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Welfare Reform on the Web (June 2009): Care of the elderly - UK

A fair deal for self-funders?

C. Williams

Community Care, Apr. 30th 2009, p. 24-25

All older people are entitled to support, information and advice from their local authority, regardless of how much money they have. However, cash-strapped councils are ignoring the needs of people with sufficient assets to fund their own care and leaving them to fend for themselves. With the number of self-funders rising, campaigners are calling for change.

Developing inclusive health and social care policies for older LGBT citizens

L. Concannon

British Journal of Social Work, vol. 39, 2009, p. 403-417

Legislation introduced by New Labour has sought to bring about equality and establish anti-discriminatory practices in health and social care services. Nevertheless, the invisibility of older lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered (LGBT) citizens within social policy research in the UK means that their specific care needs, and how they differ from the wider population, are not known. Older LGBT citizens have been overlooked in consultations, leading to their needs not being considered when services are planned and commissioned. This article highlights strategies being created through social policy that aim to achieve the inclusion of this group in the planning and delivery of their services, covering individual budgets, the role of the voluntary sector, and the choice agenda.

A hindrance or a help?: the contribution of inspection to the quality of care in homes for older people

S. Furness

British Journal of Social Work, vol. 39, 2009, p. 488-505

There has been no real attempt to explore the effectiveness of inspection as a catalyst for change and improvement in service provision. This article reports on a study carried out in 2004 that asked managers of care homes for older people in England about their views and experiences of inspection and ways to improve the process. The majority of managers in this study concurred with the stated aim of the regulatory body, then the Commission for Social Care Inspection, to protect the interests and well-being of residents. However, none associated inspection with improving services. The expertise of the inspector needs to be better deployed to drive up standards of care and promote service improvement.

Housing and dementia

S. Garwood (editor)

Journal of Care Services Management, vol. 3, 2009, p.208-313

This special issue aims to examine opportunities and issues facing the housing and care sectors in promoting the well-being of the two-thirds of people with dementia and their carers who live in their own homes. It covers the roles of floating support services, telecare, home improvement agencies, partnership working and extra care housing in supporting people with dementia.

Modernising social care services for older people: scoping the United Kingdom evidence base

S. Jacobs and others

Ageing and Society, vol. 29, 2009, p. 497-538

In common with other developed countries at the end of the 20th century, modernising public services was a priority of the Labour government elected in 1997. In 2002, as part of its stated commitment to evidence-based policy-making, the Department of Health commissioned a review of the delivery, impact and commissioning of social care services for four adult user groups before modernisation, with the aim of producing a baseline from which to measure the success or otherwise of the reforms. As part of this, four systematic literature reviews were undertaken to find, assess and synthesise empirical studies of adult social care services. This article provides an overview of the peer-reviewed research literature pertaining to the social care of older people in the UK from the introduction of the community care reforms in the early 1990s to the New Labour reforms at the turn of the 21st century. In particular, it will describe the evidence base that supported the underlying themes of the modernisation process as applied to social care for older people.

Positive thinking on dementia in primary care: Gnosall Memory Clinic

L. Greening and others

Community Practitioner, vol. 82, May 2009, p. 18-23

Primary care in the UK has been criticised for a lack of interest and competence in dementia and identified as a crucial 'weak link' in services. Memory clinics are an acceptable and effective vehicle for bringing in patients for early assessment and investigation, and are recommended in the UK dementia strategy. This article presents a case study of Gnosall Memory Clinic, which was established two years ago in primary care and is facilitated by a health visitor. The clinic has attracted a referral rate three times that reported from hospital-based clinics, and has been able to meet the needs of patients and families with little use of other specialist services.

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