IFRC

Singapore Red Cross launches first aid programme to support an aging population

Published: 13 October 2014 16:29 CET

By Singapore Red Cross

When Mr Yeo had a fall in 2010, his doctor suspected he was about to have a stroke. “The suffering I went through. I had given up hope for life. The doctor told me, ‘In your case, there is no medicine. But you can do a lot of exercises,” he said. “Then I had a second fall, and this time it was quite severe. The pain was intolerable. I needed help very badly. I asked my wife to call for help. I wished there was someone who could come forward immediately. In that moment I thought of nothing but help.”

Around the world, the elderly face certain medical emergencies more frequently than others – cardiac arrest, strokes, difficulty in breathing and falls.

For countries such as Singapore, which have a significant – and growing – elderly population and a low rate of trained first responders, this is a major problem. When older people suffer a medical emergency, those around them are often not equipped to provide help. Often people who have suffered a cardiac arrest turn up in hospital with very little medical assistance before reaching the hospital.

In order to best serve the aging population and to ensure that their health needs are adequately met, Singapore Red Cross has launched a First Aid training course for people who look after elderly friends, relatives or neighbours. It teaches these life-saving skill in a way which is both fun and easy to understand, so that anyone can take part.

Currently the Red Cross is working closely with the Agency for Integrated Care (AIC) and Asian Women Welfare Association (AWWA) to offer a customised First Aid for Caregivers for Elderly to all who might need these skills one day.

Besides training, they are also aiming to provide a customised first aid kit, with the goal of helping hundreds of households be more prepared for any emergency that might occur.




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