HCMC takes heed welfare for senior people

Speaking at the seminar named ‘Solutions and models of taking care of elderly people”, Dr. Pham Quang Huy from the National Academy of Public Administration proposed the government setting up a medium –term strategy to ensure senior citizen’s income including pension and welfare to protect them.

A group of people visit Thi Nghe house where many elderly pepole reside (Photo: SGGP)

A group of people visit Thi Nghe house where many elderly pepole reside (Photo: SGGP)

The meeting was yesterday held by the HCMC Institute for Development Studies (HIDS) and the welfare caring association for elderly and disabled people in Asia and Japan.
Participants said that there are the number of important things that Ho Chi Minh City authorities have to take into consideration such as building community-based houses for caring senior people, developing more care home that specialized in looking after elderly as well as training people to look after elderly people at homes.
With the elderly population of 460,000 people in Ho Chi Minh City accounting for 5.4 percent of the whole population, the city is encountering social security problems for senior people, said Le Van Thanh from HIDS
Vietnamese elderly people dislike to be sent to an old people’s house but if they stay at home, nobody take care of them because their children must go out to work.
Mr. Thanh said that some senior people accumulate not enough for spending when retiring while there are more and more old people in the city, which is a burden for young people. This leads to difficulties for their children.
At present, some elderly people still work while others live on social welfare.
Thanh said that covering all expenses including money for their old parents are a headache for all families especially those are in low-income group.
As many as ageing people are not eligible for social insurance; therefore, they encounter risks in economy and health problems.
Le Chu Giang, former head of the HCMC Department of Labor, Invalids and Social Issues' Social Services Section, the city has 11 houses sponsored by organizations and individuals to freely look after 700 difficult elderly people while 300 senior people are residing in other pay five houses.
Elderly people live in an old’s houses only when their children have no choice. Additionally, charge of VND5 million per month is a problem for these poor families who want to send their parents to the special house.
Accordingly, many elderly people still stay with the children at homes. As per Vietnamese old people’s thinking, they want to connect with kids hence, the authorities should pay attention to build community-based old houses.
Dr. Nguyen Thi Hoai Huong from HIDS informed the meeting that care services for senior residents as per demand such as talking to old people, buying food, making food, feeding, bathing , walking old people, in HCMC have been started.
Ms. Huong thought that community-based caring models should be expanded because elderly people can stay at their homes.
Accordingly, lecture of Cadre training institute Trinh Thi Hien said that it is urgent to develop social work for looking after elderly people.
The Medicine University Hospital in HCMC’s district 1 take the lead in setting up a department to take care of elderly patients. Hospital managers have planned to expand the caring service for these citizens at homes.

By MANH HOA – Translated by UYEN PHUONG

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