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Welfare Reform on the Web (April 2008): Care of the elderly - UK

The home-visiting process for older people in in-patient intermediate care services

J. Hibberd

Quality in Ageing, vol. 9, Mar. 2008, p. 13-23

This article describes research into the conduct of home visits by two intermediate care services for older people in Cambridge. The remit of both services was to rehabilitate patients to enable them to return home or to find suitable alternative accommodation elsewhere. Numerous home visits were conducted to assess patients’ functional abilities within their home environment, identify the need for support services and equipment and ascertain whether it was safe for them to return home. This study evaluated the home visiting process to examine current practice and identify the potential for improvements.

Law changed to protect elderly people paying for own care

J. Carvel

The Guardian, March 27 2008, p. 10.

The Human Rights act is being extended to protect up to 300,000 elderly people who have been placed by local authorities in privately run nursing homes. The change in legislation will help to combat abuse against the elderly in nursing homes and NHS hospitals.

(See also Financial Times, March 28 2008, p. 4)

Ministers want power firms to help elderly

P. Wintour and J. Kollewe

The Guardian, March 3rd 2008, p. 9

As part of a commitment to abolish fuel poverty by 2010, the government has been meeting with chief executives of three electricity and fuel supply companies in an effort to persuade them to pass on some of their recent windfall profits to help pensioners on fixed incomes who have difficulties paying escalating utility bills.

(See also The Guardian, March 5th 2008, p. 1; The Guardian, March 27th 2008, p. 10)

Number and nuances: the implications for adult protection co-ordinators and committees of the UK national prevalence study of abuse and neglect of older people

J. Manthorpe and others

Journal of Adult Protection, vol. 10, Feb. 2008, p. 13-23

The findings of the UK prevalence study of abuse and neglect among older people can be used by the adult protection community to consider possible changes to their priorities, activities, services and publicity. This article reports first on the contribution of adult protection coordinators to the design and execution of the research. It then sets out potential uses of the evidence provided by the study by adult protection services in the UK.

Plan for vouchers to help ease fuel poverty

E. Crooks and G. Parker

Financial Times, March 4th 2008, p. 2

The government is proposing a new system of vouchers for cheap electricity and gas for people on low incomes to help combat fuel poverty.

Ready to make her mark

N. Valios

Community Care, Mar. 13th 2008, p. 32-33

Report of an interview with Ruth Marks, the first commissioner for older people in Wales, about her new role. This will include ensuring that older people are involved in decisions that affect them; ensuring that services meet their needs; challenging discrimination; protecting and safeguarding; and supporting older people when things go wrong.

Reducing unplanned hospital admissions and hospital bed days in the over 65 age group: results from a pilot study

P. Keating and others

Journal of Integrated Care, vol.16, Feb. 2008, p. 3-8

In order to reduce expensive emergency hospital admissions among older people, health and social services need to look at new models of integrated preventative care in the community. One such model is the Unique Care approach to management of people with long term conditions in primary care. This paper describes the dramatic results achieved in a 22 week pilot of integrated health and social care using Unique Care principles. The pilot scheme resulted in a reduction of 50% in unplanned hospital admissions and of 98% in excess hospital bed days.

Remodelling to extra care housing: some implications for policy and practice

A. Tinker and others

Quality in Ageing, vol. 9, Mar. 2008, p. 4-12

Extra care housing is seen as a popular option for older people by families, some older people, policymakers and practitioners. Some new build is being provided but another option, for which grants are available, is to remodel existing outmoded buildings. This article presents ten case studies of attempts to remodel sheltered housing and residential care homes to turn them into extra care housing. The results were mixed, with satisfaction reported by many new tenants, anger by some existing ones, challenges at every stage for design and construction teams, and issues over the provision of assistive technology and care. Nearly all the schemes experienced unexpected problems during the course of construction.

The state we’re in

J. Smith

Caring Times, Mar. 2008, p. 4

There is concern about the plight of people who have sufficient resources to pay for their own care, but who are receiving little help from statutory services with the process of working out how their needs can best be met. The author suggests that this gap could be filled by independent agencies providing needs assessments and advice on a commercial basis.

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