Press Releases

Improving the life quality of older people – University of Reading

Release Date : 11 June 2004

elderley couple gardeningAs Britain's population gets older, research into ageing is becoming increasingly important. Many researchers at The University of Reading are committed to this crucial issue and will be highlighting their approaches to improving the quality of life of older people at a special workshop on Thursday 24 June. Topics being presented cover a wide range of issues, including loneliness, influenza, nursing and care, and public health. Much of the research offers new insights into the experience of the older person in Britain today – and challenges some of the myths. 'Research for a New Age: New Dimensions for Ageing' has been organised by AGEnet, the University's unique network of researchers, charity workers, healthcare professionals and members of the public interested in ageing, impairment and disability. "This workshop is a showcase for some of the vital ageing research being conducted at the University," said Professor Peter Lansley, the Director of AGEnet. "Since it was established in 2001, AGEnet has grown and grown, and the researchers come from diverse Schools such as Animal and Microbial Sciences, Food Biosciences, Health and Social Care, and Law. Reading is really becoming a centre of excellence for research into ageing." During the day, six specialists recently appointed to the University will discuss their work. Professor Margot Gosney will talk about influenza, and ask: 'is flu a preventable disease, are we doing all we can to ensure those most at risk are vaccinated and at what cost?' Dr David Oliver will argue that falls and fractures are a major problem for older people and that we need to be assessing why these accidents happen. If we know why a fall occurs, we can tailor intervention techniques – such as exercise programmes, or a review of the home environment – to prevent it happening again. Professor Christina Victor will look at levels of loneliness and social isolation and suggest that older people are in fact more socially engaged than many people assume. Professor Jim Connelly will discuss the "emerging panic" about a perceived dependency of the elderly on the younger population, while Dr Sally Richards will draw on research findings to look at person-centred care from the perspective of older people and look at some of the challenges involved in a person-centred approach to the assessment of social care needs. Finally, Anne Smith will focus on the evolving role of the District Nurse and the public's perceptions of the role. All are welcome to attend the free workshop, but booking is essential. Please contact Verity Smith, the AGEnet co-ordinator, for details. E-mail: Tel: 0118 378 7179. End Notes for editors -Reporters and photographers are welcome to attend all or part of the workshop. For further information, or to confirm attendance, please contact: 1. Verity Smith, AGEnet co-ordinator. E-mail: Tel: 0118 378 7179. 2. Craig Hillsley, University press officer. Tel: 0118 378 7388. E-mail: -For AGEnet information, see -For a map of Whiteknights campus, see Draft Programme for AGEnet workshop Friday, 24 June 2004 John Nike Lecture Theatre, Agriculture Building, Earley Gate, Whiteknights campus, The University of Reading 10.00 Arrival, Registration, Coffee 10.30 Welcome, Professor Peter Lansley, Director, EQUAL Research Network 10.45 Some realities of ageing - Introduction to the Morning Session 10.50 Influenza - Preventable or Inevitable?, Professor Margot Gosney, Royal Berkshire and Battle Health Hospital Trust and Professor of Older People's Medicine, University of Reading 11.10 Falls: avoiding the consequences, Dr David Oliver, Royal Berkshire and Battle Health Hospital Trust and School of Health and Social Care, University of Reading 11.30 Are you Lonesome Tonight?, Professor Christina Victor, Professor of Social Gerontology and Health Services Research, School of Health and Social Care 11.50 Open Discussion 12.25 Coordinator's Comments, Verity Smith, Coordinator, AGEnet 12.35 Lunch 13.35 The context of care - Introduction to the Afternoon 13.40 Inequalities in Health: theories, methods and responses, Professor Jim Connelly, Professor of Public Health, University of Reading, and Berkshire PCT Health Network Lead 14.00 Battling Against the Odds? Older People, Care Practitioners and Person-centred Care, Dr Sally Richards, Lecturer in Social Work, School of Health and Social Care 14.20 District Nursing: The Future?, Anne Smith, Lecturer in Primary Care, School of Health and Social Care 14.40 Open Discussion 15.20 The Future, Professor Gordon Marshall, Vice-Chancellor, The University of Reading 15.30 Tea and Networking


Search Form

Main navigation