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Monday, November 29, 2010
THIS IS SHAME TO OUR CULTURE AND SO CALLED TRADITION.
Maariyamma is likely to be killed by her children because they cannot afford her. They will give her a loving oil bath. Several glasses of coconut water. A mouthful of mud. Perhaps a poison injection. She is just one of many old parents in Tamil Nadu dying in this way. But no one blinks at these ritual murders.
IN TAMIL, it is known as thalaikoothal. A leisurely oil bath. An exercise in love and health when given to newborn children, a ceremonial beginning to festivals, and the universal answer to pitiless summers. In Tamil Nadu’s small industry hub of Virudhunagar, however, it is the beginning of slow murder. The marker of the devastating poverty that makes a son kill his own aging mother.
Young family members of this district in southern Tamil Nadu have been pushing their infirm, elderly dependents to death because they cannot afford to take care of them. When 65-year-old Maariyamma suspected this might happen to her too, she moved out of her son’s house two years ago. “I’m not well enough to live on my own, but it is better than being killed by them,” she says. Amazingly, there is no bitterness in her voice. Or anger. “They’re struggling hard to take care of their own children,” says Maariyamma, of her sons. She places no blame. Her two sons and two daughters are farm labourers who travel to different villages every sowing and harvesting season. Seeing her children at pains to run their house, and feed and educate her grandchildren, Maariyamma knew she was a burden. She knew how it would end if she didn’t leave.
Maariyamma had seen it happen to other men and women of her age. Her neighbour, Parvathy, had been paralysed at the age of 76. “She had only one son,” says Maariyamma. “And he was working in Chennai, surviving on some menial job there. How could he afford to look after his bedridden mother?” One day, Maariyamma says, Parvathy’s son came, “did it” and went back to Chennai. “What else could he do?” she asks. Again, in place of anger or fear, there is helpless resignation. And a strange empathy for the person who might elaborately plan her murder
Thalaikoothal works thus: an extensive oil bath is given to an elderly person before the crack of dawn. The rest of the day, he or she is given several glasses of cold tender coconut water. Ironically, this is everything a mother would’ve told her child not do while taking an oil bath. “Tender coconut water taken in excess causes renal failure,” says Dr Ashok Kumar, a practicing physician in Madurai. By evening, the body temperature falls sharply. In a day or two, the old man or woman dies of high fever. This method is fail-proof “because the elderly often do not have the immunity to survive the sudden fever,” says Dr Kumar.
Read more : People for Social Cause Blog: Mother, shall I put you to sleep? MERCY KILLINGS
Friday, November 19, 2010
The Centre for Lifelong Learning, TISS and Silver Inning Foundation are happy to announce a two day workshop on Eden Alternative Training to be held at TISS on the 9th and 10th of December,2010.
Eden at Home (EAH) applies our Ten-Principle Philosophy to improving quality of life for Elders living at home and their care partners. A community-based approach to person-centered care, EAH focuses on building collaborative care partner teams that include the active participation of the Elder herself. Working together, empowered care partner teams help to ensure the independence, dignity, and continued growth and development of our Elder care partners and each other.
What does attending this workshop provide?
After training, you will inspire care partners, both within their organization and out in the community, to:
* Reframe perceptions of aging and disability
* Work together to reduce stress & burnout
* Build strategies on strengths, rather than limitations
* Develop meaningful connections with each other
* Create opportunities for all to give as well as receive
* Communicate effectively & thoughtfully
* Share joy, hope, wisdom, spontaneity, & respect
* Prevent loneliness, helplessness, & boredom for all on the care partner team
Dec. 9th to 10th , 2010
9:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Eden Alternative Training
The Centre for Lifelong Learning, TISS, Mumbai
Silver Inning Foundation
Ms. Reis Woollen with Silver Inning Foundation
Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai, India
Deonar, Mumbai - 400 088
Tel: 91-22-2552 5680
Registration Fees: Rs. 600/-. The fee includes working materials and hospitality & small donation to Silver Inning Foundation for cause of Elderly.
Payment to be made at: Cash counter at TISS between 10.30 am and 1pm on all working days. A copy of the receipt will have to be brought along on the 9th December at the time of registering.
Kindly send in your confirmation to Prof. Nasreen Rustomfram, email@example.com or Mr. Sailesh Mishra at firstname.lastname@example.org before 7th December,2010.Any queries may be addressed to both on the given email IDs.
Only few seats , register Now
The Eden Alternative: The Eden Alternative is a small not-for-profit organization making a big difference in the world. Based on the core belief that aging should be a continued stage of development and growth, rather than a period of decline.The Eden Alternative 10 Principles is seeking to remake the experience of aging around the world. The core concept of The Eden Alternative is strikingly simple. Dr. William Thomas, his wife Judy, the Eden home office staff, 50 Eden Educators, 60 mentors and more than 15,000 associates teach that where elders live must be habitats for human beings, not sterile medical institutions. They are dedicated to eliminating the plagues of loneliness, helplessness, and boredom that make life intolerable in most of today’s long-term care facilities.
The Centre for Lifelong Learning : The Centre for Lifelong Learning is an independent centre at Tata Institute of Social Sciences. The mission of this Centre is to work with adult learners who seek to work with the disadvantaged and vulnerable sections of society and also cater to people who would like to continue their education by taking up professional courses. To this end, it offers part-time Diploma Programmes in Gerontology and Counselling. Besides, it conducts a range of outreach and short-term programmes for professionals, Para-professionals and volunteers. The thematic contents of these programmes focus upon work-related needs as also self-growth and individual development.
Silver Inning Foundation: Silver Inning Foundation (SIF) is registered NGO dedicated for the cause of Senior Citizens. It is part of social enterprise Silver Innings which hosts one of the most comprehensive and dedicated website for elderly &their family www.silverinnings.com . The vision, mission and goals of SIF are centered on creating and implementing services and programmes that are holistic in nature and address the need to acknowledge the much needed supportive environment that the elderly deserve. It looks at reintegrating the elderly into mainstream society and lives with dignity. Silver Innings is working towards creating Elder Friendly World where Ageing becomes a Positive and Rewarding Experience.
Reis Woollen: Ms.Reis Woollen (RN-BC, BSN/BSc, CRRN) who is trained Geriatric Nurse from California has successfully completed The Eden Alternative Associates and Eden Educator training. Reis is currently working with Silver Inning Foundation as Director-Eldercare Education.
Thursday, November 18, 2010
‘1st Session on Trikaal Sandhya’ : way of spiritualism to enhance emotional well-being of the person
'Silver Tarang' an evening programme of Silver Innings Active Ageing Center has pleasure to invite Senior Citizens who are 50yrs + for ‘1st Session on Trikaal Sandhya’ .
"Trikal Sandhya" is expression of Gratitude to the Lord Almighty for: The Gift of Memory at Dawn , The Gift of Energy (from meals) at noon and The Gift of Peace at night.
Sri Pandurang Shastri Athawale (popularly known as 'Dada') exhorts everyone to remember God at least three times a day: Trikal Sandhya as it is called. This 'ritual' may appear too simplistic, but it has a great power to stimulate the confidence of presence of God all around and at all time. The time for remembrance is i) after getting up in the morning, ii) before the midday meal, and iii) at the time of retiring to bed at night. Practice of ' Trikal Sandhya is way of spiritualism to enhance emotional well-being of the person.
Facilitator: Mrs.Jayaben Rajgor
Date: Friday,19th Nov 2010
Time: 5.15 pm to 6.30 pm
Entry : Free
Venue: Cosmopolitan School, Ground Floor, Near Ganesh Mandir, Sheetal Nagar, Mira Road.Near Mumbai
Contact: Tel: 9987104233; Email: email@example.com
This programme is organized by Silver Inning Foundation with support from Cosmopolitan School .
Friday, November 12, 2010
A recently-held special seminar for senior citizens at the Moneylife Foundation discussed the various problems faced by the elderly in matters relating to finance, healthcare and insurance, and the solutions for the same.
Senior citizens slowly find themselves left in the wilderness with regard to various matters, and especially those relating to finance, health and insurance. The bad news is that there are no easy solutions and the scenario isn't encouraging. Take the case of insurance. According to statistics available, insurance companies have made lower payouts on claims by senior citizens than they have towards group policies of large corporate.
This was discussed at a special seminar on healthcare insurance for senior citizens at the Moneylife Foundation on 25 September 2010. Rohan Dukle, director, Magus Corporate Advisors Pvt Ltd, an insurance claims consultancy firm, said during his presentation on the subject that there were no great options for senior citizens, but there could be some solutions through aggregation. He suggested that a holistic solution could help improve the situation for seniors who have almost no cover at all.
The programme was attended by senior citizens, some knowledgeable persons representing senior citizen groups, insurance and hospital professionals and members of the Moneylife Foundation.
Mr Dukle explained that in working towards an aggregated solution, it was necessary to focus on ways to enhance protection for each person as individuals have different needs, levels of protection and finance. "There can never be a single solution that fits everybody who has crossed 60," Mr Dukle said. The Magus director proposed the constitution of an 'aggregated' group, and offered the services of his team to analyse individual needs and structure a solution.
The argument for setting up an aggregated group is that it would have increased negotiation power with insurance companies. The services offered did not imply dealing with a particular insurance company or loading a premium for senior citizens based on the claims ratio of the group. The 'aggregation' would consider each policyholder independently, while using the power of the group to negotiate with multiple insurance companies. Mr Dukle's team that would provide services to the aggregated group includes insurance professionals, chartered accountants, doctors, lawyers and claims experts.
Sanjay Datta, head of customer services for health and motor insurance at ICICI Lombard, echoed the remarks by Mr Dukle on the limited mediclaim options for senior citizens. He also said that the healthcare industry was going through a lot of changes. "The escalating costs of medical costs, coupled with de-tariffing and new competition, has put pressure on the industry. The cashless spat between PSU insurers and hospitals reflected the high claims ratio," he said. "ICICI Lombard has been able to continue the cashless facility across 4000-plus quality hospitals to date, but we do have the concept of Preferred Provider Network (PPN) where we drive the business on properly negotiated rates. We have moved to in-house claims processing that is working out well. We have had no increase in premium, except due to change in service tax and cess."
One of the problems senior citizens face is the difficulty in increasing the sum assured. For example, if one were to increase the sum assured from Rs1 lakh to Rs3 lakh, the pre-existing conditions would not apply on the increased amount of Rs2 lakh for the rest of the stipulated period. More importantly, after a certain age limit (like in the case of senior citizens) insurance companies could refuse to increase the sum assured, Mr Dukle pointed out. Therefore, he underlined the need to plan insurance coverage-especially for the silver years-in the 30s, or at least in the 40s. (The American Association of Retired Persons begins enrolment of members from the age of 50. The association provides a slew of services and educates its members on various matters of interest.)
Another aspect that was discussed was on how insurers linked pre-existing ailments and current illnesses to reject claims. Also, unlike vehicle and property insurance, healthcare insurance payments/ denials are hotly contested by both sides. Therefore, it is necessary to ensure that the documents submitted to the insurer have no errors on the doctor's certification for the date when the ailment was diagnosed. It has huge ramifications on the benefit payment.
Legal redressal for the policyholder is another important area. Mr Dukle explained that in the insurance sector recourse was slow and justice often delayed or denied. Among the options available to the policyholder if claims are denied or slashed is approaching the grievance cell of the insurance company, or the grievance cell of the Insurance Regulatory Development Authority (IRDA), the Insurance Ombudsman, or consumer court and finally the civil court. All are expensive and time-consuming, with no certainty of a positive result.
Mr Dukle said customer ignorance was also a big problem as there is very low awareness about the basic issues that are key to picking proper insurance cover.
"With total de-tariffing of the non-life industry post-2006, resulting in major price wars in hitherto profitable segments such as fire, engineering and so on, there is increased pressure on the bottom lines of insurers," Mr Dukle said. "This coupled with lower ceding commissions has resulted in tremendous pressure on the insurers, forcing them to reconsider pricing." With the constant entry of new players in the non-life segment, this pressure is not expected to reduce immediately. As such, therefore, insurers are becoming more stringent in passing of claims. This is even more evident in the case of Mediclaim which is repeatedly seeing high incurred claim ratios.
The Margus director said, traditionally, in a tariffed regime, insurers followed the policy of "pay if you can, reject if you must". In the current scenario insurers are rejecting claims at the slightest opportunity, taking advantage of weak redressal mechanisms. This is why he often recommended insurers who charge a higher premium with an assurance of hassle-free claim settlement, for clients who are not price sensitive and want quick settlement for genuine claims.
Medical care is one of the three main causes of impoverishment in the country. Treatment costs of major ailments like cancer, heart attack, stroke, renal failure are galloping. It is estimated that senior citizens will make up 10% of the population by 2015, with old age dependency increasing from 8.1 in 2000 to 22.6 in 2050.In this scenario, Moneylife Foundation intends to work with service providers such as Mr Dukle to find ways to obtain holistic solutions for senior citizens through the power of aggregation. Those interested to know about our initiatives can write to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will be in touch with you when a product or service is worked out. We also welcome ideas and suggestions to take this initiative forward.
Securing our Elders - Moneylife: Personal Finance Magazine
Thursday, November 11, 2010
The International Longevity Centre-India is a not-for-profit organization working for senior citizens since 2003. It is registered under Section 25 of the Indian Companies Act, 1956.
Its core areas of functioning are Research, Training, Policy, Advocacy and Documentation and undertaking field projects in the areas of Population Ageing.
ILC-I is happy to announce an eight days’ training programme on the social and economic issues of ageing organized by it in collaboration with the United Nations International Institute on Ageing,(UN INIA), Malta and the Bharati Vidyapeeth University.
This is a prestigious UN certified course specifically customized and tailored as appropriate to, and rooted in, the socio-economic conditions and needs of the country. Two renowned international and two acclaimed national gerontologists would be the faculty for this full time course.
This in situ training programme of UN INIA is undertaken to fulfill the training and manpower needs in the fields of geriatrics and gerontology of population ageing of the developing countries like India.
The training programme will be held in the premises of the Bharati Vidyapeeth University, Pune from the 16th of December to 21st of December 2010. This is a full time course from 9 am to 5 pm.
The registration fee for this course is Rs. 2000/- for the full period inclusive of training materials, the tuition fees, refreshments and lunch. (Outstation participants are requested to make their own accommodation arrangements. ILC-I would be happy to provide any further details in this regard).
We invite applications from Social workers , faculty members and/or post-graduate students of the subject .
You may send the names of the interested participants and their registration fee by cheque drawn in favour of the International Longevity Centre-India latest by the 15th of November 2010.
Kindly note that there are only 40 seats available for this course and the registrations will be accepted on first-come first served basis.
I urge you to make good of this opportunity for your faculty and students to avail of this highly needed training programme in gerontology which is the emerging field of studies in the near future.
Hon. President, ILC-Ilongevetic@gmail.com
Thursday, November 4, 2010
Sun glows for a Day,
Candle for an Hour,
Matchstick for a Minute,
But a Wish can Glow for Days Forever.
So this Diwali , the festival of lights I Wish You and your Family Glowing Diwali.
Happy Diwali and Happy New Year to all my readers and followers.
Love you all,
Love , Care and Respect your Elders.