HDB’s Enhancement for Active Seniors (EASE) programme has been very well-received since it was introduced in 2012. EASE helps our seniors install grab bars, provide slip-resistant treatment to toilet floors and ramps in their flats. EASE seeks to prevent falls at home, a major cause of hospital admission. Many seniors have told me that they can now move around at home with peace of mind.
Mdm Hong Xiudan is one example. I read her letter in Zaobao (Jun 25). Her family had gone through a difficult period after her husband suffered a stroke. Despite their challenges, she took the time to thank those who had helped her, including the rehabilitation therapist who helped her family apply to HDB for EASE improvement items. She said HDB swiftly installed the EASE improvement items in her flat, facilitating her husband’s return from the hospital.
It is residents like Mdm Hong who spur us to design better programmes and policies that will make a difference to their lives. Since its launch, HDB has received feedback from hospitals, beneficiaries and their caregivers, on how EASE could be further enhanced.
In response, HDB will make two refinements to EASE. First, we will lower the age criterion to 65 years old (or 60 to 64 years old, for those who require assistance in daily living). This will allow an additional 100,000 households with seniors to benefit from the programme.
Second, HDB will extend the scope of works to cover a second toilet within the flat. So if seniors opt for it, HDB will carry out slip-resistant treatment to the floor tiles and install grab bars for their second toilet.
I believe these enhancements will be welcomed. Meanwhile, I encourage seniors as well as their caregivers or family members to apply for EASE. You can do so here. EASE is really a good scheme, designed to help our seniors age well with ease. Do take advantage of it.
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