No one wants to admit to getting old, but it happens to everyone. Now in my senior years I can speak out on what it is about older folk that is so off-putting to those younger. This debate gained news worthiness in Australia because of a Royal Commission into Aged Care recently. Inspired by treatment of such people in nursing homes and elsewhere my fear is being subjected to a fraction of what was exposed as a result should the need arrives.
In these homes the most vulnerable are often bashed, underfed, denied treatment, and generally treated as money-making commodities for their owners. So should anyone be subjected to that?
Lack of adequate and untrained staff adds to the problem. Because of profit such venues operate on tight budgets and costs are stripped to a minimum. While many are subsidised by governments they collect and pocket that money without improving services.
The question now being asked is should older people stay in their own homes and have better and more adequate support to do so. That would include provision of workers to carry out essential staff to help them cope with things.
Many older people lapse into a state of deep depression and are fearful of engaging in social contact or of doing more for themselves. The governments are often at fault in this regard because of the restriction placed on those who receive a pension.
The Social Security payment comes with huge consequences if one earns money or attempts to do things outside of becoming dependent on the system. That denies people of their independence and freedom to do things that would help with their self-esteem and abilities to cope.
The governments are facing huge financial commitments if they go down the path of providing more in-house and assisted care. It will add up to be billions of dollars. The question then becomes one of helping older people to maintain their independence by allowing them to earn money by using their skills well into old age, and still receiving the pension.
The outcome might be a far better economy because of the flow of money now denied to it. By putting harsh restrictions on the elderly they feel what the governments expect them to be, that is useless dependents that are frowned on by most of society. The answer could be must simpler than now considered simply by allowing people to continue to function instead of locking them up in institutions where death is their only avenue for escape.