A report by a committee of the Northern Ireland Assembly examined the structure and availability of supported living options for older people, and their capacity to meet the policy objective of the Transforming Your Care programme in terms of reducing the need for residential home places.
Source: Review of Supported Living for Older People in the Context of Transforming Your Care, Northern Ireland Assembly Committee for Health, Social Services and Public Safety
A think-tank report provided the findings from the Commission on Residential Care, which drew on academics, practitioners, and other experts to consider the future of residential care (including care homes, extra care villages, and supported living) for older people and people with disabilities in England. It said that there was much innovative and excellent practice in the sector, but negative public perceptions were widespread, with care settings often seen as a last resort option. The report made extensive recommendations, including: for a broader definition of 'housing with care' to be adopted within government policy; for changes in the approach to funding; for the redefinition of residential status in care homes (to provide people with tenancies); for consideration of co-operative, mutual, or profit sharing ownership models; for co-location of care settings with other community services; for an expanded role for the Care Quality Commission; and for workforce-related changes, including payment of a living wage and the introduction of a licence to practice for care staff.
Source: The Commission on Residential Care, Demos
A report said that older people were often living in unsuitable and inflexible housing, and that there were delays in making appropriate adaptations and repairs, which sometimes delayed hospital discharges. The report made a range of recommendations, including calling on the government to build all new housing to higher accessibility standards, for an older person's contact with healthcare services to trigger an automatic assessment of their home, and for central and local government to work together to develop a range of more flexible options for housing in later life.
Source: Joe Oldman, Housing in Later Life, Age UK
An article examined the notion of ageing in place by examining older people's dislikes about, rather than satisfaction with, their home and neighbourhood environments. Drawing on data from Wales, it said that despite high levels of residential satisfaction, a significant proportion of older people did wish to move and this was strongly associated with dislikes about their immediate home environment, more than neighbourhood factors. The article suggested that the consideration of moves in later life might be shaped more by a desire to 'attach' to people, than to preserve an attachment to place.
Source: Sarah Hillcoat-Nalletamby and Jim Ogg, 'Moving beyond "ageing in place": older people's dislikes about their home and neighbourhood environments as a motive for wishing to move', Ageing and Society, Volume 34 Issue 10
An article examined users' experiences of care in a range of settings, by combining data from four studies where participants were older people living in care homes or extra care housing, or receiving care at home, to compare people's sense of control over daily life. It said that, after controlling for a range of differences, setting had a significant effect on older people's sense of control. Residents in care homes and extra care housing reported similar levels of control over daily life but consistently reported feeling more in control than older people receiving care at home. The article discussed implications for policy and practice.
Source: Lisa Callaghan and Ann-Marie Towers, 'Feeling in control: comparing older people's experiences in different care settings', Ageing and Society, Volume 34 Issue 8
An article examined how housing providers could facilitate a 'social scene' to help older residents to bond together and, indirectly, generate mutual aid and a collective voice. Drawing on a study of 16 retirement housing schemes, the article said that on-site housing managers had an important role in 'community development', and discussed the obstacles faced by residents in developing collective social activities or participating in scheme management. The report noted the implications of a move away from the model of on-site support towards floating (visiting) support for older people.
Source: Anne Gray, 'Care in the community or care of the community? Some reflections on the role of support services in retirement housing', Housing Care and Support, Volume 17 Number 2
An article examined housing with associated care for older adults, based on a review of United Kingdom and international literature. The article discussed how care and support was provided, the role of the built environment, and the benefits for resident well-being. It said that there were substantial gaps in the research evidence, but the review had found evidence to suggest that housing with care could deliver 'most if not all' of the United Kingdom government's aspirations.
Source: Teresa June Atkinson, Simon Evans, Robin Darton, Ailsa Cameron, Jeremy Porteus, and Randall Smith, 'Creating the asset base ï¿½ a review of literature and policy on housing with care', Housing Care and Support, Volume 17 Number 1
A report evaluated the Foundations Independent Living Trust's Warm Homes Service. The FILT WHS aimed to assist older and vulnerable people at risk from cold weather and prevent cold-related harm and illness. The report said that the scheme received £499,200 of funding from the Department of Health over the winter of 2012-13. It concluded that that the benefits to clients were sizeable when compared with the average cost of intervention (around £200) and the potential benefits and cost savings across health, housing and social care. The report said that the FILT WHS could provide a key delivery component for the Cold Weather Plan nationally and locally.
Source: Nadia Bashir, Anna Cronin de Chavez, Jan Gilbertson, Angela Tod, Elizabeth Sanderson, and Ian Wilson, An Evaluation of the FILT Warm Homes Service, Centre for Regional, Economic and Social Research (Sheffield Hallam University)