Growing old and staying healthy - Thursday 20 September 2007 ‘The way we look after older people is one of the yardsticks by which we judge the kind of society we are’ Edward Stourton, 1999. This is just one of the messages from the ‘growing old and staying healthy’ Membersmeet held on the 20 September 2007. Older person’s consultant nurse Jonathan Webster added: ‘Privacy & dignity is a fundamental, non negotiable human right’, and outlined the areas in which the Trust aims to improve services for older people. A New Ambition for Old Age (Department of Health 2006) identifies that ensuring dignity in care should focus upon: Nutrition & the physical environment Skills, competence & leadership in the workforce Assuring quality Ensuring dignity for those with mental health problems Ensuring dignity at the end of life Equalities and human rights Championing change Across UCLH different work is happening to ensure that dignity is kept central to care. As examples, this includes ensuring that dignity awareness is part of development programmes for staff. Recently Age Concern Islington hosted a focus group in which older people shared their experiences of dignity within the Trust. The Trust has also been awarded some money from a national organisation that is being used to bring nurses and older people together to explore meaning and understanding of dignity in care through using the creative arts, this practice development programme has now started and will finish in March 2008.