door lowers the threshold to take part in preventive activities. The municipality can play a facilitating role by making funds available for this.

5. Take the time to gain confidence

Creating a relationship of trust with these elderly people is a prerequisite for being able to discuss their needs. Take a lot of time for that, because the needs are often complex and these older people can put this into words. Discuss the expectations together and match the pace of the older person.

6. Create a moment in which it is all about being together

Right and social gathering is a motivation for older people to take part in preventive activities. Elderly people are most looking forward to this, so make sure there is ample opportunity for this by, for example, planning a joint coffee moment. Moreover, this contributes to solidarity between older people.

7. Develop (culture) sensitive communication skills

Use the tools and training available for developing (culture) sensitive communication skills. These skills help to make sensitive topics negotiable and build a relationship of trust.

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8. Share your knowledge and experience

As an experienced professional, share the necessary knowledge and skills for working with these groups of elderly people with new professionals and volunteers. This can be done through education, guiding students during a practical internship, intervision meetings with volunteers and working in new employees.

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