Organizations visit Mongolian centenarians
The United Nations General Assembly declared October 1 as the International Day of Older Persons in 1990, and Mongolia has been celebrating the day ever since. To mark the day, officials from the Ulaanbaatar Social Welfare and Service Authority, Monos Group, and the Mongolian Association for Elderly People (MAEP) visited nine elders over 103 years-old in Ulaanbaatar and paid their respects on September 29. There are 27 elders who are over 100 years of age in the city.
The eldest person in Mongolia is S.Butemj, who is 108 years old. When officials visited her, she was under medical treatment at a nursing hospital and said, “Until now, I have received this kind of medical treatment in a hospital only twice in my life. I presume it is due to my good health.” Though she can’t walk now, her mental health was in perfect condition. The reason she is in a hospital is not for deteriorated health, but to receive care after a fall. Her face was badly bruised and her granddaughter brought her to the hospital.
The officials also visited 107 year old Ts.Dashdorj. He is no longer able to see and has lost most of his ability to hear. He had nine siblings but is the only one still alive today.
When officials asked about what the elders needed, they all said they are content with their lives and hope for a good government.
Head of the MAEP, G.Baasan, said, “We visited elders who are physically challenged, single, and with low income in Ulaanbaatar on September 22, and presented gifts, as MAEP works for the well being of elders. Currently, difficult social problems are facing elders. There are only 6,000 elders that receive a pension of more than 550,000 MNT, while the rest take an average of 224,000 MNT, which is an insufficient amount of money for the current market. Therefore, we are working to improve their living conditions and increase their pension. Also, the majority of elders have pension loans. As pension loan interest is high, the elders are obligated to pay on a loan equal to eight months if they take a six month loan. Thus, we also trying hard to reduce pension loan interest and support the health of elders.”
In Ulaanbaatar, a total of 62,146 elders receive welfare services and there are 7,144 elders over 80 years of age. Another 246 are over 95 years old. In total, 1,495 elders with state prizes are residing in the city.
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