Planning for Mental Illness in Old Age

By Sharon Smith
Friday, 26 June, 2015

Australians suffering from mental illness are being urged to plan for their journey into old age by national mental health charity SANE Australia
‘Many people manage their mental illness over a number of years and they’re often pretty resilient; but as they get older, additional challenges impact on their lives,’ says Jack Heath, CEO of SANE Australia.
As health deteriorates people find their ability to deal with day-to-day decision making on things like financial, legal and residential issues can become difficult and often hindered by medical and mental health issues.
“Too often older people, particularly those with a mental illness, feel decisions are taken out of their hands, contributing to a sense of hopelessness and despair,” explains the lead author of a recent report on psychiatry services for older people prepared by the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists.
To help support older Australians and their carers in their preparations, SANE Australia has developed the booklet Ageing Well: A guide to planning ahead for older people who live with mental illness, their family and friends.

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