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WHO launches a new app to improve care for older people

28th October 2019

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has launched a new app designed to help health and social workers provide better care for older people. It works as a person-centred and coordinated model of care, specific to those with priority conditions. This includes those with limited mobility who may rely on stairlifts at home and those who suffer from malnutrition, vision and hearing loss, cognitive decline and depressive symptoms.

As reported on the WHO’s website, the innovative app is to be used in conjunction with a package of tools including a new handbook, which is a result of two years of extensive consultations with leading experts and stakeholders, including civil society representatives.

Entitled WHO ICOPE Handbook, the app includes interactive guides containing the step-by-step process of screening older people’s health and social care needs, before designing a personalised care plan. It can also be used by organisations to help train their social care workers.

The director of the Department of Maternal, new-born, child and adolescent health and ageing at WHO, Dr Anshu Banerjee, comments: “It is essential that services for older people are included in universal health care packages. At the same time, there needs to be good coordination between the health and social services to provide optimal care when needed. The new package of tools supports healthy ageing with a person-centred and coordinated model of care”  

The app comes at a time of need, as the world’s population is growing older. Based on research conducted by the UN, it’s predicted that 1 in 5 people will be over 60 by 2050 and the number of people aged over 80 is set to triple from 143m to 426m.

Dr Islene Araujo de Carvalho, leader of ageing and integrated care at WH0, comments: “Such innovation will enable older people to continue doing the things they value and prevent them from social isolation and care dependency. Intervening close to where older people live, with active participation of the community and older persons themselves, is essential for a personalized care plan.”

You can learn more or install the WHO ICOPE Handbook App yourself on Google Play.

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This news article is from Handicare UK. Articles that appear on this website are for information purposes only.