INIA’s satellite centre for the Caribbean and Central America in collaboration with NTD Fundación organised a webinar series between Friday 28th May and Thursday 30th June 2021. This Webinar series ran a total of 10 different sessions, and delivered by 10 speakers under the theme of “Ageing in Central America and the Caribbean: Care, COVID, sexuality and other aspects of the life of older adults in the region”. The following is a description of the respective speakers and sessions that formed part of this webinar series.
Session 1. Professor Marvin Formosa Ph.D.
Professor Formosa, presented a gerontological and human rights based approach to the ageing process, and longevity, as well as ageism as a highly widespread form of discrimination. As people get older, ageism affects their life chances and opportunities. During his presentation, other complex ways of discrimination added to ageism were examined to show the dark side of aging and also discussed the possibilities of safeguarding the human rights of older people through popular and public policy mechanisms.
Session 2. Santiago López Zuluaga
During his session, Santiago López described the care of the older adult as a duty historically provided at home, and particularly by women. Due to demographic ageing, families are smaller and care (especially of the older persons) must be distributed among less people. This “crisis of care” needs initiatives contributions from all sectors. He also presented the content and results of “Me Cuido Activo”, a model of community care with an emphasis on active and healthy aging.
Session 3. Professor Denise Eldemire-Shearer Ph.D.
Professor Eldemire-Shearer Ph.D. showed the Jamaican experience facing the Covid 19 pandemic since its first case of mid-March 2020. Also the measures taken by the Jamaican Government to protect the older adults based on the international findings of the impact on older persons including the launch of the mass vaccination programme where older persons continued to be listed as a priority alongside health care workers, and established the controversy around treating older persons as a special group in the light of the international discussion as to the possibility of such being described as ageist vs Governments responsibility to protect its population.
Session 4. Dr. Rosy Pereyra
Dr. Rosy Pereyra, described the realities of the implementation of the Madrid International Plan of Action on Aging, an instrument that was approved with great expectations in 2002 but its implementation and commitments have been left only to the will of the world’s governments and repeatedly broken. She also mentioned the challenges to achieve ratification and implementation the OAS Human Rights of Older Adults Convention as a binding instrument that commits our governments to comply with it.
Session 5. Dr. Luz Mercedes Rivera
Dr. Mercedes presented the social, demographic, economic, morbidity and mortality indicators, as well as the presence of disabilities and the implications of said demographic changes in the Dominican older adult population. The health situation, the prevalence of diseases, especially chronic ones, relevant aspects of mental health, violence, HIV and the use of health services by this population were highlighted. Finally, the situation of Human Resources as important aspects in the development of policies in favor of the old age population.
Session 6. Dr. Douladel Willie-Tyndale Ph.D.
During this session, Dr. Douladel described that one of the most known manifestation of ageism is to think that later life is an asexual period in the life course, and how it can have serious negative implications for achieving healthy ageing goals and optimal sexual health for older adults. Also, how older adults engage in sexual activity and value this form of intimacy in their relationships, and the greater attention to the sexual health needs of older adults in the delivery of health care and in the provision of long-term care services, in particular residential services, should consult their stakeholders and begin to examine policy positions and strategies to optimize sexual health and well-being of their residents.
Session 7. María Consuelo Morillo
María Consuelo Morillo described how the well-being of a dependent adult is directly related to the technical capabilities of the caregiver, also she gave inputs about the correct conduct of an old age person caregiver, and how the caregiver should commit to the understanding of the physical, emotional and mental health of the older adult. She recommended the development of a care plan, based on the needs of the adult and the optimization of the resources available for care, which will significantly improve the performance of the caregiver’s tasks.
Session 8. Manuela Suncar
In this session Mrs. Suncar talked about the public policies implemented by the Dominican Government towards the older persons population through the National Council for the Old Aged Persons (CONAPE). Also, how the COVID-19 pandemic affected the old persons and the measures that have been developed to mitigate the impact of the disease to older adults.
Session 9. Daniela Bolaños Torres
During this session Daniela Bolaños Torres exposed the myths and stereotypes that face older persons about sexuality, because its recognition is limited. The exclusion and inequality against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) old person population. Older LGBT adults face limitations like: violence, care exclusion, discriminatory regulations, among others. She shows that is necessary to expand the approaches related to aging and old age, and recognize older people as subjects of rights, work against discrimination based on gender, also to ratify and implement normative such as the Inter-American Convention for Older Adults rights protection.
For the full programme please click the below link: