Most older people would like to live independently at home for as long as possible. But how does that work if you become more vulnerable?

Gaining insights with Menzis by spending 24 hours with frail elderly

Menzis wants to mean more to its members. Not only from the moment the hospital bill has to be paid, but also earlier. She wants to give her members more Living Power, pleasure to live your life happily and healthily.

Challenges for living pleasure differ per region. An analysis in the Twente region showed that the aging population is hit hard. More older people are getting older, younger people are leaving, and due to the wide location, loneliness among 75-pluses is a common problem. Menzis asked Branddoctors Mixe to help with forms of recommendations to improve elderly care in Twente.

Visit 24 for hours

Do not think for people, but experience with them what is really important. That is why we opted for a different set-up. With Menzis employees, we visited vulnerable elderly people living at home. Not for a cup of coffee or tea, but for 24 hours. Live, eat and sleep. To experience up close what life in old age looks like.

Most older people would like to live independently at home for as long as possible. But how does that work if you become more vulnerable?

The 24 couples and older people who have given us a glimpse into their lives for a day and a night have taught us a lot. For example, about what is really annoying about incontinence and that we increasingly put aging people in the same box.

Solutions that do justice to people

The knowledge we have gained will only become really valuable if it is shared. With people who are busy with the elderly from their heart and profession. That is why we have shared the insights with more than 40 healthcare professionals and partners from Twente. Where, from different perspectives, we have come up with sometimes surprising solutions and possibilities. Solutions that do justice to elderly people.

Important lessons for elderly care

  • The human measure in incontinence
    For the elderly, incontinence often determines the rhythm of the day. How, where and when the elderly go out, many of them no longer choose completely independently. That is why Menzis is researching how we can make the provision of incontinence material more consistent with daily life.
  • The knowledge of the geriatric medicine specialist
    This specialist doctor knows better than anyone what is going on in the elderly. This is important when making the correct diagnosis, but also when it comes to which medication really has added value and which is not. Menzis will, among other things, make this knowledge more widely available to professionals such as general practitioners and practice assistants.
  • Staying meaningful
    Even though the possibilities and circumstances change, it is still important to live a meaningful life. Due to physical or mental decline, the loss of a partner or friends, it is sometimes a challenge to give life a new, meaningful meaning. Doing something for someone else or doing something that you really enjoy remains very important. Menzis will stimulate initiatives in which giving meaning and reciprocity are central.
  • Household as a pleasant and logical source of movement
    For many elderly people, running a household is an important source of exercise. The laundry must be hung, the dishwasher must be cleared, a garden must be maintained and food must be put on the table. Many people indicate that they want to keep doing this themselves for as long as possible. Together with partners, Menzis is looking into whether we can come to solutions in which people can do their own parts of the household for longer in a pleasant way.
  • Encourage entrepreneurs to come up with solutions for participation
    For many elderly people, contact with others and participation in society is an important part of a meaningful life. In practice, however, there are many 'solutions' where services or products are brought to people, where it is all about the product and not about the people who use it. Consider, for example, table cover or the delivery service from the supermarket. Menzis is in discussion with Albert Heijn about pilots in the Twente region to better facilitate the elderly to do their own shopping.



Published on
November 24 2018

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