Fragmentation across local health and care systems

The Care Quality Commission has published Local system reviews: Interim report. This review examined health and social care systems in twenty local areas to find out how services are working together to care for people aged 65 and older. The report highlights that in too many instances older people find the experience of moving between health and social care services confusing. Too often, care is fragmented, choice is limited and people are uncertain about who is coordinating their care needs.

Advertisements

Enhanced health in care homes

Enhanced health in care homes: learning from experiences so far | The King’s Fund

This report draws on published literature about joining up and co-ordinating care homes and health services. It also draws on interviews with a range of providers, local authorities and CCGs. It aims to help care homes and NHS providers (including GPs), local authorities and CCGs who are thinking through how to join up and co-ordinate services locally and how to manage the complexities involved.

The report makes recommendations for extending enhanced health in care homes to all areas, supporting and developing leaders, and ensuring that people living in care homes can access high-quality health care.

Full report: Enhanced health in care homes: learning from experiences so far

Productive healthy ageing

This resource for health professionals and local authorities makes the case for action in midlife to support healthy productive later life | Public Health England

Longer, healthier lives are a benefit to society in many ways, including financial, social and cultural, because older people have skills, knowledge and experience that benefit the wider population. There is an opportunity to utilise this increased longevity as a resource, whilst challenging ageism and the view that retirement is about ‘sitting more and moving less’.

As life expectancy rises, we must promote the concept of productive healthy ageing, which involves:

  • improved health and wellbeing
  • increased independence and resilience to adversity
  • the ability to be financially secure through work and build resources
  • engagement in social activities
  • being socially connected with enhanced friendships and support
  • enjoying life in good health

Longer, healthier lives can be a benefit to society, but this requires over-65s to be more active community and economic participants.

Full detail at Public Health England

productive healthy ageing
Image Source: http://www.gov.uk

Older people living with frailty in hospital

Comprehensive care: research on older patients living with frailty in hospital | The National Institute for Health Research

Comprehensive Care looks at the concept of ‘frailty’ in older people living in hospital. It brings together NIHR research on what can be done to identify and manage the needs of this group of people and avoid potential problems. With the right support, patients can continue to live well at the end of their hospital stay.

frailty
Image source: http://www.dc.nihr.ac.uk

This themed review highlights completed and ongoing studies outlining best practice in secondary care for older people living with frailty.  It covers assessment; identifying and managing symptoms associated with frailty in hospital; discharge planning; and caring environments.

Full report: Comprehensive care: research on older patients living with frailty in hospital

Older people in prison

Public Health England has published Health and social care needs assessments of the older prison population: a guidance document. This document provides evidence-based guidance on how to carry out a health and social care needs assessment of older people in prisons. It is aimed at commissioners of prison healthcare services and social care services to understand the needs of older people in prisons and commission and deliver services that meet their needs.

Preventing malnutrition in later life

State of the Nation: an overview of older people and malnutrition in the UK today | The Malnutrition Task Force. 

This report focuses on the scale and challenges of malnutrition in later life in the UK. Research shows that 1 in 10 people over the age of 65 are malnourished or at risk of malnutrition. This silent and often hidden condition can seriously affect an older person’s health and wellbeing and increase hospital admissions and long-term health problems.

mtf
Image source: http://www.malnutritiontaskforce.org.uk

The report examines the causes and consequences of malnutrition in the UK. It also looks at economic costs and pressures, and whether the NHS and social care services are currently able to support older people at risk and how invested they are in this issue.

It brings together information, statistics and evidence from across the health and social care system to highlight what is happening to older people who are malnourished or at risk of malnutrition in England.

Full report: State of the Nation: an overview of older people and malnutrition in the UK today