Initiative for Accessing Community Resources for Functional Ability Preservation and Healthy Aging

Despite a growing elderly population, there is currently little articulated-demand or offerings in Israel by way of community-based services preserving functional ability in old age.
This innovation from the JDC Eshel addresses this, by integrating digital tools and an inter-organizational work process, including:
• A digital system providing personally adapted information on services in geographical area and recommendations for successful aging.
• A multi-disciplinary and multi-organizational approach among service providers, and public awareness of fostering functional preservation behavior.

Innovation Summary

Innovation Overview

Background and need
Ageing stemming from increased life expectancy is challenging most developed nations. The 2015 World Health Organization Report on Aging and Health notes that the most important consideration for older adults is expected to be their ability to function, and not necessarily the presence or absence of disease.
The currently low utilization of community services for the preservation of functional ability accelerates physical, emotional and cognitive deterioration in the functioning of older adults who could have otherwise benefited from particular services and activities that would help preserve functional abilities and promoting healthy aging.

The initiative
As Israel seeks to reduce dependence and institutionalization of older adults, innovative models are required to provide health and well-being in the community, including services for the preservation of functional ability. Accessible responses to preserving and improving functional ability will enable older adults to live autonomously in their homes, thus improving quality of life, promoting successful aging, reducing need for institutionalization and saving public costs.

JDC-Eshel together with Israel’s Health Ministry are developing and operating Activenet, a program for the preservation of functional ability and healthy aging.

Activenet is a program which focuses on providing accessible information and raising awareness of functional preservation services through technology, that provides recommendations on such services in given areas in accordance with the users’ functional abilities and mobilizes agents of change within the community. Cooperation among service providers facilitates utilization of the recommendations, as does promoting awareness and concepts of rehabilitation and multi-disciplinary and holistic ability preservation. The innovation lies in integrating the use of digital tools and organizational work processes. Digital tools enable automation and personalization that benefits older adults and their relatives, professionals and services. The work process enables the effective use of services through a uniform concept and tools.

The initiative includes three elements designed to enhance demand for community services and resources to preserve functioning and a healthy lifestyle:
1. An internet-based information system ( that locates relevant services, including an index of geographically mapped services.
2. A tool providing personal recommendations for preserving abilities and information on relevant services base on multi-disciplinary assessment of functioning ability (
3. An alliance of service providers and stakeholder organizations, which embed professional concepts, processes, and cooperation within

Goals and targets
Increasing demand for existing resources and promoting a healthy lifestyle through access to personally-adapted information and encouragement of older adults to utilize all the services, resources and eligibilities in a given geographic area.

Expected individual-level results:

Short term
• Use of Activenet system
• Changed attitude to prevention, functional preservation and healthy aging
• Behavioral changes in service consumption
Long term
• Increased demand for preservation, improvement and rehab services
• Preservation and improvement of functional ability and prevention of decline
Expected system-level results

Short term
• Development of training to embed the concept, knowledge and tools for preservation of functional ability and healthy aging
• Growth in number of organizations understanding and implementing the concept and knowledge and making use of tools (Activenet) to increase service consumption
• Provision of personally-tailored services
Long term
• Heightened awareness and changed attitudes among all demographics of preserving function ability
• Activenet integration in services
• Efficient and effective service array (reducing overload and providing service continuity)

Measurement and evaluation
The program is accompanied by ongoing assessment that helps design and embed it. Evaluation is based on qualitative assessment that includes study of materials and analysis of documents and data, interviews with partners and participants, observation, focus groups and analysis of quantitative data.

Target population
Independent functioning seniors experiencing slight to medium decline, in pre-frailty or frailty stages; family members; care and treatment professionals.

Continuity and embedding
The program can be implemented by relevant government agencies (health, welfare) as well as local authorities, which will be responsible for the system, for updating services and marketing the initiative. Initial discussions are under way, with some agencies expressing an interest.

Innovation Description

Innovation Development

Innovation Reflections

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Year: 2018
Level of government: National/Federal government


  • Implementation - making the innovation happen
  • Evaluation - understanding whether the innovative initiative has delivered what was needed

Innovation provided by:


  • ActiveNet Initiative for Accessing Community Resources for Functional Ability Preservation and Healthy Aging

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