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March 29, 2011

Committee on Ageing Launches New Seniors Information Hub (AUSTRALIA)

RDCOTA launches new seniors information hub
28 Mar, 2011

REDLANDS District Committee on the Ageing (RDCOTA) recently launched its Seniors Information Plus service.

Seniors in need of information about seniors' issues, including legal matters, elder abuse, care facilities, funeral plans, counselling or other issues, or who need help to contact or respond to a business or government department, can seek help through Seniors Information Plus.
RDCOTA president Tony Christinson said the service, which was run by trained volunteers, did not provide the actual information, but did provide comprehensive advice on where to find information and how to access it, including providing relevant forms where possible.
"Our research showed we needed an information hub like this in the Redlands," Mr Christinson said.
"There is no other face-to-face venue offering this kind of thing.
"Most places rely on telephone or Internet contact and some seniors don't cope well with that."
RDCOTA former president Ross Wiseman, who was the organisation's president when a seniors information hub concept was first proposed three years ago, agreed.
"The need for this hub arose first and foremost from the move of RDCOTA from its previous premises at the back of the (Redland) hospital to the current RDCOTA building," Mr Wiseman said.
"On moving here, we quickly became aware of the number of people 'just dropping in' for information or advice on all sorts of things concerned with the care of seniors."
Mr Wiseman said his research at the time had shown the complexity of information about seniors' issues, in particular aged care, often presented a challenge to older people.
"A major issue was about electronic information being unsuitable for seniors; from computers (and) accessing information on the Internet to automatic reply telephone systems that confuse most of us," he said.
"It was clear that many seniors just want someone who will give them the time so that they can explain in detail what their circumstances are.
Mr Wiseman said another issue for older people was telephone help lines.
"There are a range of them and many seniors are confused by such complexity and are not sure who to ring for what," he said.

The RDCOTA Seniors Information Plus service is open during RDCOTA office hours, 9.30am to 2.30pm, Monday to Friday.
To access the service, contact the RDCOTA office - 3488 0680 - to make an appointment.

SOURCE:    The Bayside Bulletin

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