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Elderly Persons Health and WellbeingThis chapter considers older persons’ health and wellbeing. As the world population changes there are global challenges to ensure that health and social care systems, individuals, communities and countries meet the needs of older people so that they are empowered to lead active and connected later lives. However, these opportunities are heavily dependent on two fundamental characteristics that of good health and wellbeing and healthy ageing. The conceptualisation of ‘being old or older’ first needs to be considered. The use of 65 as a parameter to measure old age is a political and social construct. Baar et al. (2014) for example noted the tendency to use 60 to 65 as the entrance point to old age and although useful to establish understanding writers in the field of gerontology have argued against such use. Culturally older age can occur from 50 upwards (Baar et al. 2014) as consequence of poor health, education, financial situation and environment and there is no typical older person (World Health Organisation (WHO) 2018a). Other authors have defined no age categorisation boundaries but have referred to a third and fourth age. The third age being conceptualised as a life period full of opportunity and good health and wellbeing, whilst the fourth age is perceived as a period of decline, increasing dependency and ultimately death (Higgs and Gilleard 2015). Therefore, being older is difficult to define and for this chapter 60 will be used as a ‘marker of old age’. There are two lenses from which society view and perceive older people, first by some they are considered a burden, a drain on resources and are less valued. Alternatively, older people are considered wise, dependable individuals who contribute to society, local communities and family life. The increasing older demographic has both immense potential for society but also comes with challenges. This chapter will explore population growth, perceptions of ageing, health and wellbeing in later life, factors that negate against healthy ageing and will end with preventive strategies
The Healthy Futures ProjectThis article discusses the formation of the Healthy Futures Network which is an informal network of schools in the North West who began meeting over a period of several months seeking to address issues relating to the Health and Wellbeing of young people. The health focus was mainly on Obesity and Physical activity. There was however a recognition of the need to address underlying contribution factors relating to health and wellbeing. In 2014, this informal “Network” became the ‘Healthy Futures Network’, a cross-sector partnership between the University of Chester and 8 schools from the North West of England funded by Health Education England (North). The Project was designed to assess how a collaborative network of schools at a regional/sub-regional level could work together to promote health and wellbeing, and to improve emotional health and wellbeing of their pupils. This project was also part of an engagement strategy for raising aspiration and awareness of potential career education opportunities within the NHS.