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Greater access to healthcare information needed for over 65s

recent report suggests that seniors living in the UK are less likely to give negative feedback about poor health care or, as is more likely the case, have had no introduction to how to go about issuing complaints – a scenario that is prompting age awareness organisations to call for simpler access to this procedure.

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Greater access to healthcare information needed for over 65s

recent report suggests that seniors living in the UK are less likely to give negative feedback about poor health care or, as is more likely the case, have had no introduction to how to go about issuing complaints – a scenario that is prompting age awareness organisations to call for simpler access to this procedure.

The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman has revealed that people over the age of 65 are reluctant to complain about health care or do not know how to go about registering their concern.

At a time when a growing need for proper support in sourcing affordable mobility tools such as cheap stairlifts and other life-improving equipment is prevalent, the elderly are also facing challenges in other areas of their healthcare. The report demonstrates how 56% of people over 65 have previously experienced issues but did not make a complaint afterwards.

Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman Julie Mellor said that their reluctance to report incidences could “lead to missed opportunities to improve the service for others” and that seniors could well be “suffering in silence.”

Furthermore, 20% of respondents were unsure of how they would raise concerns if need be. This is an issue that healthcare watchdogs and age charities want to see ameliorated. They recommend a more proactive approach on behalf of NHS providers to reassure patients that complaining would not bear any repercussions and ensure that they understand how to volunteer feedback.

A spokesman from Healthwatch England added: “Without this support, thousands of incidents will continue to go under the radar every year and mistakes will never be learnt from.”

The report follows recent news implying better access to the internet would help older people lead more active, independent lives in their retirement. Now it appears the same message about informing seniors of options in their healthcare, such as funding solutions to cover the cost of a stairlift or advice on issuing complaints around medical neglect, is being repeated in the report published this week.

Receiving and responding to people’s experiences is pivotal in identifying areas for improvement, and making healthcare information readily available allows the elderly to live a more independent, fruitful life for longer.

Image Credit: Myfuture (flickr.com)

 
 
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