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ISSN 2463-5367

Gerontology Matters
November 2016

In this issue:

This will be the final issue of Gerontology Matters for 2016 with the next issue coming to you in January 2017.

From the NZAG executive and administration team, we wish you all the best for these last weeks of 2016 and that you all have a very safe and happy holidays.

A Message from the President


I am writing my president’s message at Canberra Airport on my way home from the Australian Association of Gerontology’s (AAG) annual conference. The conference theme was “Re-Imaging our Future” and ran over three days. Along with Professor Lynne Parkinson, I ran a well-received writing for publication preconference workshop. The conference itself attracted approximately 500 delegates and was a great opportunity for me to catch up with colleagues, meet new people and indulge myself in talking and thinking about gerontology. The only other NZAG member attending the conference was Robyn Barry who presented on her research related to “Flatting for Seniors”.
There was a diversity of speakers from a variety of professional and lay backgrounds, including politicians, academics, consultants, non-governmental organisations and older people themselves. Presentations were equally broad and covered a variety of topics including issues with superannuation, ageing in place, falls, living with long term illnesses, frailty, urban design, workforce development, residential care, age friendly initiatives, caregiving, older workers, health and social service policy, mental health and working with older diverse groups. These topic areas were presented as either a keynote address, poster presentations, concurrent sessions or tabletop sessions. I particularly enjoyed the tabletop sessions. This is where a small group of up to eight people sat at a table and a series of presenters on the same topic circulated around the tables. Presenters had four minutes to present their work followed by six minutes active discussion. I attended a tabletop session on “Ageing, Culture and Identity” which encompassed presentations on providing care to ethnic and cultural minority groups, engaging older people in their care and older people as revolutionaries in challenging ageism.
Naturally, I couldn’t help comparing the AAG conference to ours. While the scale was certainly much greater than ours, I left proud of NZAG and what we consistently achieve. The 2017 AAG conference is to be held in Perth, Western Australia. Hopefully more NZAG members will attend and showcase the great things we do in New Zealand related to gerontology.
Stephen Neville.

Information relevant to NZAG members

2016 NZAG Conference 

Notes from the Final Participatory System and Reflections on the Conference as a whole by Conference Committee member Dr Judith Davey

During the over 60 people stayed for the conference final participatory session on Saturday afternoon and recorded their comments on “stickies” posted up on whiteboards. These notes are based on the conference programme itself and have been distilled from ideas and suggestions which arose from table discussions. Participants offered these in response to questions, closely related to the conference theme –  
  • What have you found useful for Making Active Ageing a Reality in your own experience?
  • What have you picked up from this conference that excites you?
  • What do we need to Make Active Ageing a Reality?
  • What can each of you, as conference participants, do to Make Active Ageing a Reality? 
While the results will guide NZAG in its ongoing activities, everyone, whether at the conference or not, can use these ideas and advocate for change. This applies to those of use already using a Gold Card, but also to people working with, helping and supporting older people. Everyone comes into contact with older people in their everyday lives. 
Opportunities suggested in the session included informing the local body election process – as voters and in “educating” new councils and boards; the final stages of developing the Health of Older People Strategy and its implementation; and even the Alzheimer’s Society “Memory Walk”, which took place in rain and wind on the Sunday after the conference ended.   

Read Dr Davey's complete report here >

New Zealand: Changing the balance of social care for older people - simulating scenarios under demographic ageing in New Zealand

Source: Health and Social Care in the Community

The demographic ageing of New Zealand society, as elsewhere in the developed world, has dramatically increased the proportion of older people (aged 65 years and over) in the population. This has major policy implications for the future organisation of social care. Our objective was to test the effects on social care use, first, of putative changes in the overall disability profile of older people, and second, of alterations to the balance of their care, i.e. whether it was community-based or residential.

Read more here >

New Zealand: Opinion - Faith-based or Commercial? Promoting social value in aged care

Source: Judith Davey Blog

When older people and their families/whanau are looking for aged care they have choices – commercial or voluntary/community sector? If we need residential care would we go for Oceania/BUPA/Ryman or look at Presbyterian Support/Wesleycare/Anglican Living. And what would guide our choices? What makes the difference? 
In 2015 the New Zealand Council of Christian Social Services (NZCCSS) published Outcomes Plus.1 This examined the special contribution made by community and voluntary sector social service providers. What do they offer which is unique– their “added value” in other words? 
Read more here >

New Zealand: Businesses not prepared for aging workforce - study 

Source: NewsHub

Kiwi businesses around the country should be doing more to accommodate older workers, according to a new study.

The latest New Zealand Diversity Survey found more than 70 percent of businesses have no specific strategies to engage with workers older than 55.

Only two percent of the 909 people surveyed said their organisation offered staff older than 55 retirement planning information, and fewer than two percent offered additional training to keep them up to speed.

Read more here >

Study into Loneliness looking for Older Participants

A study to improve understanding of social isolation and loneliness in New Zealand is looking for participants over the age of 65.

Researchers will explore why rates of loneliness in older New Zealanders are higher than many other countries and will look at the potential for visiting services to meet the needs of all older adults.

Read more here >

Anyone who is over 65 years old and is interested in taking part in this study should contact the Research Project Manager, Emma Moselen at or call (09) 923 3246.

Australia: Dementia and Aged Care Services Fund (DACS) Research and Innovation funding

Source: Department of Health Australia

The Australia Department of Health has announced this new funding round. Although we assume that it is only open to Australian agencies, it may interest NZAG members.

Please click here for an alert for distribution about the opening of the Dementia and Aged Care Services Fund (DACS) Research and Innovation funding round.
The funding round is a competitive process and will provide total funding of up to $34 million from 2016-17 to 2018-19 in six priority areas
  • Support for existing and emerging challenges in dementia
  • Better support for services targeting people from diverse backgrounds
  • Developments that support innovation in aged care
  • Support for activities focussing on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
  • Capital support for activities focussing on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
  • Seed funding for adaptive technology projects to enable consumers to stay in their own home.
Information about the round can be found on the Department of Health’s tenders and grants page.

Queries about this funding round should be directed to

Australia: Effect of a general practitioner management plan on health outcomes and hospitalisations in older patients with diabetes

Source: Internal Medicine Journal

Little is known about the impact of a general practitioner management plan (GPMP) on health outcomes of patients with diabetes.

Read more here >

Australia: Aged care: A quick guide

Source: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare

This quick guide provides a brief overview of aged care in Australia. It describes the types of care provided, arrangements for accessing subsidised care, statistics on aged care, the organisations that provide care, and the regulatory arrangements for ensuring quality care. The quick guide does not describe care that is provided outside of the formal aged care system, such as care provided by family members or accommodation in retirement villages

Read more here >

UK: Future of an ageing population

Source: UK Government Office for Science

This report brings together evidence about today’s older population, with future trends and projections, to identify the implications for the UK. This evidence will help government to develop the policies needed to adapt to an ageing population.

Read more here >

UK: Creating Age-Friendly Cities

Source: Parliamentary Office of Science & Technology (UK)

By 2050, 89% of the UK’s population will live in cities and 24% will be aged over 65.1,2,3 There is increasing recognition that cities should aim to meet the needs of older people and support them to live actively and participate fully in their communities. This POSTnote examines how housing, outdoor spaces and transport can be made more age-friendly. It also highlights challenges for designing and delivering agefriendly cities

Read more here >

UK: World Alzheimer Report 2016: Improving healthcare for people living with dementia

Source: Alzheimer's Disease International 

This World Alzheimer Report 2016 reviews the state of healthcare for dementia around the world, and recommends ways that it can be improved. There is a clear and urgent need to improve the coverage of healthcare around the world, for people living with dementia now and those who will be in the future.

Read more here >

UK: Making a Difference in Dementia: Nursing Vision and Strategy

Source: Department of Health (UK)

The Making a Difference in Dementia: Nursing Vision and Strategy, published in March 2013, set out our vision of how nurses could maximise their unique contribution to high quality, compassionate care and support for people with dementia and their carers/families.

Read more here >

US: Patient-centered medical homes and the care of older adults

Source: John A Hartford Foundation

This important new paper provides a roadmap to guide primary care practices in how to enhance care for older, complex patients and their families.

Read more here >

International: Community-based organisations (OPAs)

Source: HelpAge International

Community based organisations of older people are found throughout South East Asia. These are commonly called older people’s associations (OPAs) however may go by other names in different countries, for example intergenerational self-help groups in Vietnam, and older people’s organisations in the Philippines.

Older people’s associations aim to improve the living conditions for older people and for developing their communities. OPAs utilise the unique resources and skills older people have, to provide effective social support, to facilitate activities and deliver services.

They provide a valuable social protection mechanism which complements existing mechanism to improve the lives of older people.

Read more here >

Hope Foundation Summer Research Scholars

The HOPE Foundation and NZAG co-operate to promote quality gerontology research in New Zealand, and the timely dissemination of results to inform further research and evidence-based gerontology practice.

The Scholars for 2016-2017 have been selected and summaries of their projects are available on the Hope Foundation website. The research reports for 2015-2016 students are also available.

Friends of HOPE, and their members, work to raise funds for research scholarships and other Foundation research activities. Why not join as a Friend of the Foundation, and do your bit for supporting gerontology research in New Zealand

Follow the HOPE Foundation on Twitter @hopefoundNZ

Events: Workshops, Webinars and Conferences

New Zealand Conferences

Advance Care Planning National Forum

28-29 November 2016
Ellerslie Event Centre

Advance care planning helps people understand what the future might hold and to say what treatment they would and would not want. It means people, their families/whānau and health care teams can plan for future and end-of-life care.
The forum is for health professionals, consumer advocates and others already involved in and promoting advance care planning, or who would like to learn more.

Find out more here >

2016 Selwyn Foundation Gerontology Nursing Conference

7 December 2016
Alexandra Park, Epsom

A professional development conference for gerontology nurses and those involved in the pastoral and spiritual care of older people

With an exciting line-up of world-class speakers in the fields of gerontology and ageing and spirituality, we have made a slight change to our approach this year, incorporating the practical aspects of care, and the philosophical and spiritual facets of ageing and spirituality. 

Find out more here >

The Getting of Wisdom: Learning in Later Life Exchange & Conference

16 February 2017

The one week Exchange (12–18 Feb 2017), including three one day conferences, is a unique collaboration between Adult Learning Australia (ALA), the peak adult and community education organisation in Australia; Federation University Australia, and ACE Aotearoa, the peak organisation inclusive of New Zealand’s diverse Maori, Pakeha and Pacifika cultures and people.

The New Zealand programme will involve a full day of presentations and workshops on the theme Learning, empowerment and identity in later life. The venue is Te Wharewaka o Poneke on the dynamic Wellington waterfront. There will also be a day trip to the scenic Wairarapa where participants will get an opportunity to view the state of the art Henley Menz Shed and other local attractions.

Find out more here >

Annual Elder Law for the Health Sector Conference

21-22 February 2017
Crowne Plaza, Auckland

The 9th Annual Elder Law for the Health Sector conference will address key legal and ethical challenges to support the best interests and wellbeing of the ageing population. New to this year, the event will examine legislation updates and reviews to inform you of upcoming changes in the industry, including the revision of The New Zealand Disability Strategy and draft update to the Health of Older People Strategy, as well as unpacking common industry issues and navigating difficult topics. 

Find out more here >
International Conferences

IV World Congress on Geriatrics & Gerontology - International Conference on Healthy Ageing in Changing World

23-25 November 2016
Indian Institute of Science, India

The International Congress, which is held every year, is an opportunity for many well-known gerontologists, geriatrics scholars, policy decision-makers, professional activists, related companies, and researchers to get together and share recent discoveries and study results.

Find out more >

15th World Congress on Public Health (WCPH2017)

3-7 April 2017
Melbourne, Australia

As a key WCPH2017 partner, the Public Health Association of New Zealand would like to encourage public health workers and leaders everywhere in the Asia-Pacific region to engage with this World Congress – to submit an abstract and to attend if they can.

The Congress serves as an international forum for the exchange of knowledge and experiences on key public health issues, contributing towards protecting and promoting public health at a national and global level.

Find out more >

AAG and ACS 2017 Regional Conference: Sowing the Seeds - Collaboration for Best Practice

6-7 April 2017
Cessnock Performing Arts Centre
Cessnock, New South Wales, Australia

The AAG and ACS are again joining forces to bring together providers, researchers, educators and policy makers across public health, housing, community and residential aged care to share learnings and opportunities to collaborate for best practice.

Find out more >

Global Disability, Ageing & Healthcare Conferences Online Guide 

See a comprehensive list of conferences on the Global Disability and Health Care Services website.
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Copyright © 2016 New Zealand Association of Gerontology - Te Ropu Matauranga Kaumatuatanga o Aotearoa, All rights reserved.

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