Living needs of the elderly

Around the world, people are seeking many and varied ways to help the elderly go on living independent lives longer in their own homes. We live in an ageing society and are living longer. One consequence of this trend that is forecast to rise significantly up to 2025, is that there are going to be fewer people around to look after the ageing population. So, having the elderly live safely at home for longer both takes the pressure off the increasing demand for care and reduces the costs to national health services.

Much research has already been carried out into the ideal living accommodations for service flats, retirement and nursing homes. Less has been undertaken into what modifications to a home or apartment might be necessary to allow elderly, single people or couples to remain living in their homes independently for longer. Even so, many of these studies have been very theoretical, without taking the views of the elderly into account and as a result being ignorant of what they really want and need. In this article, we give a summary of an ACMA study that was carried out in Belgium. In this study, elderly people drew up their wish lists for an ideal home. In addition, we also review a study on permanent living, carried out by De Bouwunie. This is an organisation that promotes both the construction sector and service providers within it.

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Highlights

  • Summarizes a study carried out into the wish lists of elderly people for an ideal home.
  • Reviews a study on permanent living carried out by De Bouwunie.
  • Confirms the discrepancy between modern technologies and home users’ awareness of them.
  • Suggests necessity to distribute correct information for a full understanding of solutions available.

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