‘Caring for our future’: COI desk research to help inform the approach

The desk research review was carried out to help guide and focus discussion on the defined priority areas during the Caring for our future engagement period. It is a broad overview of existing, selected market research findings (qualitative and quantitative) on the priority areas, and helps, where possible, to define the gaps in knowledge.

This document was not produced to be used as a stand-alone and complete research document, but instead to provide stimulus and guidance for the leaders from the care and support community who are leading the discussions on the defined priority areas.

The vast majority of data was collected from 2008 onwards. It does not include academic sources but comprises market research findings from the general public and from the care and support sector.

Read the desk research document.

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One Response to ‘Caring for our future’: COI desk research to help inform the approach

  1. neil blackshaw says:

    The breadth of this exercise which is crucial and urgent, is welcome but there are still massive gaps and weaknesses.
    The data on the scale of the issue, with the exception of the Dilnott report, is completely lacking. There is no review of what has been done in the past what has worked and what has not. There is very little discussion of how other more progressive countries deal with this issue.
    It is still in essence an ‘insider’ or provider view’; far more attention needs to be paid to the societal context and how that influences the situation people find themselves in. and the extent to which we are failing to join-up strategies and services even after years of joining up rhetoric.
    The word ‘inequality’ occurs only once in the whole documentation and there is no reference to the social determinants of health. Marmot has shown how acute inequality is in disability-free life expectancy. There is no recognition of the increasing inequality in the UK or of age -specific impact of the recession and expenditure cuts. Poverty must be the driver of peoples inability to provide for themselves and Dilnot will not change this.
    The reports make reference to the importance of housing in facilitating independent living but this crucial topic is not explored in sufficent depth. There is a dearth of innovation in housing models suitable for an ageing population. The scale of extra care is completely inadequate. The standard private sector offer usually means a ghetto of older people isolated from the community, socially and physically. Inadequate reference is made to the desirability of vulnerable people being integrated with the community ; no reference is made to life-time homes and life-time neighbourhoods. Reference to spatial planning is made only in relation to new housing – future proofing- but this is a tiny proportion of the housing stock. Interventions are urgently needed to retrofit adaptability.
    Too little account is taken of the role of the environment in keeping people healthy. Falls are a major cause of entering into care or worse and a major burden on the NHS. Careful design of the internal and external environment can mitigate the issue. Physical activity can be encouraged or discouraged by the local environment but too little thought is given to age-specific needs.
    Quality of care and work force seems to ignore the question of pay entirely and yet it seems that the vast majority of care staff are on or close to the minimum wage. It is absolute nonsense to talk of ‘quality’ as if it is an abstract notion. This is all management speak and quite deplorable. Prsumably the workforce is virtually non-unionised so there is an urgent need to find ways of asking them what they want.

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