Beijing walks elderly gently to smart mode
China Daily

An elderly man reads newspaper at a nursing home in Shulan, Jilin province, on Oct 26, 2017. (Photo: VCG)

Beijing will carry out multiple measures to tackle the growing digital divide for the elderly and make sure they are able to share the benefits of a smart society.

Beijing will implement 52 specific measures to help the elderly in this year, including simplifying online medical services and providing voice-led guidance, according to the Municipal Commission of Development and Reform.

As smart technology brings convenience to society in many sectors, its wide usage has also raised some obstacles for older people, who are less familiar with smart phones and the internet.

The city will introduce a total of 162 measures through 2022. Of those, 73 percent were implemented last year. A further 52 measures will be implemented this year and 37 more in 2022.

The measures are designed to solve problems frequently encountered by the elderly relating to seeking medical treatment, shopping and travel.

This year, the city will start punishing businesses that refuse to take payments in cash, which is still widely used by the elderly. The work plan will make it clear that retail, catering, shopping malls, parks and other basic public services such as water and electricity charges may not decline cash.