According to London reporter Thomas Daigle, British mail carriers are taking part in a pilot project that could help lift the spirits of elderly residents who live alone and the health risks that come with it. Loneliness has been linked to an increased risk of depression, heart disease and stroke.
As Britain’s population ages, an estimated 1.9 million seniors are feeling isolated from society, but the postal service is in a unique position to help. The Royal Mail is one of the only companies that sends employees to virtually every address across the country on a daily basis. British letter carriers have come to be one of the most easily recognizable and trusted brands in the U.K.
Billy Giblin has been a postman in Liverpool for more than 30 years and he jumped at the chance to take part in the trial. Billy told the reporter, “I come away feeling as though I’ve done a good deed in my day”. When he visits one of the seniors taking part in the trial, he asks her a series of predetermined questions. Whether her health condition has changed since last week. How happy she feels, on a scale of one-to-10. Whether she’s been getting out of the house.
Trained experts monitor the answers for red flags. Up to 100 seniors in three areas in England are taking part in the trial until March. After that, it will be up to government to decide whether to provide funding to maintain and expand the project.
Image source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Royal_Mail