Call for Suffolk communities to look after elderly in wake of coronavirus
PUBLISHED: 05:30 12 March 2020 | UPDATED: 10:09 12 March 2020
Calls have been made for Suffolk communities to look out for elderly residents as concerns over coronavirus continue.
Older people and those with underlying health concerns have been found to be some of the most susceptible to the virus.
Suffolk has a high percentage of older people amongst its population.
Data from July 2018 showed that around 23% of Suffolk's population, almost 170,000 people were aged over 65.
Over 3%, around 24,000 people, were aged over 85.
As such, much work is being carried out to look after older people in the wake of the virus.
Age UK Suffolk says it is working hard to protect those within its care from the disease but is asking that residents look out for one and other in the wake of the virus.
'We just need to be really cautious and take all the precautions we are told to take,' said Jo Reeder, from the charity.
'We are following things day by day.'
As part of their work Ms Reeder said that the service was looking to ensure that clients were able to access food supplies should wider spread self-isolation become more of an issue.
'With our home help clients we can do that for them if it gets to that point,' said Ms Reeder.
However, she said it was important for communities to look after elderly residents through the uncertainties posed by the coronavirus.
'Keep a look out for neighbours,' said Ms Reeder.
'You can put a note through the door or leave a small food parcel on the door step.'
Ms Reeder said there was a concern that those, particularly in rural areas, could be left feeling further from the community as a result of any self-isolation that might be required because of the virus.
'We already have a problem with isolation, we don't want to make that worse,' said Ms Reeder.
Ms Reeder said the charity was encouraging its clients to keep up to date with news about the virus as much as they could while continuing their own work.
'We are not stopping services,' said Ms Reeder.
'We are very much following the Government and NHS advice and we are keeping a check on that all the time.
'We are very aware that the health and welfare of our clients is paramount.'