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2014 press releases

New ICAA white papers lay framework for wellness programs and career paths in active aging industry

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[Vancouver, BC] Unlike such other professions as accounting, law and engineering, the active aging industry has suffered from a lack of standardization in defining career titles, career paths and the delivery of wellness and other programs.

Two new white papers from The International Council on Active Aging® (ICAA) take an important step toward solving the problem. The papers — The career paths for wellness professionals and Key elements for developing a wellness program for older adults — outline frameworks to help individuals and organizations serving older adults move towards a common language and understanding of job roles and responsibilities, while also helping to define and/or clarify the functions, descriptions and goals of the wellness programs they offer.

"The active aging industry is still in its formative years," says Colin Milner, ICAA's CEO. "To grow in scope and professionalism we must support those who work directly with the consumer, providing them, and the organizations they work for, with a structured career path, a vision for their future — and at the same time, offering guidance for the development and delivery of wellness programs in many settings."

"More clarity and universality around career paths for wellness and programming requirements will make it easier for those who choose careers in wellness," says Milner, "and easier for organizations that seek, hire and train for these positions."

These new policy documents help organizations develop, staff and deliver effective wellness programs. The key elements of the white papers include:

• Definitions of a wellness model, a wellness culture and a wellness program for older adults.

• A template for developing a culture focused on well-being and including seven elements that underpin an effective wellness platform: priority, people, planning, programs, problem-solving, promotion, performance.

• A career path framework for wellness professionals and organizations that offers improved consistency and clarity on roles and responsibilities, along with education and skills development. The career paths also outline the education and skills required to advance from entry level to middle-management and senior management positions. In addition, they offer recommendations for education and skills development.

Milner says the white papers will also be valuable additions to the educational curriculums of universities, colleges and other educational organizations focusing on the health and well-being of the older adult.

You can download and start using the ICAA white papers now by visiting: http://www.icaa.cc/business/whitepapers.htm

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About the International Council on Active Aging (ICAA)

The International Council on Active Aging® is the professional association that leads, connects and defines the active-aging industry. ICAA supports professionals who develop wellness facilities, programs and services for adults over 50. The association is focused on active aging--an approach to aging that helps older adults live as fully as possible within all dimensions of wellness (i.e., physical, social, environmental, vocational, intellectual, emotional and spiritual)--and provides its members with education, information, resources and tools.

As an active-aging educator and advocate, ICAA has advised numerous organizations and governmental bodies, including the US Administration on Aging, the National Institute on Aging (one of the US National Institutes of Health), the US Department of Health and Human Services, Canada's Special Senate Committee on Aging, the European Commission, and the British Columbia ministries of Health, and Healthy Living and Sport.

For questions:

Contact: Colin Milner, CEO, ICAA
Toll-free: 1-866-335-9777 (North America)
Telephone: 604-734-4466; cell: 604-763-4595

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