The World Health Organization describes healthcare as a state over all mental, physical and social wellbeing absence of illness or infirmity. The day was first marked on 7th April 1950 by the World Health Organization with a purpose to sensitize people on the importance of health. With the innovation of new technology, the need for manual labor is decreasing every year affecting the health of people; leading to a whole new range of problems like hypertension, diabetes, obesity, heart problems, etc.
The current pandemic which has affected everyone around the world, the need for preventive healthcare has become ever so important. Government all over the world has requested its citizens to follow certain precautionary measures like following basic hygiene, washing hands and sanitizing regularly, staying at home and wearing a mask while moving out and avoiding all social gatherings. It is imperative for every citizen to follow these guidelines and avoid getting sick. Since elders are at higher risk of getting affected, it is essential that we must take care of ourselves and also our seniors by taking precautions.
Preventive care is essential for all individuals and is the first step one can take to remain healthy and also reduce risk factors associated with premature death and chronic illness. It is easier to make decisions and choices which will help you to remain healthy. Diseases that originate due to lifestyle choices like, obesity, hypertension, heart problems, and diabetes, etc. are easier dealt with when you take an informed decision of taking precautionary measures and preventing the illness rather than tackling it once you get it. Therefore it is important that one focuses on preventive healthcare techniques as it keeps you fit and also productive into your senior years.
Fitness and health are the most important factors for preventive healthcare. Yoga was originated from India and traditionally India was a fitness-oriented country, however with industrialization and changing technology, India has become a service dominated country, focusing little on health. To resuscitate the age-old practice and encourage people all over the world, the United Nations General Assembly and Government of India, declared 21st June as International Yoga Day.
Food and nutrition is another aspect of staying healthy and preventing illness. Eating healthy is very essential as it keeps our body agile and fluid and prevents disease. However, the undernourished population in India is higher and has raised concerns, due to which the Government of India initiated the National Health Mission in the year 2012, focusing on National Rural Health Mission and National Urban Health Mission, covering all the rural and urban areas of the country. The purpose of the National Health Mission is to provide cashless healthcare benefits and services from primary to tertiary care.
Due to increasing competition in the market, climatic changes, and economic crisis, the need to survive has led to problems like stress, anxiety, and depression, etc. which have become quite common and is also affecting the physical and mental health of people. Hence it is important to take precautions to avoid diseases which may lead to chronic illness like heart problems, cardiac diseases, hypertension etc.
India has 106 million elders with various psychological, physical and economic problems. While older people can access health café facilities, they need active aging programs to keep them fit and independent. The Health Ministry has opened geriatric clinics and centers in most states; however, these centers do not cater to the needs of the physically and psychologically impaired elders of the country. There is a need for daycare centers, mobile units, and trained staff to cater to the needs of the elders.
HelpAge India serves elders in a holistic manner, empowering them to live active and independent lives. It focuses on the welfare development of the elders and provides elders relief through various age care interventions like Mobile Healthcare Units which provides free healthcare services to disadvantaged elders and helps them earn a living through the formation of Elder-Self-Help Groups. It also provides palliative and geriatric health care facilities, cataract and free helpline for all elders across the nation.
Adopting precautionary care practices will allow people to monitor their health closely and making sure that symptoms don’t go out of control. Awareness and access to information on healthcare will help people to increase their life expectancy and also improve their health.