Frail elderly do the body works

2017-05-25 06:02
Ikhaya Labantu residents receiving training tips from the visiting medical students .

Ikhaya Labantu residents receiving training tips from the visiting medical students .

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Frail and elderly inmates at Ikhaya and Ikamva Labantu homes in Zone 17 in Langa were left in high spirits following a visit by fourth year UCT medical students last week.

Cordinated by site facilitator, Patricia Ncamile, the visit saw the students doing presentations on chronic ailments affecting the elderly such as Alzheimer’s, Dementia and Bipolar Syndrome.

After the inter-active talks, the students took the elderly through moderate sessions of physical exercises.

Ncamile said this was because numerous studies have shown that physical training for seniors helps to counteract the weakness and frailty that usually comes with ageing.

“The students gave them exercise tips from a medical perspective and we also provided a healthy eating plan for them,” she said.

Fourth year medical student Zama Mthombeni said it was “pleasant exercise” to come out and assist the elderly.

“It’s our duty to help our communities , especially the senior citizens. In our interactions, we also discovered that they value these sessions and I am sure we will keep on coming,” said Mthombeni.

The students also spent time with community health workers equipping them with “survival tips” in their often stressful tasks.

Ikhaya Labantu chairwoman Ma Mbona said as non-profit organisation that provides shelter to the elderly, they appreciated interventions of this nature.

“We have a long history with UCT through Shawco and today they provided exactly what we needed. Our patients will start exercising and our staff has been shown how to keep our food healthy,” said Ma.

Ikamva Labantu’s Raymond Bokako, agreed that the information shared by students will go a long way in helping both centres.

“Its a vital piece of information which we will share with the residents here and we appreciate their involvement,” Bokako said.


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