One in four pensioners has no social network to help them: survey

One in four Dutch pensioners say they have no social network to fall back on if they need help, according to research among 11,000 people by pensioner lobby group ANBO.

From January 2015, local authorities will be responsible for providing care services to the elderly and the government wants family, friends and neighbours to play a greater role.

Four out of 10 people polled said they can rely on the help of children or a partner and one in five say they can ask friends or neighbours.

However, one-third had not thought about who would be able to help them if they need assistance and many people are too embarrassed or proud to ask, the research showed.

The results of the survey show the government is too optimistic about its new strategy, ANBO says. The health ministry will begin a publicity campaign about the changes shortly.

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