Also known as senior support services, senior citizen services is a collective term used to apply to all types of consumer, medical, and civic benefits offered to persons deemed to have reached the status of a senior citizen. Services of this type may be offered by retail businesses, non-profit organizations, medical and other professional groups, or by government entities.
Perhaps the most basic of all senior citizen services begins with local businesses. With many nations experiencing a growth in the number of citizens past retirement age, retailers often seek to cultivate customer loyalty with seniors. As a result, restaurants and local auto service centers may choose to extend discounts to senior citizens in exchange for their patronage.
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Another approach the business community uses to extend senior citizen services may be to supply a benefit or courtesy at no additional charge. For example, a local supermarket may offer free home delivery for any senior-age customer living within a limited geographical range of the store. Cleaners may offer free pickup and delivery to anyone over a certain age. Drugstores may also offer free delivery of prescription medication at no additional charge to anyone over a certain age.
Municipalities and other government entities may also offer senior citizen services. These benefits may come in the form of discounted use of public transportation such as city buses or rail systems. It is not unusual for even small towns to offer senior community services in the form of recreational activities at local community centers. Senior center services may include daytime care for seniors who are ambulatory and require minimum supervision. Often, meals are included along with the recreation.
Services for seniors may also include periodic health checks at little or no charge. Local medical groups, a chamber of commerce, or a local non-profit association may offer free blood pressure checks, blood glucose testing, and other medical tests that are routinely used to help maintain good health. In some cases, these same organizations may help arrange discount medical care at a local clinic for seniors who are on limited incomes.
Assisted living facilities are another example of senior citizen services. These facilities differ from retirement villages and other senior-oriented living situations, in that there are staff on hand to assist residents with many of the small details of daily living. The staff will prepare meals in a common dining area, provide planned recreation for seniors in a monitored environment, and even medical personnel to make sure residents are taking their medication regularly and on time.
While the exact nature of senior citizen services will vary from one community to another, the underlying premise of all senior benefits and privileges is the same. The aim is to provide the support needed by people who have in the past, and often still do, add a great deal to the quality of life in the area. The services help to stretch what may be tight budgets, allowing seniors living on a limited income to enjoy at least a portion of what the community has to offer.