Making decisions about how we want to live as we age are tough, wherever you live in the world. That’s why Dr Jane Barratt, Secretary General of the International Federation on Ageing in Canada is calling for communities to create opportunities for these conversations.

Dr Barratt, who will be in Yackandandah in November presenting on innovations in aged care, says decisions we have to make about ageing are difficult, therefore, they are too often taboo subjects.

Her presentation, Ageing well: Innovations from around the world is being hosted by Yackandandah Health and includes a Q&A panel with Yackandandah Health CEO, Annette Nuck, Dr Helen Haines the Senior Research Fellow and Director, Rural Health Academic Network and Indigo Shire Mayor, Cr Jenny O’Connor.

“Fear of being alone and asking: ‘what am I going to do because I want to maintain my independence?’ are all decisions a person has to make. It’s difficult to be ready to get old and some people won’t make these decisions,” Dr Barratt said.

“The best thing that we can say is that communities create the opportunities for these conversations – community is essential as we grow old.”

Yackandandah Health has invited Dr Barratt to start this conversation as it embarks on planning an intergenerational model of care.

CEO, Annette Nuck said Dr Barratt will share a range of insights and approaches from her international work and experience including advances in robotics, brain health and intergenerational models.

“For too long the aged care focus has been on illness. Older people are older than the rest of us, not necessarily sick. Dr Barratt’s work is heavily focused on a wellness model, where we support older people to enjoy their life and do the things they want to do,” Ms Nuck said.

“That’s also our focus. We are really looking forward to the conversation that Dr Barratt’s talk will start in communities, in the health sector and more broadly,” she said.

Dr Barratt said the future of aged care is focused on creating environments that support older people to live well.

“The decisions for older people are many; work, family, support, housing. When they need medical care, even in cities, the complicated routine of going to specialists and GPs and them not talking to each other is challenging to navigate. There are many developments helping with these things, such as specialists using virtual consulting. There are lots of ways we can create environments to support older people,” she said.

Dr Barratt’s presentation will cater to aged care and allied health professionals and students, families and individuals. It includes global developments, technology and brain health lessons we can all apply to improve our cognitive reserves.

Ageing Well: Innovations from around the world – Dr Jane Barratt, Secretary General of the International Federation on Ageing

WHEN: November 9, 2018 – 2pm for a 2.30pm start

WHERE: Yackandandah Hall, High Street, Yackandandah Vic 3749. Early bird tickets are now available .