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Thursday, December 31, 2009

Technology Bridging Caregiving Gaps

Throughout the ages, technology has played an integral role in addressing some of the world’s most pressing problems and it’s no exception when it comes to the issues of aging. With the tremendous growth of the elder population around the world and the shortage of appropriate caretakers, there is a growing need to address the “elder care crisis” with the help of hi tech.

As more and more people are living longer and straining the social system and economy of their country, companies are striving to seize this opportunity to use technology to alleviate the economic burden of long term healthcare and bridge the gap in the market.

Japan, one of the world’s nations who are currently experiencing a shortage of caregivers for its rapidly aging population, announced in March that the country is working on robot technology to help care for seniors. This joint-venture carried by the private sector and the government, promises to deliver robotic nurses and caregivers in a matter of five years. While Japanese companies are making great strides towards using technology to alleviate some of the problems related with caregiving, a Reuters article suggested that the receiving end may not be as enthusiastic. This is understandable since machines can not replace human warmth and interaction, and they can be intimidating and hard to use for the older population.

Similarly, staffs employed in the nursing and caregiving industries in Norway are open to the idea of introducing robots to help them perform routine tasks, according to a study carried out by SINTEF for the Norwegian Association of Local and Regional Authorities. The challenges of providing care for a rapidly growing population of elderly in Europe have focused more attention on the potential of technology to meet people's needs. With the 65+ population expected to increase to be 25 percent of the EU's population by 2025, investment in ambient assisted living, eHealth, remote monitoring and wearable technologies is increasing.

Artificial companions such as robotic pets could help monitor the health and wellbeing of elderly Britons, a new report from the Royal Academy of Engineering suggests. The academy said the technology is available to produce man-made companions for older people within three years, but it also questioned whether society has fully considered the legal and ethical ramifications of such developments, according to Reuters.

Many more technological companies in the US and other parts of the world are putting their expertise to work and coming up with innovations that will allow the elderly to age comfortably without depleting human resources. Among many other, Quality of Life Technology Center in the US is striving to bring new ideas to use technology to help senior citizens live as long as possible in their own homes. The technology will provide all types of assistance to the elderly to enable them to perform daily tasks without extra caregiver resources, keeping them out of nursing homes and elder care centers that are funded by the government.

Some important links:



Europe's market for eHealth technology is booming






Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Silver Economy:The economic benefits of demographic change

"In any political debate, demographic change and ageing are commonly regarded as a threat. What is required, however, is a shift in both, focus and approach: We need to consider demographic change and the ageing of our society as a challenge and as an opportunity for both, economic growth and improving Europe's competitiveness. In the "Silver Economy Network of European Regions", we emphasise the economic opportunities inherent in this demographic change. Today, senior citizens across Europe enjoy a far greater choice when spending their money on products and services."

At the European level we should consider the achievements of the different societies - in terms of culture and in economic fields of action when considering ways to improve the qualities ranging from services, tourism, culture, wellness, and health to products and services which help support independent living.

As European politicians, decision makers in organisations as well as senior citizens themselves more strongly embrace this perspective, new powerful markets for products, services, economic co-operatives and networks will emerge from which all European regions can economically benefit. Within the Silver Economy Network of European Regions (SEN@ER), we expect the development and implementation of the "Silver Economy" to have a positive impact on economic growth and job creation in Europe.

We are convinced that senior citizens will add a major impetus to significant parts of the economy. For North Rhine-Westphalia - Germany's largest state with a population of roughly 18 million - where the state government initiated a "Silver economy" initiative, recent calculations have shown that a proactive response to the needs and interests of the elderly could lead to some 100.000 new jobs. Similar calculations for Germany as a whole predict more than 900.000 new jobs in the "Silver Economy" within the next two decades. There are no other sectors or businesses with a higher growth potential. These calculations should be comparable to other regions and countries in Europe.

The European Union needs a European "Silver Economy" initiative to further improve the quality of life for older citizens and to reap the benefits of the demographic change in terms of economic growth, jobs, employment and competitiveness. This initiative should be developed by the Commission and eventually implemented at all regional levels.

The "Silver Economy Network of European Regions" has been developed by North Rhine-Westphalia along with Andalucia (ES), Burgenland (AT), Extremadura (ES), Gelderland (NL), Limburg (NL), Lower Silesia (PL), Mid-East Region Ireland (IE), Midland Region Ireland (IE), Scotland (UK) and West-Midlands (UK). The network is alive! We are actively developing concepts to further implement relevant projects and activities. We are confident that the European Parliament, the European Commission and the European Council will support us and look forward to a multitude of European activity also at the political level.

Speech by Armin Laschet,North Rhine-Westphalia Minister for the Generations, Family, Women and Integration

Source: http://www.silvereconomy-europe.org/index.html

4th European Silver Economy Conference :Limoges (France) January 2010

After the successful European Silver Economy conferences in Bonn (Germany) in 2005, Maastricht (Netherlands) 2006 and Sevilla (Spain) 2007, the 2010 conference will be hosted by the SEN@ER partner Conseil Régional Limousin from 29 – 29 January 2010 in Limoges.

The conference will include amongst others a roundtable on "Regional silver economy and ageing strategies - examples and lessons learned" with experts from different European regions and a series of parallel workshops on

  • WS1: "Strategies for ageing in the area of employment and voluntary work",
  • WS2: "Ageing well and well-being" and
  • WS3: "Local strategies for independent living"

The Good Practice Competition is also now open and interested parties are asked to submit their applications online.

Conference website:

Good practice competition application form for the submission of good practices:

Online registration:

For more information please contact:

Antoine Mathieu: a-mathieu at cr-limousin dot fr

Monday, December 28, 2009

What New Grandparents Need to Know Ten Suggestions for Grandparents-to-be

Your career as a grandparent begins even before your grandchild is born. From the moment when you get the good news, your actions and reactions matter. These ten suggestions for new grandparents will earn you the gratitude of the expectant parents and pave the way for a great relationship with your grandchild.

Smile when you get the news. When the expectant parents share the good news with you, act pleased, even if you are concerned about issues such as finances. Be sure to inquire before telling anyone else, and let the parents be the ones to tell close friends and relatives. If the couple would like to wait a bit before announcing the news to others, respect their wishes and don’t tell their secret.

Let them do it their way. The expectant parents may choose a home birth when you would have opted for a hospital, or decide not to invite anyone into the delivery room when you were hoping to be present. No matter how you feel about their choices, don’t question them. Your future relationship with your child and your grandchild may depend upon your being supportive of their decisions.

Emphasize the positive. Tell funny and sweet stories about your experiences with your own babies. Stories about his or her own babyhood will probably especially interest the expectant parent. Never tell horror stories about your birthing experiences.

Be understanding of the mother-to-be. Expectant mothers are often very centered on what is happening with their bodies and their lives. If your daughter or daughter-in-law seems uninterested in your activities and thoughts, accept that this is a natural stage. She will regain her interest in the wider world some time after she gives birth. After the birth, be alert for signs of post-partum depression or any persistent sadness.

Go easy on the shopping. Pick up a few minor things and gauge the reaction. Some expectant parents welcome all contributions; others would prefer to make most of the choices about clothing and equipment themselves. For the latter type, a baby registry at the local baby store or a wish list posted online is a good option. If there is going to be a baby shower, work with the parents to make it fun and successful.

Hold off on major decisions. Don’t make dramatic changes in your own life in anticipation of being a grandparent. Don’t quit your job or plan to move until you see how much you are going to be needed and wanted in your grandchild’s life. Don't agree to provide full-time child care without considering the decision carefully.

Do help out, but don’t overdo it. Especially at the end of the pregnancy and right after the birth, the new parents will need some assistance, but don’t do too much. The mother or father who comes for a visit and insists on working the whole time is sending a message to the expectant parents that they can’t adequately take care of their own needs.

Put doubts about the spouse on hold. If you have misgivings about your son or daughter’s mate, try to overcome them. That person is going to be your grandchild’s parent. Give the spouse a chance to prove his or her worthiness in this new role.

Be prepared to share. Remember that in most families there is another set of grandparents (and sometimes two or three sets!). If you’ve not been sociable with the other family, you might want to plan a social occasion to get to know them better before the new baby arrives. Use diplomacy in handling possible conflicts over grandparent names. Communicate with the other grandparents to coordinate visits. A little planning and discussion before the birth will keep the new parents from being overrun with grandparents immediately after the birth.

Make peace with your ex. If you are divorced from your child’s father or mother, you may need to prepare to share grandparenting honors with your ex. This potentially ticklish situation can go smoothly if you plan ahead and prepare yourself mentally. You will probably have to be in each other’s presence upon occasions such as the grandchild’s birthday, so why not start by being cordial before the birth?

By , About.com Guide


Monday, December 21, 2009



The College of Social Work, Nirmala Niketan has been involved in training graduates and post-graduates in the field of Social Work since 1955.

In the course of its work the College has realised that it is necessary to provide similar inputs to many more people in the community. There is a need to train local leaders and volunteers to assume responsibility for the development of their communities/milieu, to be aware of and protect their own human rights and those of other vulnerable groups.

In 1996, the College of Social Work started a six-month Weekend Training Course in Social Work for Grass root Workers. In response to a growing need for similar training expressed by Senior Citizens, The College of Social Work has initiated a seventeenth short-term three-month training course in Social Work commencing on 11th January 2010.

COURSE BEGINS : 11th January 2010.



TIMINGS : 2.00 – 5.00 p.m.
(Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays)



MUMBAI – 400 063.
Tel: 28742284
11.00 A.M. – 5.00 P.M.
(LUNCH BREAK: 1.00 – 2.00 P.M.)

Kindly Note: This course has been affiliated to the University of Mumbai.

Ms. Philomena Vaz
Program Co-ordinator.
College of Social Work-Extension centre,
St. Pius College Campus,
Virwani Road,
Goregaon (E),
Mumbai-400 063
Tel.No. (022) 28742284.
Email: nnextension.centre@gmail.com

We at Silver Inning Foundation recommend this course those who are interested to learn something new and do social work.

Fixed routine a must for those with Alzheimer's

Once an active social worker, 74-year-old Shrihari Pandit (name changed), a retired bank employee, watches without focusing on his son, Shankar, who is fastening the buttons on his shirt and helping him wear his sandals. Once outside their Mira Road residence, Pandit holds on tightly to Shankar's hand. There is no flicker of recognition on Pandit's face when his grandson, Sonu, comes running to him.

Pandit was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease five years ago. According to a study conducted in the metropolis, as many as 1.6% of citizens above the age of 65 suffer from the disease. In Western countries, where the life expectancy is higher, as much as eight to 10% of the population suffers from Alzheimer's which is the most common form of dementia in people over 65 years of age.

The brain has 100 billion nerve cells (neurons). Each nerve cell communicates with many others to form networks. In Alzheimer's disease, as in other types of dementia, increasing numbers of brain cells deteriorate and die.

"It is a disorder that seriously affects a person's ability to carry out daily activities," said Dr Roop Gursahani, neurologist, Hinduja Hospital. She sees two to three new patients suffering from the disease every month.

"Though there is no cure, certain drugs can slow the deterioration down. The family members must maintain the daily routine of the patient," said Dr Gursahani. That is where the support group for Alzheimer's patients, being run at the Holy Family Hospital, Bandra, comes in.

Started by the Greater Mumbai chapter of the Alzheimer's and Related Disorder Society of India (ARDSI) and Silver Innings Foundation, the group meets from 4 pm to 5 pm on the last Saturday of every month. A clinical psychologist, psychiatrist, social workers and family members of patients make up a gathering.

"The group caters to people from Andheri to Mahim," said Sailesh Mishra, founder-president of Silver Innings. "But, we get visitors from as far as Thane as there is no support group in that area. We also provide help to other people interested in starting support groups."

However, not many come forward to discuss Alzheimer's in the open. "That is why we decided to include home visits to counsel family members of a patient," he said.

Contact for Holy Family Dementia Support Group & Silver Innings Dementia Support group,Mumbai:

silverinnings@gmail.com Cell: 09987104233 / 09029000091

Courtesy: http://www.dnaindia.com/mumbai/report_fixed-routine-a-must-for-those-with-alzheimer-s_1325844

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Joint NGO Statement to the 48th UN Commission for Social Development

By AARP, Global Action on Aging, HelpAge International, International Association of Gerontology and Geriatrics (IAGG), International Association of Homes and Services for the Ageing (IAHSA), International Federation on Ageing (IFA) and International Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse, Inc. (INPEA)

December 10, 2009


1. Older people continue to experience discrimination and violation of their rights and are subsequently marginalized and excluded from society. Existing human rights mechanisms do not sufficiently protect older people's rights and the time has come to explore new mechanisms to better protect their rights.
Human rights, older people and social integration

2. The protection of human rights is central to social integration. Commitment 4 of the 1995 Copenhagen Declaration on Social Development committed governments to 'promote social integration by fostering societies that are stable, safe and just, and are based on the promotion and protection of all human rights'[1].

3. Everywhere the world is ageing rapidly: by 2050 one in five of the world's population will be over the age of 60, with over three-quarters in developing countries[2]. As the world experiences rapid population ageing, the pressures that result in age discrimination are likely to intensify; so does the imperative to address such discrimination.

4. Protecting older people's rights and treating them with respect on an equal basis along with younger people will help them to lead dignified, secure lives, as equal members of society. Increased protection of the rights of older men and women creates the conditions which enable them to live more independently and to participate in and contribute to their own development, as well as that of those around them. In so doing, respecting and protecting all people's rights results in more inclusive, equitable and sustainable societies.

Discrimination against older people

5. The Universal Declaration on Human Rights (1948) states in Article 1 that "all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights". This equality does not change with age. However, many older women and men continue to experience discrimination, abuse and neglect, with little attention paid to protecting their rights.

6. Older men and women age differently and the discrimination that they experience is often multi-dimensional, based not only on age but on other factors, such as gender, ethnic origin, where they live, disability, poverty, sexuality and/or literacy levels. The combination of a life time of gender-based discrimination and age discrimination means that older women often face disproportionate abuse and discrimination. Older people in rural areas, older refugees, older asylum seekers and stateless older people also experience disproportionate levels of discrimination.

7. Older men and women are often denied access to services and jobs or treated with disrespect because of their age and other factors such as gender or disability. Older men and women are often subjected to abuse including verbal, sexual, psychological and financial abuse. Many older people do not have financial protection such as pensions and other forms of social security. Older people may not receive appropriate health and social care because of their age. Treatment can be denied or older people can receive poor or insufficient service.

8. Sometimes older people are deemed 'unemployable' because of their age - this is a violation of a person's rights in the workplace, everyone has the right to income security. Furthermore older people may also be forced to stop working because of mandatory retirement ages. In many parts of the world inheritance laws, both statutory and customary, deny women of all ages the right to own or inherit property when their husband is deceased. Family members often force widows off their land or seize their property which is a violation of their right to equality in terms of ownership, management and disposition of property.

Existing protection of older people's rights is inadequate

9. Existing international and regional human rights law does not sufficiently protect older people's rights. International human rights conventions that are legally binding all emphasise that human rights are for everyone. However, with the exception of one convention (on migrant workers), age is not listed explicitly as a reason why someone should not be discriminated against

10. In practice, the existing system is not adequately protecting older men and women's rights. For example treaty bodies, whose role it is to monitor how international conventions are being implemented, rarely ask countries to include older people in their reporting. At a national level, the continued existence of age discrimination and ageism in national laws, policies and practice is also a sign that governments have failed to adequately incorporate older people's rights into their laws, budgets, programmes and training for service delivery staff.

11. "Soft laws" guiding the treatment of older women and men, most notably the UN Principles for Older Persons (1991) and the Madrid International Plan of Action on Ageing (MIPAA, 2002), are not legally binding and as a result are not systematically integrated into government policies and practice .4

The need for new mechanisms to protect older people's rights

12. In the face of continuing discrimination and insufficient legal protection, the time has come to explore new mechanisms to better protect older people's rights. These include a special rapporteur and a convention on the rights of older people.

13. A convention would help older people live lives of dignity. It would help change attitudes towards older people; increase the visibility of older people, ageism and age discrimination; clarify responsibilities towards older people; improve accountability; and provide a framework for policy and decision making. This is essential for achieving social integration and building societies for all that respect everyone's rights.

14. The human rights standards that protect older people's rights are scattered throughout various international and regional conventions. Bringing the relevant provisions together in one text, as was successfully done for the rights of women, children and people with disabilities, would bring clarity to both the nature of older people's rights and the responsibilities necessary to protect them.

15. A special rapporteur on the rights of older people could advise and support member states on the better implementation of MIPAA and eventually a new convention. He or she could promote and give visibility to the rights of older people by examining and reporting on the nature and extent of violations of older people's rights and making recommendations on how to better protect older people's rights. He or she would also be able to encourage existing rapporteurs to address older people's rights within their own specific areas of concern.


16. We urge the Commission for Social Development to recommend that Member States explore the possibility of new mechanisms to better protect the rights of all older women and men, including a special rapporteur and a convention on the rights of older people.

[1] Commitment 4, Copenhagen Declaration on Social Development, 1995 http://www.un.org/documents/ga/conf166/aconf166-9.htm

[2] UNDESA, World Population Prospects: the 2006 Revision, 2006



Silver Inning Foundation supports this Joint Statement for protection of Elder Right and Dignity and peace to our Elderly.

Know more about Diabetes


According, to recent statistic estimates, in the year 2025, 24,324,778 United States citizens will suffer from -blank-. Are you intrigued yet? Are you nervous? Well, what if I told you exercise and a proper nutrition can enhance your chances of never receiving this disease? Due to our sedentary lifestyle, and improper nutrition, the prevalence of Diabetes, has skyrocketed in recent years. If we as a nation, want to diminish the increasing rate, we must understand the disease.

1. Diabetes is a metabolism disorder. During consumption, our body breaks most of our food down into glucose. It just so happens, that the main source of energy and fuel is, glucose. When an individual has diabetes their body does not produce enough insulin to be able to move their glucose throughout their body. Therefore, that individual does not receive the necessary fuel and energy.

2. Type 1 Diabetes: This is an autoimmune disease which causes the immune system to fight against the body. When an individual has diabetes, their immune system attacks the insulin-producing beta cells in the pancreas. Due to this, the glucose becomes sedentary and can not survive. In order to survive, an individual with diabetes, must take an insulin shot daily.

3. Type 2 Diabetes: Insulin resistance, or Type 2 Diabetes is the most common form of diabetes. In the case of Type 2 Diabetes, an individual is producing sufficient insulin, but for unknown reasons can not effectively use it. Although, the origin is different from type 1 diabetes the result is the same; the glucose becomes sedentary, rendering it useless.

4. Gestational Diabetes: Gestational Diabetes can only occur during pregnancy. This disease is strictly based on plasma glucose values measured during the OGTT. A woman’s glucose levels must be closely monitored during pregnancy, because their levels normally drop. In the case, of gestational diabetes, however, they almost become non existent.

Posted by Sharon Vegoe

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Hamari Suraksha is "The security portal for Senior Citizens"

Hamari-Suraksha, a Portal aimed at improving security level for Senior Citizens.In association with the Mumbai Police, the Hamari-Suraksha will create a database of all senior citizens as well as those of their family members, drivers, domestic-help, watch –men, and their regular visitors.

Now, the senior citizens of Mumbai can ensure their safety at the click of mouse. They just need to register themselves at a portal, www.hamarisuraksha.com.

The website, developed in partnership with Hamari Suraksha Software Solutions Private Limited, was inaugurated by police commissioner D Sivanandhan at Malabar Hill Club on Friday morning.

Senior citizens who are not tech savvy can seek help of their relatives. Or they can simply dial a police helpline, 1090, and the on-duty cops will do the job for them. NGOs also will be setting up help centres in various parts of the city to help senior citizens register.

At the website, senior citizens can load photos and details of their domestic help, driver, milkman, newspaper delivery boy, health care providers, including doctors, relatives and nearest hospitals. "It will help the police in bolstering security for senior citizens," said Sivanandhan.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Safety Tips for Elderly Drivers

All of the following are methods that can help any driver drive safely, and they are especially important to help older drivers continue to drive safely:

  • Always wear your seat-belt.
  • Continuously move your eyes and observe all traffic.
  • Look for vehicles that enter the highway from curbs, driveways and businesses.
  • Be alert for parked cars, pedestrians and cyclists.
  • Frequently check both your inside and outside rearview mirrors.
  • Check for traffic behind you. Turn your head and neck and look over your shoulder before you turn or change traffic lanes.
  • Do not expect that you will be given the right of way, even if you know it ought to be given to you.
  • Make sure that it is safe to pass or change traffic lanes before you do so.
  • Keep a minimum three-second following distance. Start your count when the car ahead passes a fixed point.
  • When you drive in rain or winter weather, reduce your speed and increase your following distance.
  • Make sure there is a safe amount of space on all sides of your vehicle.
  • Plan all your trips so you can use routes you know well. Stay away from highways with heavy traffic and high traffic speeds.
  • Try not to drive at dusk or dawn when you cannot see as well
  • Do not drive for extended periods of time without rest.
  • Keep windshields and rear windows clean on the inside and the outside.
  • Avoid looking at the headlights of vehicles that approach you.
  • Concentrate on your driving and be prepared for events you do not expect.
  • Do not drive if you are emotionally upset.
  • Reduce background noise. Keep your air conditioning or heater and the volume of your radio, on lower settings.
  • Never drive after you consume alcohol or drugs (including prescription drugs).
  • Also read the labels on over-the-counter medications. These medications can also affect your ability to drive.
  • Take a driver improvement course.

It is important for older drivers to retain or improve their driving skills and judgment. Older drivers can help maintain safe driving skills and extend their years of driving if they:

  • Have their driving abilities assessed frequently
  • Attend driver safety courses to help renew driving knowledge and skills.
  • Recognize vision changes and see their eye care specialist
  • Keep active to maintain quick reflexes and remain flexible.
  • When required, get physical therapy and medical rehabilitation.

Vision, Hearing and Medication

The process of becoming older brings physical changes that decrease driving abilities. The exact age at which the changes can occur depends on each person. For all older drivers, it is important to recognize when the changes occur.

The changes to look for include:

  • Decreased vision, especially at night.
  • A decreased ability to judge the distance between your car and other vehicles.
  • Movements that are restricted or difficult and longer reaction times caused by disabilities that include arthritis and rheumatism.

When you recognize the changes in yourself, it is important to know how to compensate for the changes:

  • Keep a standard schedule for vision and hearing examinations.
  • If you normally wear glasses or contact lenses or a hearing aid, always wear them when you drive.
  • Give yourself time to adjust to new lenses, and have your lenses checked often.
  • Use medications correctly. Understand how medications can affect your driving. Avoid driving when you take medications that can change your coordination, vision or judgment.

Adjustments Older Drivers Can Make to Remain Safe and Mobile

The loss of the driving privilege is a very significant concern for any driver. The driver license is often both a symbol of independence and seen as a requirement for a normal life.

Rather than stop driving completely and lose independence, older drivers can restrict driving to adjust to changes in their driving skills. Older drivers can:

  • Drive in daylight hours and not at dawn, dusk or at night when it is more difficult for a driver to see at these hours.
  • Avoid "rush hours" and other peak traffic hours.
  • Use roads that you know well and avoid roads you do not know well.
  • Take shorter trips.
  • Use highways that have lower speed limits.
  • Do not try to eat or drink while you drive. Eating while driving is the fourth leading cause of crashes and near-crashes, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
  • Do not use a cell phone or any other hand-held device while driving.

Actions Older Drivers Can Take to Remain Safe and Mobile

As the country ages, there will be more families who need to deal with the issue of older driver safety. Approximately one in every seven drivers now is age 65 or older, and the percentage of older drivers continues to grow. By 2029, approximately one in four drivers will be age 65 or older.

Any of the following can be signs of possible problems. It can be a warning sign if the older driver or the family notice that the driver:

  • Has frequent accidents or near-accidents, or frequent traffic tickets or warnings from the police.
  • Has dents or scrapes on the car, or on fences, mailboxes, garage doors, curbs, and other locations.
  • Finds that it is difficult to accurately judge the amount of space between vehicles in traffic, at intersections and on highway entrance and exit ramps.
  • Frequently becomes lost.
  • Cannot easily see both edges of the road when they look straight ahead.
  • Has slower response time; cannot quickly move their foot from the gas pedal to the break pedal; or confuses the two pedals.
  • Gets distracted easily or has problems with concentration.
  • Cannot turn their head to check over the shoulder while they back up or change traffic lanes.

An older driver who continues to experience a decrease in driving abilities, may then have to consider how to limit driving or stop driving.

New Technology and Engineering Can Help Make Driving Safer

Improvements that result from new technologies and engineering have made driving easier and safer for all drivers. These improvements are more significant for older drivers who need to adjust to decreased driving skills. The improvements include:

  • Cars that are built to be safer.
  • Pavement lines, arrows and traffic signs that are larger and easier to see.
  • Special traffic lanes for left turns.
  • Improved traffic signals; for example left turn arrows.
  • Better timing of traffic lights.

Help from the NYS Office for the Aging

It is difficult for both the older drivers and the family when the older driver has become a risk on the highways. The circumstances can result in strong emotions, conflicts and confusion.

To help, the New York State Office for the Aging has the Older Driver Family Assistance Program. The Program offers a handbook for families with the title "When You Are Concerned." The 56-page book has won awards and is for families who need to deal with the issue of an older driver at risk or you download the pdf:

Saturday, December 12, 2009

The growing cyber universe in India and the Elderly: Study

“Internet is so vast & influential that it surpasses the differences of age, SEC, gender and town class” .

People have started to realize the importance of Internet in their lives where it is not just a communication mode to email, chat and get information but has become an enabling tool to perform various tasks over Internet like learning, networking, shopping, gaming and expressing themselves in the form of blogs to the extent of establishing a virtual world for themselves.

Thus, it is important to map the Indian market for its cyber movements. IMRB International along with IAMAI had taken a pioneering role and presents a reports bouquet ‘Internet in India 2007’, which captures the minutest details of how and where Internet is heading.

Internet in India (I-cube) reports are based on a primary survey conducted across 30 cities, amongst 65,000 individuals, making it one of the largest researches in the domain.

Looking at the Indian population from the perspective of Internet usage, urban population forms the relevant mass.

As most of the content available over the Internet is in English, familiarity with English acts as a major factor driving Internet usage.

India being a home for 22 odd regional languages, Internet is largely limited to those familiar with English. This opens an opportunity for vernacular content to increase and thus tap the non English speaking literate people.

Exposure to PC usage acts as another factor limiting the growth of Internet users in India. A significant increase is expected in Internet penetration due to increasing focus on literacy, PC education and vernacular content in the coming years.

More and more people are now experiencing Internet. 70% of the people who know computer have used Internet in their life which is a very healthy sign for Internet in India. It shows that people are becoming aware of the Internet and are moving ahead to experience it.

People have started realizing that Internet can serve as a one stop point for all their needs. Be it communication, entertainment, shopping, information search, Internet serves as a panacea for all their requirements. This has led 70% of the ever users to glue themselves to the Internet and access it on a regular basis.

Youth forms the major chunk to the growing Internet user base in India. This may be due to the fact that all the sticky applications which are present today are focusing on youth and youth forms the segment which can adapt easily with the changing times and changing applications.

There has been an unexpected decrease in the share of older men and non working women in the Internet user pie This might be due to the lack of sticky applications for this segment and greater growth rates of other segments clouding out growth in this market.

The cyber café continues to rule as the most prominent point of Internet access.

Internet usage Statistics:
Young Men : 33%
Older Men: 15%
Non working women: 6%

Preference for the primary access point is a function of the following 3 C’s: Convenience, Cost & Content sought.

School going kids and college students find it more convenient to use cyber
café as it is the cheapest source of access & also gives them more privacy
regarding content.

On the other hand, home and office has gained popularity amongst young men, older men and working women as they find these access points to be more convenient & cost effective over others.

The content they seek also involves e-commerce applications which need a secure network. This acts as a limiting factor for them to the use of cyber café as point of access.

Non working women like to access from home as it is more convenient for them.

Share by point of access for Older people:
45% : Office
34% : Home
16%: Cyber Cafe
5% :others

‘Internet presents a gamut of activities which makes it a second life’

Communication remains the key application over the Internet.

In this role the Internet is squeezing the share of traditional media. With the sprouting of applications like gaming, news, blogs etc users find Internet a substitute to library, TV, newspaper and radio.

Online banking, online ticketing, e-tailing are some of the emerging applications which act as hooks to make the users stick to the Internet.

Main application for using Internet for Older people:
58% Email
6% Chat
15% Information
15% Entertainment
6% E commerce

This suggest further actions are required to keep the older men and non-working women hooked on to the Internet.

‘Wisdom lies in not just converting Internet non users to Internet users but also to convert them into active Internet users’

Even though Internet traffic has increased significantly, there exists a larger untapped area which need to be targeted. This requires an understanding of various essentials required to increase the Internet penetration.

The four key essentials are: Technology, Access, Content and Awareness. These four need to be targeted collectively in a balanced way to expand Internet usage in India.

Read detail report here: http://www.iamai.in/Upload/Research/I-Cube-2007-Summary-Report-final.pdf

Friday, December 11, 2009


Nana Occasionally Spoils, Crosses Swords with Parents, Americans Say

SUMMER SHADE, Kentucky (Dec. 9, 2009) – As extended families gather for the holidays, what do Americans really think of grandma?

Overwhelmingly, they perceive her as caring – and just as overwhelmingly, they reject any characterization of the grandmother/grandchild relationship as “distant.” At the same time, they acknowledge that nana is prone to spoiling her grandchildren and admit that parents and grandparents don’t always see eye to eye.

Those are the principal findings of a new nationwide survey conducted in late November by TheNanaBlogs (www.thenanablogs.com), the definitive resource for the “Nana Generation.” In association with Chicago market researcher Synovate, TheNanaBlogs asked 1,000 Americans, a cross-section of the population: ““Which of the following describes a typical grandmother/grandchild relationship?”

Here’s the high-level breakdown among total respondents:
o Cares deeply about the grandchild - 81 percent
o Spoils the grandchild – 56 percent
o Disagrees with the parent from time to time about child issues – 40 percent
o Favors one grandchild over another – 8.5 percent
o Distant from the child – 3 percent
o None of these – 7 percent

TheNanaBlogs is a creation of Teresa Bell Kindred, a retired high school history teacher, author, magazine columnist, 53- year-old mom of five and proud nana of one granddaughter (featured in her nanablog, www.NanaHood.com).

While “caring deeply” was the top choice across all age brackets, younger respondents weren’t quite as gung-ho as their elders – in a sense, reflecting a perception gap between grandchildren and grandparents. Some 87 percent of those 65 and over selected “caring” as their top choice, but just 77 percent of those 18-24 did so – the lowest among all age groups.

Men and women cited “caring” in equal numbers (81 percent) but marital status proved a point of departure: 84 percent of married respondents opted for the “caring” option, against 78 percent of unmarrieds. Interestingly, among households with children, more households without children referenced “caring” (82 percent) than those with (80.5 percent).

On a regional basis, perceptions of caring were highest in the Midwest (83.5 percent) and lowest in the West (76 percent). All income groups held at around 83 percent, save those earning less than $25K, at 75 percent – perhaps indicative of a younger population (grandchildren themselves).

“These findings are heartening but they’re also instructive,” Kindred said. “While our survey affirms that grandmothers and their grandchildren are close emotionally, many don’t see each other as often as they’d like – certainly not as often as nanas would like. Thankfully, it’s easier than ever for families to communicate via technology… and it’s incumbent upon grandparents to get comfortable with social networks. That’s where our grandchildren play, and we ought to connect with them every chance we get.”

Caring Taken to Extremes?

If spoiling isn’t exactly caring taken to extremes, it did prove the second most popular perception. Men were slightly more likely to cite “spoiling” than women (57 percent to 55 percent). Moving up the age scale, the grandparents’ bracket (65+) was least likely by far to name spoiling (just 49 percent) while the ostensible witnesses to nana’s indulgence (those aged 18-24 and 25-34) referenced it in big numbers -- 60.5 percent and 64 percent, respectively.

Does spoiling fill an income gap? TheNanaBlogs survey revealed wide variation based on employment status: 60 percent of those employed fulltime cited “spoiling,” against 45 percent of part-time workers and 49 percent of retirees. Those in the middle of the income spectrum referenced spoiling more than those at the top and bottom (60 percent vs. 54 percent).

Among the survey’s other findings:

o Who’s the Boss? In terms of generational conflict, the study exposed a small gender gap – 38 percent by men, 42 percent by women – and a much wider variation based on age. Perhaps suggesting that disputes are in the eye of the beholder, those aged 25-34 were least likely to see nanas and parents at odds (31 percent), the sandwich generation most likely (45 percent), and those 65 and over mostly in the middle, at 41.5 percent. Grandparental conflict appears to be more of an issue in the Midwest (45 percent) and relatively less so in the Northeast (35.5 percent). Similarly, it’s a bigger concern with whites than nonwhites (42 percent to 32 percent).

o Playing Favorites. On the matter of “nana likes you best,” the genders split a bit – 10 percent of men agreed, against 7 percent of women. Once again, age matters: 12 percent of the youngest respondents cited favoritism, versus 6 percent of those 45-54 and 7 percent of those 65 and up. In a possible allusion to the tribulations of divorce, twice as many of those who aren’t married saw nana doting on one grandkid more than others (12 percent, to 6 percent of marrieds). That difference applied to nonwhites (13 percent, to 7 percent of whites) and to the unemployed (15 percent -- nearly twice the rest of the population).

TheNanaBlogs.com/Synovate survey has a margin of error of +/- 3 percent. For a full copy of the survey results and a graphic presentation of top-line data, email info@edgecommunicationsinc.com.

About TheNanaBlogs
TheNanaBlogs.com is a new site dedicated to turning nanas, grandmas, memas (and moms) into bloggers. The site provides them with the space and the technology to begin blogging. Nanablogs offer grandparents a voice, a place to share thoughts, a place to brag about grandkids – and a new way to connect with family. Like its sister site, NanaHood.com, TheNanaBlogs.com is a creation of Teresa Bell Kindred. Teresa is a wife, mom, author, and proud nanablogger. Sign up now to get started.

Media contact:
Ken Greenberg
Edge Communications, Inc.


Thursday, December 10, 2009

Coping with Stress of Senior Home Care

Senior home care is making the decision to care for your aging parents or loved ones in their home or in your home allowing them their independence but taking on the responsibility of their being the caregiver. Caring for aging parents or loved ones carries a lot of responsibility and a range of emotions. No matter how much love in your heart, carrying the load of caring for your loved one will leave you drained physically, emotionally and possibly financially. Coping with the stress of senior home care has to be managed or you will not be able to be an effective caregiver.

Managing the stress of senior home care is all about taking charge. Take charge of your thoughts, your emotions, your schedule, your environment and the way you deal with problems and unexpected situations. The ultimate goal of coping with the stress of senior home care is to achieve a balanced life.

How to reduce, prevent, and cope with the stress of senior home care:

Senior home care requires organization - Organize your time and your schedule. Write everything down so that you or another family member has reference to phone numbers, doctors, medications, in home senior care providers, important insurance and financial numbers.

Start a personal journal- Share your feelings about the stress of senior home care. Writing down your thoughts will help you to take charge of your emotions.

Prioritize your health and well-being. Nurturing yourself is a necessary not a luxury. Healthy ways to relax and recharge:

· Go for a walk

· Call a good friend

· Sweat out the tension with a good workout

· Write in your journal

· Curl up with a good book

· Take a long bath

· Eat healthy and exercise regularly

· Play with your pet

· Work in your garden

· Listen to music

· Savor a cup of warm coffee or tea

Give yourself a break – Enlist the help of a professional senior home care provider. Senior home care providers such as Visiting Angels can provide daily or weekly help to everyday chores, errands, hygiene, meals or transportation needs just to name a few. Senior home care providers can also provide a respite to you responsibilities with as little as 15 minute notice to avoid unnecessary stress if your schedule needs help.

Coping with the stress of senior home care is the only possible way to be an effective caregiver to your loved ones. Your mental and physical health must take priority or you will not be able to manage what needs to be done. Take advantage of these tips. Organize yourself, express yourself, nurture yourself and help yourself by arranging for assistance with a senior home care provider.

By Linda Dunkelberger is a freelance writer and editor. “Coping with Stress of Senior Home Care” shares tips for coping with the stress of senior home care. Visiting Angels is a senior home care provider that helps seniors with everyday tasks, errands, meals, transportation, just to name a few services. For more information on Visiting Angels in your area, see www.Visitingangels.com .

Courtesy: Nancy Hardy


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