163.2 ‘This is a good time for ageing' - Images of old age from social workers and private health care providers

Wednesday, August 1, 2012: 2:50 PM
Faculty of Economics, TBA
Oral Presentation
Gerardo ZAMORA , Universidad Pública de Navarra, Spain
Erkuden ALDAZ , Ingema, San Sebastian, Spain
Izaskun CUARTANGO , Ingema, San Sebastian, Spain
Nerea GALDONA , Ingema, San Sebastian, Spain
Enhancing the provision of home-based care is crucial in a time of population ageing and growing diversity in old age. For two projects on the role of ICT in new business models for delivering home-based care, focus groups and short questionnaires were used to collect data from two types of stakeholders: (1) social workers carrying out home-based, face-to-face interviews with elderly people who request public, home-delivered care services; (2) and private providers of home care services. The field work was carried out in 2011 in San Sebastian, Spain.

This paper draws on the images arising from discourses of these social workers on what ageing is, what a dependent, elderly person needs and how care should be provided for them, and on what a non-dependent elderly person is and how they should be taken care of. Likewise, the paper analyses the images of the surveyed private providers on what an old person is, what their work is for and on how they are dealing with population ageing and diversity in old age.

Although grounded on their close contact with daily life situations of older people, the images emerging from the discourses of both groups are aligned with a normative view of ageing, including a gender bias for service delivery according to their images of what people need as care, and a view of how the use of ICT by older people should be like.

Making these images visible has contributed to designing more coherent recommendations for both projects on new business models for new home-care products and services, but has also enhanced the research group’s understanding of how images and perceptions around old age work.