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Older and incapacitated: Men need to plan their future now

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THINK AHEAD: Tina Hogarth Clarke says it's vital for older men to understand the importance of planning ahead.

THINK AHEAD: Tina Hogarth Clarke says it's vital for older men to understand the importance of planning ahead.

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Older men are being encouraged to discuss how they want their future to be managed in case they're not in a position to.

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Forward planning for men has come under COTA Victoria's spotlight, with two of its programs - Seniors Rights Victoria and Older Men: New Ideas (OM:NI) - planning a forum for men.

Originally scheduled for early April, organisers now hope Legal Matters for Older Fellas will go ahead during the Victorian Seniors Festival in October.

COTA Victoria chief executive Tina Hogarth-Clarke said that through OM:NI and the estimated 400 members across 24 groups, it emerged that a surprising number had not attended to future planning.

"OM:NI groups identified forward planning as a topic they wanted to speak about," she said.

"If you don't have the capacity to express your desires or make your own decisions because of dementia, stroke or something else, who knows what your wishes are? If they're not clearly known, the decisions are made by other people."

Seniors Rights Victoria education coordinator Gary Ferguson said that through the organisation's helpline, it is known that men make up one in four cases of elder abuse.

"We want to provide a forum with an inviting and relaxed environment so participants are confident about asking questions and discussing options with legal experts present, to better equip them to make informed decisions and protect their future," he said.

Ms Hogarth-Clarke said Seniors Rights Victoria had done a lot of work in raising awareness of advance care plans.

Click here for more information about Advance Care Planning Australia.

For information about OM:NI, click here.

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