Caring for the Elderly
September 18, 2010
School of Nursing, Kochi
The aged are distinctive and unique, and are to be treasured. The National Conference on Geriatric Nursing organized at the Amrita Health Sciences campus on September 8 and 9 reiterated this message to the nursing community that included clinical nurses, nurse educators and nursing students.
Participants came from all over Kerala as well as other states to learn about recent trends in geriatric care. Nearly 800 delegates participated.
This national conference was the first of its kind in the state of Kerala.
Dr. K. Mohandas, Vice Chancellor, Kerala University of Health and Allied Sciences, Thrissur, inaugurated the conference.
“We need to acquire more knowledge and expertise in the area of geriatric care,” he emphasized in his inaugural address. “I congratulate the organizers for taking the initiative to conduct this educative program.”
Swami Poornamritananda Puri delivered the benedictory address. Swamiji explained the beauty of the evening period of one’s life.
“An aged person who learns adequate lessons from life experiences obtains clarity of mind and confidence,” Swamiji stated. “Such a person is not worried and is happy to transcend to a higher level of life.”
“The aged develop intuition from their life’s experiences; such people can make their lives a contribution to the world.”
The conference explored trends and challenges in geriatric nursing, the concept of successful aging, ethico-legal issues in geriatric care and relevant research areas.
“The focus of geriatric nursing should be on the preservation of function and quality of life of the aged,” opined Dr. George Paul, Head of the Department of Geriatric Medicine at Amrita.
“The elderly should be guided on how to deal with experiences of repeatedly dealing with losses such as loss of eye sight, hearing and mobility. The majority fear disability and that gives them a lot of anxiety. The nurses can help by helping inculcate the sense of fortitude in them.”
Others who spoke included Dr. K. Lalitha, Head of the Department of Nursing, NIMHANS, Dr. Mrs. Kanchana S, Principal, Omayalachi College of Nursing, Chennai, Prof. Sheela Pavithran, Vice Principal, Amrita College of Nursing, Dr. (Prof) Sunil K Senan, Department of Geriatric Medicine at Amrita.
“The aim of this conference is to increase expertise in gerontologic care to assure a high quality of service to the elderly,” informed the organizers.
“It was a two-day experience of exquisite knowledge gaining,” stated the participants.