24-hour phone service for the elderly to combat loneliness

  • 24-hour phone service for the elderly to combat loneliness

    The Big Lottery Fund have funded £5m to ‘The Silver Line', a 24-hour helpline for the elderly to communicate with others.

    This helpline can be used by older people throughout the UK.

    The Silver Line is the only free confidential helpline providing information, friendship and advice to older people, open 24 hours a day, every day of the year. It will:

    • Offer information, friendship and advice
    • Link callers to local groups and services
    • Offer regular befriending calls
    • Protect and support those who are suffering abuse and neglect

    The telephone number is 0800 40 70 80 90.

    Chairwomen Esther Rantzen set up The Silver Line as the statistics about older people and loneliness are ‘frightening'. More than half of all 75 year olds in the UK live alone and one in ten suffers "intense" loneliness but is reluctant to ask for help. In a poll conducted to mark the national launch of The Silver Line on 25 November 2013, 9 out of 10  older people told researchers that "a chat on the phone" is the most helpful solution when they feel lonely but 1 in 4 older people say they never or seldom have someone to chat to on the phone.

    You can find out more here http://www.thesilverline.org.uk

    According to BBC news, a Campaign to End Loneliness estimated that more than a million people in the UK feel trapped in their homes and around five million older people consider television their main form of company last year.

    Did you know?

    • According to Age UK, 450,000 older people face Christmas alone this year
    • More than half of people over 75 live alone
    • About 5m people consider TV their main form of company, according to The Campaign to End Loneliness
    • Over three quarters of GPs believe up to 1 in 10 of the patients they saw in a day were really attending surgery because they were lonely, a poll of 1,000 found

    Recently the Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt said it was shameful that as many as 800,000 people in England were "chronically lonely".

    Do these figures surprise you? Tweet us your comments @suppsolutions

    Source and Image: http://www.thesilverline.org.uk/. Source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-25056351

     

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