Health is a major source of worry and stress among older persons. Common health problems in old age include hypertension, stroke, diabetes, heart diseases, trachoma and blindness that often lead to complications and permanent incapacitation. Poor health reduces the capacity of older persons to generate income and curtails their productivity. Older persons can hardly afford the costs of travelling to the health facilities at the Health centre IIIs or in urban centres where they could access better treatment.
Their health problems are compounded by the lack of money for seeking appropriate medical attention or buying drugs for non-communicable diseases. Decreasing health and increasing levels of disability mean that older people, particularly those over 75, become more and more dependent on others for care. The most vulnerable groups of older people highlighted in the National Policy for Older Persons (2009) include amongst others, those who are physically and mentally incapacitated; chronically sick; or homeless.