VISION: Older people in rural Surrey are able to live in, and contribute to, their community and have access to health, care and other services.

This could be achieved by:

* Improved access to services such as primary health care and food shops for older people
* Initiatives to address those isolated and vulnerable including befriending schemes
* Community transport provision that meets local needs
* Voluntary sector initiatives which help older people in rural communities
* Social enterprise being supported to play a role in the provision of local services


Answer - Agree

The vision is attractive and older people are definitely able to live in and contribute to their communities. However, in practice it is not implemented at present.

For the frail elderly, access to health care and other services is strictly rationed. For those suffering from strokes, for example, there is a statutory obligation to provide up to 6 weeks' re-ablement care but Surrey chooses not to offer this, at times offering 2 weeks re-ablement and at other times offering no re-ablement care at all.

Reliance on the voluntary sector or "befriending" schemes is a fig leaf to cover the inadequate provision of actual care that will facilitate older people being able to contribute actively to and remain within their communities.  Improved access to health care should be a priority.  Better provision of care and support for care staff would be helpful.

For the energetic retired members of the community, their value in the community should be appreciated, since they are the main backbone of most voluntary services and they should be supported, not just taken for granted

Wednesday the 20th - Published by Normandy Action Group, 166 Glaziers Lane, Guildford GU3 2EB - with thanks to Keith Witham, Surrey County Councillor - Hostgator Coupon Template