The majority of older people wish to remain independent and live in their own homes for as long as possible. Instead maintaining a cruising altitude however, the process of ageing forces many to descend towards dependency and long-term care.
It’s never too late to learn new ways for coping by yourself and to make preparations for independent living in older age. But it is a shame that too often these good intentions are superseded by doubts and avoidance. Continue reading →
A new study, published online in the journal Age and Ageing today, shows that the homebound status of adults over the age of 65 in the aftermath of the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake is still a serious public health concern. Of 2,327 older adults surveyed, approximately 20% were found to be homebound.
A team of researchers led by Naoki Kondo of the University of Tokyo’s School of Public Health studied data from the city of Rikuzentakata, an area that was seriously damaged by the disaster. Of its total population of 23,302 before the events of 2011, 1,773 people died or are still missing. Of 7,730 houses, 3,368 (43.6%) were affected with 3,159 “completely destroyed”. Much of the population had been concentrated in flat coastal areas, and since the community infrastructure was totally shattered, many people who lost their houses insisted on moving to areas in the mountains. Continue reading →
Tom Gentry (@TomoGentry) writes for AgeUK from the perspective of older people who live with frailty. His latest article discusses research findings on how people are supported to maintain independence, and where support may be lacking.
Sarah Wallace, Head of Services at the Charity Crossroads Care CNL, talks about their Homeshare programme and how it is a scheme that helps older people keep their independence and remain in the home they love.
I like to think that as I get older, I will be able to keep my independence. But will increasing care costs mean that I’ll just struggle alone at home? Recently, I met Felicity who has recently struggled with ill health, meaning that she has had to consider alternative ways to maintain her independence. In this search, Felicity came across the new Homeshare programme which we run here at the charity Crossroads Care CNL.
The Homeshare scheme uses a ‘matching’ service which helped Felicity find someone to share her house with because her disabilities make it tough for her to live alone. The Homeshare scheme has changed her life and that of her sharer. Continue reading →
Judith Long is a Project Officer in Research and Development at Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust. Here she introduces a new collaborative project to promote independence in older age.
EASYCare is a collaborative project involving a large network of researchers, service providers, practitioners, volunteers and age advocacy partners throughout the world. Our mission is to extend healthy active life and maximise independence in old age using the EASYCare targeted approach to early identification of needs, and by providing a response according to the priorities of the older person. Continue reading →
The jargon of ‘integrated care’ is much-used in health policy and management circles. But why does ‘integrated care’ matter? And what will it mean for patients?
The Kings Fund have just developed a short animation designed to address these questions. A large team were involved, including Prof David Oliver, President Elect of the British Geriatrics Society. It aims to bring integrated care to life for anyone involved in improving patient care. If those working towards integrated care can share this vision with others in their local health and care system, then there is a real chance they can make integrated care happen.
Integrated care: making it happen
Too often, care is fragmented with services reflecting professional and institutional boundaries when it should be co-ordinated around the needs of patients. Delivering integrated, or joined-up, care for people with complex needs should be a priority for the NHS and core business for everyone working in health and social care.
We’d like to help make integrated care a reality across the country.
Our short animation aims to bring integrated care to life for anyone interested in improving care.
On 22 October, the Kings Fund is hosting a one day event on making health and care services fit for an ageing population. This event is supported by the BGS and several of our members are speaking. I am fortunate to have a foot in both camps as BGS president-elect but also as a Kings Fund Visiting Fellow. We have timed the event to coincide with the planned autumn announcement by Rt Hon Jeremy Hunt MP – Secretary of State for Health – of the Vulnerable Older Peoples Plan. Mr Hunt is due to speak at our event and announce some further details. Continue reading →
Assessing a patient’s fitness to continue driving a motor vehicle following a diagnosis of dementia presents an important personal, professional and community challenge. The revocation of a person’s license is a traumatic event that significantly impacts on their quality of life. This is especially so for patients who are living in regional and rural areas. This animated video addresses some of the complex issues involved in assessing whether a person with dementia is fit to drive. Continue reading →
Mark S. Hawley is Professor of Health Services Research, University of Sheffield.
Stuart G. Parker is Wm Leech Professor of Geriatric Medicine, Newcastle University.
Telecare and telehealth are being championed as important components in the response to the needs of an ageing population. What happens when you ‘open the black box’ and take a look inside? A review of a large scale piece of research suggests the answer might not be as clear cut as we might like. Continue reading →