Nation’s researchers aim to put wellness into ageing

Rather than be reactive around ageing, Australia needs to be proactive, said AAG CEO Renu Borst.

Rather than be reactive around ageing, Australia needs to be proactive, said chief executive officer of the Australian Association of Gerontology Renu Borst.

Speaking to Australian Ageing Agenda on day one of the national peak’s annual conference, Ms Borst expanded on the theme of the three-day event – The Future of Ageing Well.

“We are looking at the changing face of ageing. We have an increasing ageing population, and we want to ensure every Australian is ageing well in the sense that they’re healthy, they have a good home, they have the technology that they need, they have the family support, the government support,” she said. “It’s a whole list of things that contribute to ageing well.”

Renu Borst

Rather than just rely on the clinical model of care, Ms Borst would like to see Australia adopt a more holistic approach to ageing.

“So it’s how can we, not be reactivate to disease and ageing, but how can we be proactive … so that we are not ending up in hospital care,” she said. “And to be proactive we have to work with wellness and the tools that support wellness.” 

Ms Borst told AAA, it all comes down to where the dollars go. “It’s what the government is funding. We are always funding reactively.”

“After Covid, we are looking at reconnecting.”

More than 550 delegates from across the country have converged on the Adelaide Convention Centre for the AAG’s 55th national conference, which began Wednesday.

During the event, almost 300 speakers – including aged care and allied health professionals, researchers, geriatricians and nurses – will be sharing ideas on how society can improve the experience of ageing. There will also be workshops, presentations, and social events.  

“After Covid, we are looking at reconnecting, being in the same room, having those conversations face to face,” said Ms Borst. “And hopefully generating new ideas, new ways of working, ways of collaborating more.”

Just three months into the role of AAG CEO, this is Ms Borst’s first AAG conference. “So it’s about meeting people to understand why they’re interested in AAG. And where we can support them, where we can help them, where we can collaborate and build partnerships.”

Put simply, Ms Borst is excited about just seeing people interacting with one another. “I feel like we’re fulfilling our purpose of creating a community.”

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Tags: ageing, australian association of gerontology, conference, Renu Borst, wellness,

2 thoughts on “Nation’s researchers aim to put wellness into ageing

  1. And yet I have been trying to introduce a wellness program into lifestyle and retirement villages for 4 years – with very little interest from the big companies.

  2. Pets and Positive Ageing is one advisory group that is focused on one aspect of ageing- enjoying our pets as we become more frail with increasing years. Two Papillons visit aged care facilities 4 mornings a week – they bring love, laughter and joy. Independent living pet owners are guardians of another species that listens, loves and if it’s a dog needs exercise. Wellness is made of pieces of life’s huge jigsaw puzzle – we all have part of the picture to contribute- if pieces of the puzzle are missing the picture, the wholeness of the wellness picture is incomplete. Wellness workers are team players who are on the same side as the aged. On the other side are those who exploit, ignore or expose our aged to harm.

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