Perth framework for age-friendly community-based primary health care
In an effort to promote the responsiveness of community-based primary health care to the needs of the population at large and in particular to the growing numbers of older persons, a set of General Principles Guiding Age-Friendly Community-based Primary Health Care has been developed. Such General Principles aim at providing guidance and setting standards in the provision of community-based primary health care to ensure that services are age-sensitive, age-responsive and more accessible to users of all ages and, in particular, older persons. Users of health care services, especially older users, must be empowered and enabled to remain active, productive and independent in their own communities for as long as possible. As an overall objective, the General Principles aim to enable older persons to achieve active ageing, defined by WHO as the process of optimizing opportunities for health, participation and security in order to enhance the quality of life as people age.
The General Principles target two major groups: (1) policy makers and professional associations, particularly in the health and social services sectors; and (2) health care providers at community levels, which include health professionals such as general practitioners, nurses, community health workers, as well as clerical health centre staff, family care-givers and social workers.
Beneficiaries of the General Principles will be health care users of all ages, in particular older persons.
It is expected that the General Principles, once put into effect, will result in the promotion of age-friendly attitudes and the provision of age-friendly health care services, especially at the community level. This will be achieved through increased awareness and sensitivity to older persons and their needs, better training for service providers of health care for older persons, as well as better understanding and use of health care services by the users, i.e. older persons and their families.
The General Principles, once tested and implemented, will inform changes in attitude and practices at the community health care level. The implementation of the Principles should be monitored and evaluated regularly at the national and local levels by qualified professionals in collaboration with other stakeholders, to include in particular older persons. The implementation is to be governed by professional and ethical standards.