Welcome to the initial installment of Adventures in Eldercare. Readers may already be familiar with me as a health care provider in Simcoe for the last quarter century. In the last few years I became intensely interested in how we treat the eldest members of our society, the conditions and challenges that these gentle people face every day. I then studied to becoming a Certified Senior Adviser and this was followed with the opening of Victoria Eldercare, a Norfolk based home care service matching exceptional caregivers with seniors needing assistance to live comfortably and safely in their own homes. I hope you enjoy this series and that the information provided is helpful. So….Let’s get started.
Next year a most significant event will occur, the first baby boomer will received an envelope containing an Old Age Security pension cheque. This will herald the dawning of a new era. Thanks to improved nutrition, hygiene and health care, for the first time in history this day will mark the beginning of a time when there will be two generations of seniors.
These two generations of seniors are currently referred to as young-seniors and old-seniors. The terms should improve as the demographic becomes more established. And by more established, I mean when this new demographic re-creates every facet of our society. Society will actually be turned upside down, literally! The traditional visual portrayal of Canadian society is a triangle, the large base is filled with children and each generation older is smaller until at the top of the triangle are the oldest members of the society. But by 2030 that triangle will be completely inverted, children will make up the smallest segment and the two generations of seniors will occupy the largest demographic on top. The challenges that this will bring to society are numerous, some we know of, others will arise.
In future installments I will explore issues that effect both groups of seniors, the caregivers and the care-receivers, different types of home care, safety issues, the importance of companionship and community, the sandwich generation, Alzheimer’s and other dementia’s, old age security and CPP, respite and hospice care. Even the political implications of the growing senior population are in their infancy, I will keep you updated on new developments as they unfold. It really is a whole new ballgame.
Please send me your ideas for future columns, your feed-back and your experiences. I can be reached at the Victoria Eldercare office, 519-429-2644
or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. I look forward to your hearing from you.