Developing sustainable networks and systems rehabilitation for the elderly in Community Development Walailak Demonstration

Developing sustainable networks and systems rehabilitation for the elderly in Community Development Walailak Demonstration

          In 2021, Thailand is expected to be an aging society completely (Complete-aged society) The elderly are prone to chronic illnesses such as high blood pressure, diabetes, hyperlipidemia, and heart disease, leading to disabilities. In particular, stroke, with data from the Department of Disease Control, states that stroke is the 2nd leading cause of death in the world and the highest cause of death in Thailand. The elderly in Nakhon Si Thammarat province was the 2nd highest number in the south of Thailand. Many bodily functions of the elderly begin to gradually decline and consequent effects to disability such as cerebrovascular disease causing paralysis (hemiplegia).

          In the past year, the Physical Therapy Division, School of Allied Health Sciences together with the Academic Service Center Walailak University and Community Development Walailak Demonstration Health Promoting Hospital visited the area to explore the elderly problems found that there were home-bound elders and bed-bound elders to receive rehabilitation for improving the quality of life. However, the limitation of heath staff especially the physical therapists affected the continued care of the elderly patients. The important outcomes after the project implementation last year consisted of 1) service recipients (home-bound elders and bed-bound elders) who had their physical disabilities corrected and rehabilitated 2) there were 6 leaders who took care of and rehabilitated the elderly in the community who had knowledge and ability to take care of the original target group including taking care of new elderly patients 3) establishing a network of care and rehabilitation networks for the home-bound elders and bed-bound elders and reduce the limitation of heath staffs especially the physical therapists.

        However, the elderly care and rehabilitation network system is the starting point of development to increase capacity for care and recovery including further development towards sustainability with community participation. Therefore, the project continues in the second year. “Developing sustainable networks and systems rehabilitation for the elderly in Community Development Walailak Demonstration” to provide care and rehabilitation for the elderly and have a network with the university. Besides that, this project reduces the gap of long-term care for the elderly in a sustainable way.

         The process of project implementation consists of 1) visiting the area to survey data and to analyze problems in the elderly care system with the team in the area 2) meeting network partners and the elderly care rehabilitation system to summarize the problem, prioritize the problem, and to find new patients that need to be rehabilitated and referred from the Hospital to the community 3) design and develop a concrete rehabilitation care system for the elderly 4) increase the capacity of the old leaders and development of new leaders according to the needs of the community 5) visits to assess problems and provide mobility rehabilitation to bedridden elderly by physical therapists. In addition, organized activities to train caregivers, volunteers, as well as personnel in the community involved in caring for the elderly in bed-ridden and build a network in the community 6) promote prevention activities in chronic disease risk groups for new patient problems.

         The results consisted of: 1) there was an increase in the number of patients requiring rehabilitation due to continued visits to the service area and expanding the area of ​​care services. There were 15 new patients who received rehabilitation services 2) there was a network of rehabilitation care for the elderly in the community. The elderly patients in the community will receive services from the project team and continued care from the rehabilitation leaders in the community. The information is forwarded through an online communication system (Line group) 3) The development of exercise sets that combines local arts and culture in the south and one set of the exercise was used in the leader elderly group. The results of these changes are in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Goals 3 and 17. The Good Health and Well-being (goal 3) focus on promoting the health and well-being of the elderly in the community. The Partnerships for the Goals (goal 17) creates cooperation with networks and key mechanisms in the area to design and develop the health promotion and rehabilitation systems for bed-ridden elderly care.


  1. Assistant Professor Jiraphat Nawarat
  2. Dr. Charupa Lektip School of Allied Health Sciences Walailak University, Thasala, Nakhon Si Thammarat 80160

Research Fundings & Partner agencies

  • WU Social Engagement 2020-2021 / Walailak university
  • Community Development Walailak Demonstration Health Promoting Hospital.
  • Thasala Hospital
  • Thaiburi Subdistrict Administrative Organization, Thasala District, Nakhon Si Thammarat Province.


  • Good Practices Academic service Awards: Movement Therapy and Rehabilitation: Activities for Elderly People”, 2019




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