Digital inclusion in older life

It’s something that we keep talking about here at OPAAL – because we know how important it is; digital Inclusion for older people. We know that those aged 65 and over are far less likely to be online than younger people. The Office of National Statistics holds data on the numbers of internet users in … Continued

Volunteering in later life

Nobody will have escaped the impact of the loss of many hundreds of thousands of volunteers, who, because they were aged over 70, were asked to stay at home as coronavirus began to sweep the nation.  I had been furloughed from my part time job, so in order to help plug the gap, I like … Continued

Older people and cash during Covid-19

According to a fascinating research paper, “Alternatives to cash” by Kirsty Bagnall, (April 2020) for Ambition for Ageing, which you can find on the link here, almost 3 million people are reliant completely on cash.  And for more than 25m, it is still a necessity and cash transactions still account for about 40% of all … Continued

The neglect of people with hearing loss in homes and hospitals

About half a million elderly people live in UK residential homes and hospitals. 70% have hearing problems (1). Hearing loss increases the risk of developing dementia by up to five times. Hearing aids can help to prevent or delay dementia (2) but they require regular cleaning and their plastic tubing needs replacing every few months. … Continued

Memory not what it once was?

As we age, we all can experience changes that can cause glitches in our brain functions, making things we have always found easy to do, much harder. It can sometimes take us longer to learn and recall things; we’re maybe not as quick as we once were; and we can start to worry about our … Continued

LGBTQ+ people and care and support

 An overview ‘People of all sexualities have the right to equal respect, value and integrity’ (Davies, N. et al. 1996, 22). Societal attitudes towards people who identify under the LGBTQ+ umbrella have undergone a significant change since the Equality Act (2010) affording greater protection from discrimination. However, although many LGBTQ+ people are able to live … Continued

Maureen’s story

Here is the wonderful Maureen, who has been involved in a really tough battle with cancer. Maureen has had two volunteer advocates to help her during this difficult time – but she helps them in return by being so inspiring! Here is what Maureen had to say about her involvement with advocates. “Although I don’t … Continued

An essay on loneliness and isolation

Loneliness and isolation are words indicate that a person may feel abandoned or left alone against their wishes or choice. However, it is possible to feel lonely or isolated when living with others, maybe even in the company of relatives and friends. Therefore it is important to distinguish between loneliness and being alone. For example … Continued

Role of advocates within a medical context

Elderly and isolated people can be vulnerable when ill health adds to their existing problems. Patients may need extra support to express and secure their choices for treatment, especially where the patient’s choice may differ from the medical team. The advocate can help the patient formulate his or her expressed desires into a treatment plan … Continued

Loneliness in the older generation

  Older people can be particularly vulnerable to isolation and loneliness leading to anxiety, depression and lack of confidence, which in turn can cause serious health problems. We can all help the elderly find ways to overcome loneliness, even if they live alone and find it hard to get out. There are thousands of older … Continued