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Opinion

Feasibility study discusses aged care services in the Cook Islands

Tuesday 13 September 2022 | Written by CI News Staff | Published in Local, National

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Feasibility study discusses aged care services in the Cook Islands
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Key services to support Cook Islanders over the age of 60 years were discussed at a workshop held late last month.

The workshop was attended by key Government officials, leaders of Civil Society Organisations and a handful of dynamic thinkers from across the community. They gathered together to ignite conversations around what aged care services could look like in the future for the Cook Islands, a statement from Ministry of Internal Affairs said.

Secretary of Internal Affairs Anne Herman said: “17 per cent of our population are over the age of 60 and this proportion continues to grow. We have pockets of those over 60 in our community who benefit from spaces to interact with others, those who require constant support with self-care, and those requiring support to rehabilitate following significant life or health events. We also recognise the families of loved ones who also need assurance and support.”

Whilst there are a range of services already available offered by civil society and community groupings, and there are supportive benefits assisting with some of the cost of managing care for elderly in need, Herman said “we all know we can support each other better to do better, and we all agree now is the right time to be having these important conversations”.

The conversations over the first day of the co-design workshop really allowed each participant to bring their best selves to the table inclusive of their own thinking and experience, the statement said. 

“We identified key services we would like our people to have access to and why and how these fit within our cultural values, and therefore services may change over time.”

The second day of the co-design workshop focusing on defining these services more fully, identifying how these services will be delivered and by whom was scheduled to be held last month.

“We are grateful to our team at PriceWaterhouseCoopers New Zealand for delivering a workshop format which clearly had every participant energised and engaged from start to finish.”

The workshop was part of the Ministry of Internal Affairs project: Feasibility Study on Aged Care Services in the Cook Islands.  The Asian Development Bank has partnered with the Ministry on this project and is funded by the Republic of Korea e-Asia and Knowledge Partnership Fund.