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Report of the Elderly Commission
1997 - 1999

Foreword

Established in July 1997, the Elderly Commission (EC) is tasked with the responsibility to advise the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSARG) on policies and services for the elderly. This report provides a round-up of the work done by EC since its establishment.

Over the past two years, EC has focussed its main tasks on assessing the demand of the elderly for housing and residential care services and mapping out a strategy to meet their long-term needs, as well as reviewing the existing home help service and making recommendations to re-engineer the service to improve service quality and cost efficiency. These tasks were conducted through two ad hoc committees whose work will be covered in the section 'Review of EC's Work' of this report.

To meet the specific care needs of the demented elderly and elderly with depression, and to address the relatively high elderly suicide rate in Hong Kong, a working group was set up to study these problems. The working group made a number of recommendations to heighten the community's understanding of these problems and strengthen the preventive efforts.

In addition, EC has rendered its advice to HKSARG on other issues relating to the policies and services for the elderly, including the MEDISAGE scheme proposed in the consultancy report on Hong Kong's health care system, the provision of carer support, day respite service, elderly health service, social networking service, "Opportunities for the Elderly" project, Senior Citizen Card Scheme, etc.

To publicize the theme of "Towards a Society for All Ages" in the International Year of Older Persons 1999 (IYOP), EC set up a Central Co-ordinating Committee to oversee the launching of five territory-wide events and over seven hundreds district activities. I am very grateful for the enthusiastic response and support from the community to our coordinating efforts.

In the coming year, EC will focus its attention on some elderly issues requiring longer-term planning. Our main direction is to support the Government's policy objectives of providing "a sense of security, a sense of belonging and a feeling of health and worthiness" to the elderly. I have no doubt that our members will, based on their own expertise, continue to provide expert advice to the Government. On behalf of EC, I would like to express our gratitude to the Government departments and non-governmental organizations concerned for their support and assistance.

TAM Yiu-chung
Chairman of the Elderly Commission
2 March 2000

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The Report
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Appendix 1 -
Terms of Reference of EC
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Appendix 2 -
EC Membership
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Appendix 3 -
Executive Summary of "Assessment on the Demand of the Elderly for Housing and Residential Care Services and Strategy to Meet Long-term Needs"
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Appendix 4 -
Executive Summary of Report of the Ad Hoc Committee on Home Care
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Appendix 5 -
Report of the Working Group on Dementia
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Appendix 6 -
Report of the Working Group on Elderly Suicide
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