More Insight into Gender Equality and Health

Today The Lancet has published a series of papers on on Gender Equality, Norms, and Health. This is a collection of five papers, led by Gary Darmstadt of the Stanford King Center on Global Development and his colleagues, that provides a new analysis and insight into the impact of gender inequalities and norms on health, and the opportunities that exist within health systems, programmes, policies, and research to transform gender norms and inequalities. The series of papers highlight that potential advances in health and development are thwarted by systemic neglect of gender by health institutions across the globe.

They also show that the same systems that perpetuate these injustices against women and girls also harm men and boys and gender and sexual minorities. As a result they affect a broad array of health outcomes for all people. Through this series of papers the authors hope to inform the global health community of effective actions to recognise and transform gender inequalities, and their intersections with other social inequalities—including those related to age, race/ethnicity, religion, and socioeconomic status.

Their ultimate goal is to catalyse actions to enable all people to live to their full human potential, by upholding human rights and improving health and well-being for all.

You can access the papers and commentary around them at

https://www.thelancet.com/series/gender-equality-norms-health

You are likely to hear a lot more about this work via mainstream media in the next few days so if it sparks your interest and you want to avoid the hype, remember to go back to the source.

So why does this matter to older people?

Ageism and sexism in health services affects the quality of care, patient-provider interaction, patient self-perceptions, and the planning of health education programmes for older women. The stereotyping of older women in health care encounters, although often subtle, can have far-reaching effects on the health status of older women (Sharpe, 1995)

That’s without discussing ageism towards women in the workplace, media and elsewhere….

Time to Raise the Equality Flag (Again!)

Late again with this post. Not sure now why I promised a new post every Friday when now I rarely manage to post it on time. 😦

Enough moaning about my own tardiness, this is more important!

Earlier this month the International Longevity Centre (ILC) released a report by their own  researchers and other researchers based at University College London (UCL), and Cardiff University. The work was funded by the Wellcome Trust. The report called “Raising the equality flag: Health inequalities among older LGBT people in the UK” which you can download from HERE pulls together the results from a  project conducted across two phases: a scoping review of existing evidence and a new analysis drawing on
several existing UK datasets.

Their research, like previous research concluded that a lifetime of prejudice and stigma is leading to worse physical and mental health, poorer access to health and social care, as well as greater levels of social isolation and loneliness among older LGBT people Moreover, older non-heterosexual men are more likely to be living with a long-term limiting illness and have lower overall life satisfaction.

These health inequalities have been ongoing issues for many years and while there may some improvement in attitude there seems to be very little improvement on outcomes.

So what needs to be done? Well to reinforce the points that this report makes we need
action to

(a) ensure mainstream health and care services are inclusive, i.e. they provide environments where older LGBT people feel safe and comfortable (Are they not supposed to be able to do this already?)

(b) Develop a national standard or quality assurance framework around equality and diversity training for the needs of older LGBT people.

Presumably because we aren’t doing (a) already 😦

 

Older People’s Events During Edinburgh Festival Time!

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In Scotland, the world’s biggest arts festival starts today. As always I’ll spend some time through there over the month and try and take in some shows/events etc. with my family.

So what might be worth seeing that focuses on Older People? Well, these aren’t my recommendations this list comes from Luminate, Scotland’s creative ageing organisation, which runs a diverse programme of creative events and activities throughout the year. So they know better than me what to see. So here is their list of recommendations.

What to See in Edinburgh 2018

I’m intrigued by one in particular… Who Do You Want to Wipe Your Bum?

Which features Dr Anna Schneider of Edinburgh Napier University highlighting a few things worth thinking about; considering you’ve got an 80% chance of needing care at the end of your life.

I suspect she will have to say something about this Global Health Workforce Labor Market Projections for 2030

Hello from Manchester’s @BSGManchester2018 #BSG2018

 

conference_FlyerSo this week I am at the British Society of Gerontology (BSG) Conference 2018. I don’t think that I have ever been to a larger Conference and there is so much in the Conference Programme that it is almost big enough to require a wheelbarrow!

Anyway, later today I am speaking with Becky Moran the Care Home Educational Facilitator (CHEF) from NHS Lanarkshire talking about the BSG study day we held back in August 2017. See This Link for our report to Ageing Issues

At the conference the following has been announced that other people might be interested in.

Firstly, the Centre for Better Ageing at https://www.ageing-better.org.uk/ is releasing a new report today called Home Adaptations: A Typical Journey, which explores personal and professional perspectives on home adaptations. Go to the website and download it.

Secondly, Ageing and Society have released some full-text versions of some of its most interesting articles online. There are a range of topics so if you want to take a look at what is available see www.cambridge.org/ASO-BSG18

Finally, the Centre for Policy on Ageing has pooled together some of its Information Resources. An interesting one to look at is called “Policies on Ageing” which is an online resource providing easy access to government policy documents and key national reports and briefings that are raising the profile of issues around the support of older people and an ageing population. See:

www.cpa.org.uk/cpa/policies_on_ageing

Hope you find something interesting.

 

A Xmas Mash-up

Music-xmas-tree-300x286

Firstly a Very Merry Christmas to everyone who reads this that celebrates. If you don’t, hope you are enjoying the winter solstice which is a much older festival and was celebrated more widely (Stonehenge for example is aligned to sunrise on the winter solstice).

So after a few weeks of mainly single topics this week I have decided to be a bit more eclectic!

Firtly, its good to see that Age UK have just launched a new resource which offers practical advice on providing the kind of services in which older lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT) people can feel safe to be themselves. Called the Safe to be me resource guide, it has been written for anyone working or volunteering in health, social care or the voluntary sector who supports older people who are LGBT. It will also prove useful for people involved in training because it encourages them integrate discussions and scenarios relating to the needs of people who are LGBT into what they provide.

Secondly another of these great papers which tells you more about the things you take for granted. This time its about the healing power of music! An easy thing to say and something we are all probably aware of BUT what is music actually doing?

Well this paper from a team based at the University of Helsinki in Finland has a go at answering that question for people with neurological conditions. It is a literature review that looks at music’s potential for aiding the rehabilitation of people with various neurological conditions. Evidence of an impact is greatest for stroke and dementia, but music-based interventions can also help cognition, motor function and emotional well-being in people with Parkinson’s disease, epilepsy and multiple sclerosis. More of their findings can be found HERE

 

Finally and totally unrelated to anything above, I found an open access literature review on appropriate ways to measure lying and standing blood pressure in hospital for frail older adults. So for all of you concerned about older people who fall frequently possibly because of postural hypertension here is a guide to the:

Measurement of lying and standing blood pressure in hospital

Can we have more open access article like this RCNi?