Attention urged for elderly neighbours after fall

Attention urged for elderly neighbours after fall

An elderly Whanganui man remains in hospital after spending up to a week injured in his bathroom before he was found.

Neighbours say it was concern from the tight-knit community that saved him.

It was mail piling up in the man's letter box and an unwatered garden that alerted neighbours to the fact that something wasn't right.

The 81-year-old man's cries for help are thought to have gone unheard for up to a week, after he fell in his bathroom and couldn't get up.

Fire crews helped police gain access to the locked house and bathroom. Paramedics described him as cold and dehydrated.

"The elderly gentleman was on the floor and was in quite poor condition so we were able to render first aid before handing him over to the ambulance," says Gary Ward, acting area commander.

Age Concern says it's disturbing to hear of someone falling and not being found for a long time.

"If someone is prone to falling there are things that can be put in place, medical alarms, cell phones, have families make a call in the morning, but elderly people have a right to make their own choices," says Tracey Lynn from Age Concern.

"If you know your neighbours are elderly or living on their own please look out for them, [for] mailboxes overflowing or gardens not being maintained," Mr Ward says.

The man remains in Whanganui Hospital, where his condition is described as comfortable.

3 News