Chandigarh: The Punjab and Chandigarh Branch of Indian Psychiatric Society (PUNCIPS) is organizing their 25th Annual Conference at Chandigarh on 11th and 12th April, 2015 at Hotel Park Plaza, Sector-17, Chandigarh to celebrate 25 years of the Society’s Conference, the topic of “Ageing Punjab” has been chosen.
Dr. Parmod Kumar, Organizing Chairperson of the conference has informed while addressing the Press Conference today that India is ageing rapidly. In 2006, there were 7.5% of the population above 60 yrs of age and by 2030 there would be 12%. The size of India’s elderly population aged 60 and above is expected to increase from 77 million in 2001 to 179 million in 2031and further to 301 million in 2051. The challenge is to ensure that the elderly are able to have every opportunity to pursue the activities of their choice and be able to contribute to society even after retirement. It is the right of the elderly to be treated with respect and dignity and not be abused or exploited.
The elderly form a rich repository of knowledge and experience. They should not be marginalized, but should be encouraged to lead an active and participatory life even after retirement.
The National Plan for Older Persons (NPOP) adopted by the Government of India in 1999 and the plans adopted by the various states also assert the need to ensure that the elderly lead a life of dignity, care and support.
The elderly age group comprises a particularly vulnerable group as they often have multiple co-existing medical and psychological problems. Cardiovascular diseases, respiratory disorders, hearing and visual impairments, depression, and infections such as tuberculosis are common problems in elderly populations. Depression is under treated in this age group and perhaps particularly so because it is not yet perceived as a priority public health problem in developing countries. Depression in the elderly has been reported to be high- some studies report 21% of the elderly as suffering from depression. Depression decreases an individual’s quality of life and increases dependence on others. People with depression suffer from impairment of all major areas of functioning, tend to be less healthy physically and more prone to illnesses leading to a greater medical burden on society overall. They are more socially withdrawn. Apart from Depression, Dementia is also a significant public health problem with more and more of the elderly living alone as children move to greener pastures for work. In Punjab, this is common even in rural areas where children move abroad or work in other states with decreasing land holdings making survival in villages increasingly unviable for many. Often the elderly do not come for treatment as they lack transport and are often dependent on others to bring them to a Doctor.
Dr. Parmod Kumar, Organizing Chairperson of the conference has informed in the Press Conference that Experts from others parts of country are also participating in this conference an will share their experience with the delegates.
Following important topics will be discussed during the conference:
- Challenges posed by elderly patients in clinical practice by Rajeev Gupta
- Psychosis in elderly by P.Kulhara
- Delirium in elderly by Sandeep Grover
- Sleep Disorders in elderly by S.C.Tewari
- Dementia: Newer Horizons by G. Prasad Rao
- Substance use problems in elderly by Poorav Midha
- Depression in elderly by Rajesh Nagpal
The conference will be inaugurated by the Prof. Yogesh Chawla, Director PGIMER,Chandigarh at 3.00PM on 11.04.2015.
In view of all this, the organizers plan an Awareness Walk on Sunday, the 12th of April from 8:00 AM to 9:30 AM at the Rose Garden.