Saturday, June 26, 2010

Elderly Observation- Observation 4

This picture on the top shows that though the elderly are old, they still want to go overseas and have fun! Though elderly people look old, they are still young at heart.

I interviewed this elderly (I am sorry no audio or video recordings again) who said that when he was young, he did not take the opportunity to bring his children out on a holiday with him though he wanted to, so his children fulfilled his dream by bring him to Japan.

I feel that elderly just love dreaming of their kids to bring them overseas, so that they can enjoy it as much as their children. Elderly just wants to relax and have fun!!!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Phun Elderly Room

The highlighted objects in the picture way on top shows an elderly on the bed holding onto a crossbar to pull herself up so that she could not fall on the ground when she wakes up.
The highlighted objects in this picture on top shows an elderly in the toilet. Beside it is a light sensing detector. As long as the light sensing detector detects the elderly, it will light up the toilet. There is also a crossbar for the elderly to hold onto so that the elderly would not have to worry about falling while bathing or slipping on the toilet bowl.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Elderly Challenge - Observation 3

This picture on the left shows the elderly choosing her vegetables at the wet market at Admiralty. The elderly usually come here to buy their own ingredients so that they, or their caretakers can cook food to eat. I feel that even though the elderly are very old, they still take the initiative to buy their own food.

I interview this elderly who did not want an audio nor a video interview to take place. She said that everyday, she would go to the wet market so that she could buy all the ingredients she needs to cook to eat. She said it was difficult to carry all the ingredients(though she really wants too, but she is very old now), that is why she has a caretaker to help her.

I feel that she really wants to be young again, just like most other elderly. She also told me she does not want her caretaker to hold her hand or help her onto bed, only her family. All elderly just want another chance at life, they want to feel young and make up their errors.

My next observation would be in Japan. I hope there is something different there. I can only post my fourth observation in June 26th.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Elderly Observation- Observation 2

Every fortnight, we would go back to my mother's old neighborhood estate in Marsiling. There are lots of good food to eat. These are all cooked by elderly people who have been staying there since 30 years ago. In general, there are lots of old people living there.

I noticed a common trait among them (similar to my grandmother):

Most of them are weak in the knees. The serious ones would need to use walking sticks. The more serious ones are wheelchair bound.

I also noticed another common trait: Most of the elderly do not like to be confined to their homes. They like to spend time at the void decks to have chats or play chess. I would like to take a picture or a video of them but they did not allow me to.

I am feeling perturbed. One day my parents would grow old too. One day, I would grow old too.

Would I rely solely on employed caretakers to take care of us? How would I feel if my children were to leave me in an old folks home, visiting me once a month?

We should not solely rely on external caretakers. We should also take care of them ourselves to show that they are still being loved. In this way, they would still find purpose living in this world.

Looking at their mobility and issues faced, we should design more elder-friendly environment and living area. In this way, the elderly can live happily, without having to worry that they are going to get hurt or anything. They can feel safe.

To begin this journey, I should start to spend more time with my grandmother.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Part 1: Understanding The Elderly Challenge

The four key recommendations are as follows:

1. Housing options for the old: There must be a wide array of housing options to suit the needs of the elderly. Singapore should be the best homes for all ages.

2. Traveling accessibilities for the old: Singapore should be a friendly place, a place for elderly to go around and exercise and have fun. Everything should be elder-friendly. The transport system(Buses, trains etc.) should be barrier-free

3. Caring for the old: The elderly needs endless care and protection. All the healthcare systems must be efficient, cheap and easily accessible for the elderly.

4. Variety of opportunities for the elderly: elderly people must lead healthy lifestyles and build more relationships between their families

One way the CAI report is recommending to make our public housing more elderly-friendly:

--- they are planning to build more houses that are more elderly friendly.

State two ways on how we can ensure that the quality of elderly care here in Singapore is affordable:

We could raise the efficiency of the healthcare system AND make the healthcare system more cheaper for the elderly.

After reading the CAI report, what do you are the THREE things that you can do, as an SST student, to help overcome these elderly challenges:

1. We can design many tools. Two possible tools are as follows:

(a) a special handy walking stick that has the following properties:

-It tells time and the LCD display must be large enough to be easily seen by elderly eyes

-Foldable and Light (perhaps it could be kept in the pocket) and yet strong & sturdy

(b) a motion-sensor to be installed in each 1-Room or 2-Room HDB rental flat where elderly lives alone. If it senses that there’s no human movement in the flat for more than 24 hours (could be re-set), a warning signal would be sent to a control station (or Police HeadQuarters) to alert the authority in charge.

2. We can organize half yearly (or quarterly) trips to the old folks home to accompany them and talk to them.

3. The elderly, particularly those that live alone, can be provided reassurance through community organizations that offer live telephone chat. As SST students, we can be volunteers to such organization. For example, we could 'work' there for 2 hours every month.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Elderly Challenge - Observation 1

I have uploaded this video to show how much difficulty an elderly has in order to reach and rest on her bed. She is my grandmother. She hates to be immobile. She does not like her caretaker to help her up on her bed. She prefers us, her family, to have priviledge to help her. Only when she is having flu or very tired she would allow her caretaker to give her a hand in getting out of the bed, walking around or bathing. Her legs are weak and her back often aches. In actual fact, she should use a walking stick to walk. However, she finds the walking stick too heavy and cumbersome. She would prefer to walk more slowly than to make use of it. She likes to eat very salty food. This is because her taste buds are affected due to huge quantity of medicine she is taking daily. Hence, her caretaker would need to cook food appropriate for her, balancing her dietary needs and health needs. In our bathroom, there’s a grab bar installed. Also, we have placed non-slippery mat on the bathroom floor too. This is to prevent her from slipping. My mum also purchase special floor solution for caretaker to mop the floor (it would make our ceremic floor tiles less slippery). I think elderly people may be old, but they have their pride.