The Elderly and their Families – 50% of people contact elderly relatives just once a week

9th December 2013

Senior Response, the call centre for the elderly, has today released results of its new survey looking at how 40 to 60 year olds care for their closest elderly relatives and their perceptions regarding loneliness and isolation in the ageing society. The bespoke research, which surveyed adults in the ‘sandwich generation’*, revealed that half (50%) of people contact their relative just once a week and a mere 14% contact them on a daily basis. Yet a staggering 63% of people believe that this minimal contact is adequate.

 The research also examined what the ‘sandwich generation’ knew about who visited their elderly relatives apart from them, and found that 28% of people simply do not know how many other people contact their elderly relative on a particular day. In addition, 11% of the respondents admitted that no one else would contact their elderly relative at all, revealing that a high percentage of the ageing society may have no social contact with anyone at all on a daily basis.

 Mike Bingham, managing director of Senior Response comments:

“In our busy lives, it’s very easy to forget the thousands of older people who often go for days without seeing or speaking to anyone. Loneliness and isolation is an enormous issue for people in later life in the UK and our figures certainly highlight this worrying issue. With Christmas coming up we are particularly worried about this lack of contact and concerned that families can go for days, or even weeks, without speaking to their elderly relatives. This is not good enough. Certainly, contact with anyone, be it by phone or in person can make an enormous difference to the older generation.”

 Bingham continues:

“As the UK’s population rapidly ages, the issue of acute loneliness and social isolation is one of the biggest challenges facing our society – and it must be addressed. Many people have family members who should either make the calls themselves or if they do not have time, arrange or even pay someone else to do so. The elderly care industry must look at the facts and further commit to making sure that the needs of the growing number of lonely, elderly individuals are met.”

 Senior Response will be launching its Daily Call service in January, which has been designed to help time-poor families ensure that their elderly relatives are well and safe and have someone to talk to, in effort to tackle the increasing problem of loneliness and isolation of the elderly.