Expert geriatrician, Dr. Bill Thomas, presenting at the Ageing Asia Innovation Forum.
2. Too often we segregate the elderly through architecture
Dr. Bill Thomas, Founder of the Eden Alternative, questioned our society’s obsession with segregating people according to their age, skillsets, and abilities, and described how this is our default setting for housing the elderly.
Instead of investing in building more large-scale care facilities, Dr. Thomas stressed that, “People should be able to live where they want, and how they want,” and is advocating for the Aged Care Industry to invest in developing small-scale architecture solutions which enable the elderly to remain living in their communities.
As well as enabling the elderly to live better lives, Dr. Thomas explained how communities benefit from being age diverse, “Show me a generation that has flourished by putting its elders away?”
While Dr. Thomas admitted this concept requires a huge cultural shift, he firmly believes it’s a transition we need to make, “There is ageing and there is how we think about ageing, and this is what we can change.”