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Last Updated: Thursday, 20 April 2006, 05:13 GMT 06:13 UK
Gadgets help independent living
Older Person
Older people are to be offered devices to keep them safe
One in three people in Cumbria will be of retirement age in 20 years' time, new council figures have revealed.

To help older people live independently in their homes, Cumbria County Council is to roll out a telecare service.

The system includes a range of gadgets including sensors placed around the home to detect intruders, falls, smoke and gas leaks.

Councillors are to meet in Penrith's North Lakes Hotel on Thursday at noon to discuss the future of services.

Cumbria County Council's Champion for Older People, Councillor Oliver Pearson, said: "The traditional idea of people retreating to the sidelines of society once they retire is out-of-date.

Active role

"The days when people are given their gold retirement clock and with it the message that they no longer have anything useful to contribute to society are fast disappearing.

"Industry has already woken up to the fact that older people have a vast amount to offer and it is essential for local policy makers to reflect this fact and make sure the decisions they take work well for everyone in Cumbria."

Also on the agenda at the meeting will be what is being done to make sure older people are able to continue playing an active role in society once they retire.

The telecare service also includes monitors for vital signs such as blood pressure.

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