Digitized society and the elderly

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For 20 years, there have been discussions and a multitude of different projects and programs (many of which have never been implemented) on the need to use Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) in the daily lives of the elderly population, as well as other vulnerable groups. Extremely rapid development of technologies and services that dictated by capital has intervened in all pores of our lives, which we are suddenly faced with the fact that mastering e-skills has a huge impact on quality of our lives. But today we are no longer talking about the information society, but about digitalisation, which is supposed to change the whole society.

Technological development has greatly changed our way of life. Among other things, it is everything

several things can be done “remotely”, using different electronic devices connected to the Internet. It seems that more and more often this will be the only one how to exercise rights and access services in a digital society. Therefore decision-makers, competent institutions and civil society must pay special attention attention to ensuring equal opportunities for older and vulnerable groups in

integration into the digital world. Last year’s festival for the third period of life, for the 20th time in a row, dedicated a special festival, open to the public, professional discussion to the digitization of the elderly, as this is the very important basis for the inclusion of the elderly in all social pores. The annual festival is therefore in itself a well-established good practice of pressing issues of society in the integration of the elderly.

The participants of the round table highlighted the following measures of equal integration of older and vulnerable groups into the digital society:

  1. Integrate the inclusion of older adults and vulnerable groups (systematic planning and implementation of digitization measures) together with support activities such as they are information, counseling, motivation, analysis and evaluation.
  2. Improving cross-sectoral cooperation between public and private providers in the field of acquiring knowledge, skills and competencies, and implementation of permanent (adapted) support programs for the elderly and vulnerable groups for quality of life in the digital society.
  3. Providing accessible internet infrastructure and connectivity (be able to use a smart device)

and appropriate communication on how to use these services.

  1. Establishment of mobile centers for the elderly, which will be placed in public accessible locations e.g. shops, health centers, banks, where can help the elderly through the first steps in using digital services (eg obtaining a digital certificate, downloading applications to a mobile phone,

user help, etc.).

  1. Empowering seniors to be as independent as possible tackling digital transformation such as education of the elderly educators to help older people with digital inclusion and

acquisition of skills / competences (intergenerational assistance);

  1. Systematic provision and protection of the right to disconnect from digital devices and screens even during the digital transformation. That right that is tight related to privacy is the foundation of democracy.

Speakers drew special attention to the user-friendliness and adaptability of digital services and applications to the elderly. For older adults, any digitized service can be a whole new experience that needs to be carefully approached by the provider.

(see the brochure of the Festival for the Third Age 2021)

Source: Festival for the third period of life

Access date: 01.04.2022