Author: Age Cymru
Published on 15 July 2013 02:00 PM
Responding to comments made by the UK social care Minister Norman Lamb that Neighbourhood Watch groups should help lonely pensioners, Age Cymru’s Head of Policy and Public Affairs Graeme Francis says:
“Loneliness is a big issue among older people and social isolation is a strong risk factor for poor mental health that is experienced by 1,000,000 older people in the UK.
“This is why we all need to look out for older people in our communities because good neighbours can really make a difference to isolated older people.
“However, while good neighbours can provide friendship, support and practical help for older people, they are no substitute for a well-supported care system.
“Very often helping older people with basic tasks - such as washing and dressing, can require specialist skills such as manual handling.
“Otherwise there is a risk that the older people themselves won’t be treated safely, with sensitivity, or with dignity.”