Every 1st of October is observed as the International Day of Older People to raise awareness about the impact of ageing population and also to ensure about the need of elderly people. The United Nations General Assembly voted on 14 December 1990 to create October 1 as the International Day of Older People, under the Resolution 45/106. The day was first observed on October 1, 1991.
The day is designated to focus and raise awareness about the well-being and needs of the older people. As experts have consistently said, senior citizens worldwide have been the worst-hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. They are the most vulnerable to co-morbidities associated with age. In these extraordinary times, elderly people ‘s depression and mental health problems require special attention.
Theme of International Day of Older Persons 2020
This year the theme of International Day of Older Persons 2020 is- Pandemics: Do They Change How We Address Age and Ageing?
2020 marks the 75th anniversary of the UN and the 30th anniversary of the International Day of Older People. This year also saw the advent of COVID-19, which has triggered worldwide chaos. In view of the higher risks posed by older individuals during the outbreak of pandemics such as COVID-19, policy and programmatic interventions should be aimed at increasing awareness of their particular needs. It is also necessary to consider the importance of older people to their own wellbeing and the various roles they play in the preparedness and response processes of current and future pandemics.
Though this year has also been recognized as the International year of Nurses and Midwives. International Day of the Older Person 2020 will underline the position of healthcare professionals in the health of older people, with specific appreciation of their care profession and a emphasis on the role of women who are relatively undervalued and in most cases not sufficiently paid. The role of the health workers is also highlighted.
The theme of International Day of Older Persons 2020 will aim at:
- Details on the strategic objectives of the healthy ageing decade.
- Raise awareness to the special needs and contributions of older people to their own wellbeing and the wellbeing of the communities they reside in.
- Increased understanding of the role of the health care workers in the preservation and enhancement of the health of older people, with an emphasis on the nursing profession
- Present plans to reduce the inequalities in health between older people in developed and developing countries so that ‘nobody is left behind.’
- Improving understanding of COVID-19 ‘s effects on the elderly and its effect on health policy , planning and attitudes.
The old age problem should not be regarded as a problem for a person as a social issue. We are all going to be old one day and we will face the same circumstance that our elders face today.