NGO survey finds healthcare, psychosocial issues were critical to elderly during second COVID wave



NEW DELHI: Nearly 29 per cent of the elderly population covered in a survey in Delhi-NCR said healthcare issues were the most critical during the second wave of COVID-19 while 24.2 per cent of them found psychosocial conditions more critical, according to an NGO.

NGO Agewell Foundation said it conducted the survey among older persons spread across Delhi-NCR with the objective to assess their current living conditions and the impact of COVID-19 on their lives.

Under the survey, Agewell volunteers interacted with 1,500 elderly people in July.

Healthcare issues were termed the most critical by 28.9 per cent of the elderly, while 24.2 per cent of them said that they found psychosocial conditions more critical, the organisation said, adding 22.7 per cent claimed that social issues were critical for them and 21.7 per cent of the respondents found financial problems more critical during this situation.

Over 42 per cent of the respondents termed sense of loneliness/isolation as the most prominent psychological issue, followed by restlessness (22.6 per cent), according to the survey report.

“Most disturbing impact of increased unemployment/joblessness was increased dependence on others as per 28.7% elderly respondents,” it stated.

Another 15.6 per cent said that due to this they were unable to get proper treatment/regular medicines, while 18.4% said that their grandchildren’s education suffered due to joblessness in the market.

Among the respondents, 12.6 per cent claimed that they had to terminate/postpone their critical medical checkups due to the pandemic, the NGO said.

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