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Spreading culture of using Bedroom Commode Chair by older adults

Older adults must use commode chair specially at night and darkness to avoid fall

Photo of Shabir Hussain

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Who is your idea designed for and how does it enable older adults to live their best possible life by preventing falls?

This idea is for Older adults to avoid fall .They are facing poor vision,body balance problems and slippery washrooms expose them more likely to fall or tripped . When they fall at the of 60 or above they often receive hips bone fracture or severe injuries on other parts of the body like head etc.Therefore older people are at higher risk of bone fracture because bones get weak in older age. To prevent and reduce falls in older adults,they must use COMMODE CHAIRS at their bedroom

 I am putting this idea forward  based on my practical experience in my country Pakistan. Generally,in our society, families take the responsibility of each and every of their older adult to extend support and care.Extending support and care to the  older adults is the part of  our cultural norms and values and it is also our religious obligation.

In our communities older adults fall mainly due to the reason i mentioned above.Like older adults are good in day time or in full lighting but when they move or walk at night ,mostly they fell down beside their beds.When they reach to washroom or toilet with week and poor balance and low vision on a wet slippery surface of the toilet they fall down and receive sever fractures and injuries.In the age of 60 or above it is very difficult to survive after receiving fractures or injuries which leads to death of a person.

Seventy percent of our population living in rural areas of Pakistan and most of the people are using open areas as toilet.People often either don't have toilets at their homes or they are using at jointly.There are so many socio-economic reasons behind this but here i am sharing idea from my own surrounding and communities.What what i have observed and experienced in my community, mostly people don't even know about the commode chair or it is uses our older people don't feel easy while using it in room as we have joint family system and some cultural barriers.They can buy it for their older people as these are available on the affordable rates in our markets.Since my mother was facing the same situation, therefore i am always working with communities to  creat awareness among the people about its importance and its use.Through this challenge we  would plan to provide this type of chairs to the older adults and spread awareness campaign on how to to prevent falls among older adults.

How to reduce the rate of falls among the older adults.

There might be many ways,methods,exercise and medication for this in developed countries but what i am suggesting in the context of Pakistan, the most easy,affordable thing is develop the culture of using Commode Chair by the older adults at our our homes and conducting sensitization and awareness sessions at households,villages level regarding this among our communities of Khyber Agency FATA.

To minimize the risk of falling while using the commode chair in darkness at night and make it more safe,it should be fasten with older adult's bed.The logic is when an older adult get off the bed and wanna use it  the chair wouldn't shake while putting hand on it

Under this idea there are two types of activities needed to be carried out

1) Provision of Commode Chairs to poor and vulnerable people specially at conflicted affected area of Khyber Agency

2) Sensitization and awareness sessions and advocacy events  at villages and tensile level. 



What early, lightweight experiment might you try out in your own community to find out if the idea will meet your expectations?

This is what happened to my 70 years old mother at 2012.One day she went to use toilet where she fall down but luckily she escaped and survived. Then i went to the market and purchased two simple commode chairs one for my mother and another is for my aunt. Initially my mother was not comfortable while using it but later on she started using the same specially at night times.My mother successfully avoided fall while using the commode chair and died in the year 2014.My aunt is still using it

What skills, input, or guidance from the OpenIDEO community would be most helpful in building out or refining your idea?

Open IDEO community can extend technical guidance, like capacity building trainings to enhance my skills and knowledge regarding challenge design and its implementation. This would enable us to work for the older adults in a more sophisticated and professional way.

How long has your idea existed?

  • 4 months - 1 year

This idea emerged from

  • An Individual

Tell us about your work experience:

I am a development sector practitioner and social worker.I have done Master in Sociology in 2002.Since then i am working with different national and international organization on different thematic areas like health early recovery,Livelihood,Monitoring and community mobilization.

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