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Welfare Reform on the Web (January 2003): Care of the Elderly - UK

AGE-OLD PROBLEMS

T Scharf

Community Care, Oct 31st-Nov 6th 2002, p.34-35

Presents case studies illustrating the coping strategies of older people living in poverty. There is widespread ignorance of benefits available. Calls for the basic state pension to be increased.

AT HOME WITH QUALITY

N Raynes

Community Care, Nov 7th-13th 2002, p.38-39

Summarises findings of research in Manchester on what older people want and expect from home care services. Priorities included help with cleaning, regular care workers, a flexible response to current needs, access to safe and cheap transport, and early information about service changes.

BED "FINES" WILL HIT CARE OF ELDERLY, SAY COUNCILS

D Charter

Times, Nov 27th 2002, p.10

Under the Community Care (Delayed Discharges) Bill, councils will have to pay hospitals £100-£140 a day for every discharged patient who cannot immediately leave hospital due to their failure to find a residential care place, or organise a home care package. Social Services argue that the scheme will divert money from preventive work.

THE CARE CRISIS: ASSESSMENT OF THE CRISIS IN BRITAIN'S CARE OF THE ELDERLY

S Evans and G Clark

London: Conservative Policy Unit, [2002]

In spite of the growing numbers of elderly people, availability of domiciliary and residential care has declined. This has led to an increase in elderly patients who suffer delayed discharge from hospital. At the same time, over-prescriptive and expensive regulation has led to the closure of many residential homes. Citizens are increasingly expected to finance their own long term care themselves. The scale of the problem indicates that radical reform of the care system is required.

CARE PLAN TO KEEP ELDERLY OUT OF HOSPITAL

D Charter

Times, Oct 24th 2002, p.12

The Health Secretary has signed a contract with US company, United Healthcare Group, to run ten pilot schemes to reduce the hospital admission rate of elderly people. The company's Evercare programme gives older people more help in the community and has halved hospital admission rates in the USA.

(See also Guardian, Oct 24th, 2002, p.5)

ELDERLY CARE A 'POSTCODE LOTTERY'

K Scott

The Guardian, November 19th 2002, p.11

Scotland's flagship policy of free personal care for the elderly is in danger of becoming a postcode lottery after it was revealed that Scottish councils say funding shortfalls will lead to waiting lists.

INTEGRATED SERVICES FOR OLDER PEOPLE

Audit Commission

Audit Commission Publications, 2002

Claims that all too often older people receive a disjointed and confused response when they need help or advice. A successful system of care, where services are organised around the older person, requires a shared vision, a comprehensive range of services, and a way of guiding people to ensure they receive the help they need. Leadership and organisational culture are critical to achieving this. Good quality care also requires having the right number of staff with the right skills and experience. Discusses how the NHS, local authorities and the voluntary and independent sectors can work together to achieve these aims.

MY RE-GENERATION

S Finch and M Ware

Public Finance, Nov 8th-14th 2002, p.26-28

Ealing Council is replacing its care homes for older people with three new "resource" centres through an innovative PFI deal. Each centre will offer residential, daycare and healthcare facilities, plus office accommodation for health and social care workers. The contract will run for 25 years, with the contractor providing "serviced" buildings for residents, day centre users and council staff as well as the care services for the 180 residents.

ON THE ROPES

A Moore

Health Service Journal, vol. 112, Oct 31st 2002, p.24-26

£900m extra investment was to be made available by 2003-04 for the development of intermediate care services for elderly patients. This money was not ring-fenced and much never reached the NHS and social services at local level. Some has been used to re-badge pre-existing services. Article outlines various schemes which have received investment.

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