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Upgrading Community Resource Stations to Better Serve Senior Citizens

Mayor Ko Wen-je attended that press conference for community resource station upgrade project on May 25.

According to the mayor, there are currently 322 resource stations for seniors in Taipei. The new project “Senior Citizen Activity Station 5.0,” a vision proposed by Social Welfare Commissioner Hsu Li-min, will be conducted at 50 selected stations in 2016.

In the past, the primary function of these stations for the elderly focuses on its role as a place for congregation and chess games for senior citizens. However, the new upgraded station will reach out to the elderly via greeting calls and home visits, as well as a group meal program to provide elders who live alone with an opportunity to enjoy meals in the company of others.

The mayor noted that it is very interesting that Health Commissioner Huang Shier-chieg (his teacher), Social Welfare Commissioner Hsu (his student), and Taipei City Hospital Superintendent Huang Sheng-jean (his former colleague at work) all wanted to bring medical services closer to the communities. Therefore, it is possible to promote services such as home care when promoting community-oriented medical care.

In addition to providing group meals, house visits, and daycare, the city government will also consider expanding services to cover home care for elders with serious challenges for selected stations with adequate and bigger space.

Ko’s expressed his hope that the resource stations for senior citizens can be ever more localized and community-centric. Citing his experience from living in the US, he remarked that he does not like the American concept of moving old people into retirement homes. He believes that elders like to live in their home community and interact with young people, and that is why the City’s senior care will focus on localization, instead of its American counterpart’s institutionalization approach.