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Cayman Islands Government

Enhancing Seniors' Wellness

At the Older Persons Month Wellness Fair, front (L-R) Senior Etta Ebanks; Chief Officer in the Ministry of Community Affairs and Housing Dorine Whittaker; HSA Nurse Joy Merren; and Senior Oliver Miller; back (L-R) Minister of Community Affairs and Housing Mike Adam and DCFS Adult Coordinator Dawn Rankine.

...we work to ensure that our older residents are well cared for with respect to their physical, emotional, spiritual and material well-being.

—Minister of Community Affairs and Housing Mike Adam

Minister of Community Affairs and Housing, the Hon. Mike Adam has underscored his ministry's commitment to improving the quality of life for the elderly.

Minister Adam was speaking at the Seniors Wellness Fair held at the Seafarers Association on Wednesday, 14 October. The fair looked at all aspects of seniors' health and care.

"Through the Department of Children and Family Services, we work to ensure that our older residents are well cared for with respect to their physical, emotional, spiritual and material well-being.

"In instances where the family is facing economic difficulties, the department will also help wherever possible," he added.

Mr. Adam reminded more than 80 seniors that facilities such as the West Bay Golden Age Home now under construction, and the day care centres in North Side are part of plans to improve their lives.

"The provision for day care at the Golden Age Home is being expanded and the new West Bay facility will allow the DCFS to cater to more seniors who do not need residential care, as well as their families," he said.

DCFS Director Deanna Look Loy noted that her department will also be taking steps to protect seniors from abuse, explaining that in particular, some of their government benefits are not being used as intended.

"We will be looking at guidelines and regulations to protect our seniors in the same way that we have certain protection against child abuse," she said.

As a first step, the DCFS is currently conducting a survey to assess the extent to which benefits are actually being used to support their well-being.

"We want to ensure that our seniors are being taken care of and that they do enjoy the full benefit of our assistance," Mrs. Look Loy noted.

Others who addressed the seniors were General Practice Co-ordinator at the Cayman Islands Hospital Dr. Anna Matthews, whose topic was coping with heart disease. Health Services Authority Nurse Joy Merren spoke on the H1N1 Virus, and Cayman Islands Dental Clinic Nurse Susan Seales addressed dental issues.

Crime prevention tips were shared by Constable Dave Cumberbatch of the Community Neighbourhood Police, while Mr. Kenneth Figuera of the Cayman Islands Mental Health Department discussed mental health, and Social Worker Jasmine Powell spoke to the seniors about managing their finances.

(GIS)

For further information contact: Prudence Barnes