Estimating Need In Older People

Estimating Need In Older People: Findings For England. An analysis by Age UK

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This report by Age UK outlines how ill health, poverty, unmet needs for care and support, poor housing, loneliness and social isolation are profound challenges for many older people. It estimates the numbers and percentages of people aged 65 and over in England with these disadvantages, and collates insights from older people’s own voices about the experience of living with them.

Full report at Age UK

Place-Age Place-Making with Older Adults: Towards Age-Friendly Cities and Communities

Heriot- Watt | October 2019| Place-Age Place-Making with Older Adults: Towards Age-Friendly Cities and Communities

New PLACE-AGE guidelines have been directly informed by the experiences of older adults living across three cities: Edinburgh, Glasgow and Manchester. They present key findings for each of the cities that participated in the research, structured according to the main themes identified in each city, as well as neighbourhood-specific findings and recommendations.

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The report is structured around themes, some of which are:

  • Housing, home and place
  • Navigating outdoor spaces
  • Civic engagement and social participation

    The recommendations are wide reaching and cross-cutting addressing housing and home, transport and mobility, respect and feeling valued, intergenerational supports and social participation.

Place-Age Place-Making with Older Adults: Towards Age-Friendly Cities and Communities (opens new window)

WHO: Integrated care for older people

World Health Organization | October 2019 | Integrated care for older people

The WHO Integrated Care for Older People (ICOPE) offers evidence-based tools and guidance for every level of care o understand, design, and implement a person-centred and coordinated model of care. ICOPE helps health systems support Healthy Ageing and maximise older people’s intrinsic capacity and functional ability (Source: WHO).

Integrated Care for Older People  

Related:

What is Healthy Ageing?

Population ageing in the UK

New report argues that the UK’s unprecedented population ageing poses a set of daunting, yet not insurmountable, challenges for policymakers, institutions and healthcare providers to design better solutions fit for an ageing society | International Longevity Centre UK

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The UK’s population is ageing more rapidly than ever before with the share of people aged 65+ projected to reach 1 in 4 within the next two decades. With today’s 65-year-olds expected to live, on average, 20 years beyond state pension age, the UK’s ageing population is placing considerable strain on government pension and social security systems. Moreover, as retirees come to outnumber new entrants to the workforce, labour shortages could lead to economic growth slowdowns. Finally, already over-stretched and underfunded health and social care systems will need to adapt to growing demand as they prepare to cater for an ever-growing share of the population.

This report argues that the UK’s unprecedented population ageing poses a set of daunting, yet not insurmountable, challenges for policymakers, institutions and health care providers to design better solutions fit for an ageing society. It calls for health policy reforms that focus on preventing, rather than curing disease to enable people to stay active and healthy for longer.

Full report: Navigating the uncharted waters: population ageing in the UK | International Longevity Centre – UK

Decent and accessible homes for older people

Inquiry into decent and accessible homes for older people  | The All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Ageing and Older People 

This report aims to understand the detrimental impact of poor housing on older people’s physical, mental and social wellbeing and contains 13 recommendations that look at the impact of poor quality, inaccessible housing on health, issues in supported housing and the private rented sector and the importance of home improvement agencies.

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Recommendations:

  1. Review of the Decent Homes Standard to include accessibility criteria
  2. Energy efficiency as a national infrastructure priority
  3. Integrate housing issues into health and care strategies and health and care issues into housing strategies
  4. Legislate to ensure all new homes are built to lifetime standard
  5. Planning and housing strategies
  6. Restore funding for national and local housing advice services
  7. Investment in Home Improvement Agencies and handyperson schemes
  8. Increase funding of the Disabled Facilities Grant (DFG)
  9. Ensure Housing, Health and Wellbeing Grants work for older people
  10. Adopt a national strategy on supported and specialist housing
  11. Extend housing options available to older people
  12. Improve conditions for private renters
  13. Work to increase adaptations in homes and housing stock in the Private Rented Sector

Full report: Inquiry into decent and accessible homes for older people.

Yoga improves health in later life, reports systematic review

University of Edinburgh | June 2019 | Yoga improves health in later life, study says

Edinburgh researchers synthesised existing evidence on the effects of yoga on physical function and health related quality of life (HRQoL) in older adults not characterised by any specific clinical condition. 

The team of researchers have reviewed 22 randomised controlled trials that had investigated the effects of yoga on physical and mental wellbeing in older adults (those aged over 60). The yoga programmes in the studies varied in length  and duration of sessions ranged from 30 to 90 minutes.

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This review is the first to compare the impact of yoga with active and inactive controls in older adults not characterised by a specific clinical condition. The group that practised yoga were found to have improved balance, flexibility, leg strength, depression, sleep quality, vitality and perceived mental and physical health – than the controls.

The study’s findings provide robust evidence for promoting yoga in physical activity guidelines for older adults as a multimodal activity that improves aspects of fitness like strength, balance and flexibility, as well as mental wellbeing (Source: University of Edinburgh).

Read the Edinburgh news release in full here 

Abstract

Background

Yoga has been recommended as a muscle strengthening and balance activity in national and global physical activity guidelines. However, the evidence base establishing the effectiveness of yoga in improving physical function and health related quality of life (HRQoL) in an older adult population not recruited on the basis of any specific disease or condition, has not been systematically reviewed. The objective of this study was to synthesise existing evidence on the effects of yoga on physical function and HRQoL in older adults not characterised by any specific clinical condition.

Methods

The following databases were systematically searched in September 2017: MEDLINE, PsycInfo, CINAHL Plus, Scopus, Web of Science, Cochrane Library, EMBASE, SPORTDiscus, AMED and ProQuest Dissertations & Theses Global. Study inclusion criteria: Older adult participants with mean age of 60 years and above, not recruited on the basis of any specific disease or condition; yoga intervention compared with inactive controls (example: wait-list control, education booklets) or active controls (example: walking, chair aerobics); physical function and HRQoL outcomes; and randomised/cluster randomised controlled trials published in English. A vote counting analysis and meta-analysis with standardised effect sizes (Hedges’ g) computed using random effects models were conducted.

Results

A total of 27 records from 22 RCTs were included (17 RCTs assessed physical function and 20 assessed HRQoL). The meta-analysis revealed significant effects (5% level of significance) favouring the yoga group for the following physical function outcomes compared with inactive controls: balance (effect size (ES) = 0.7), lower body flexibility (ES = 0.5), lower limb strength (ES = 0.45); compared with active controls: lower limb strength (ES = 0.49), lower body flexibility (ES = 0.28). For HRQoL, significant effects favouring yoga were found compared to inactive controls for: depression (ES = 0.64), perceived mental health (ES = 0.6), perceived physical health (ES = 0.61), sleep quality (ES = 0.65), and vitality (ES = 0.31); compared to active controls: depression (ES = 0.54).

Conclusion

This review is the first to compare the effects of yoga with active and inactive controls in older adults not characterised by a specific clinical condition. Results indicate that yoga interventions improve multiple physical function and HRQoL outcomes in this population compared to both control conditions. This study provides robust evidence for promoting yoga in physical activity guidelines for older adults as a multimodal activity that improves aspects of fitness like strength, balance and flexibility, as well as mental wellbeing.

The full article is available from the International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity

How men experience and combat loneliness and social isolation in later life

Older Men at the Margins: how men experience and combat loneliness and social isolation in later life | Age UK

Older men at the margins was a two-year study to understand how men aged 65 and over from different social backgrounds and circumstances experienced loneliness and social isolation. It also explored the formal and informal ways they sought to stay connected with others and feel less lonely. This guidance sets out the learning from the research and highlights factors to be considered to meet the diverse needs of older men through group programmes and interventions.

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Image source: http://www.ageuk.org.uk

The guidance includes the following sections:

Full detail at age UK

Additional resources: