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Welfare Reform on the Web (August 2006): Care of the elderly - UK

Active steps to prevention

G. Wistow

Community Care, June 29th-July 5th 2006, p.32-33

Article presents results from the first year of operation of the Innovation Forum project, Improving Futures for Older People which was set up by the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister and Local Government Association in 2003. Each participating council commissioned a range of preventative services such as intermediate care, community matrons and better co-ordinated hospital discharge schemes in order to reduce the number of unscheduled hospital admissions of people aged 75 or over. Results suggest that this objective is being achieved.

Mind your tongue

B. McPherson

Community Care, June 22nd-28th 2006, p.32-33

There is a need to broaden the equality and diversity debate beyond race, gender and disability to look at issues of age and ageism. A survey of senior and middle managers in social services about the use of the term “the elderly” revealed that a minority found the term ageist or offensive.

Quality in long-term care homes for people with dementia: an assessment of specialist provision

S. Reilly and others

Aging and Society, vol.26, 2006, p.649-668

At the end of the 20th century most older people with dementia in long-term care in the UK lived in mixed or generalist residential homes and specialist provision was patchy and uncoordinated. The UK National Service Framework for Older People recommended the development of specialist facilities for people with dementia. A recent debate has questioned whether segregated, specialist facilities offer the best model of care. The research reported in this paper aimed to identify and describe the nature and quality of specialist and non-specialist long-term care for people with dementia. The survey results showed that homes providing specialist services for elderly people with mental health problems performed better than generalist facilities on only a few measures. Overall specialist and generalist homes offered a similar service.

Staying power

C. Ham

Health Service Journal, vol.116, July 6th 2006, p.26-28

Kaiser Permanente is a US Health Maintenance Organisation whose pioneering approach to healthcare for older people has produced lower hospital admission rates and shorter stays than equivalent care in the NHS. The firm’s approach involves closer integration of primary and secondary care. Pilot sites in the UK have also demonstrated the importance of integration across sectors.

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