Good Support for People with Complex Needs (Social Policy Research Unit)

[A version of this item appears in: Dementia: the Latest Evidence Newsletter (RWHT), Volume 3 Issue 2, September 2012].


This Social Policy Research Unit (SPRU) document summarises findings from a study into the evidence on good practice in social care for disabled and older people with severe and complex needs. It identifies examples of good practice and offers recommendations for the evaluation of such care.

The authors base their findings on a review of the research evidence, and surveyed this group of people, their carers and the specialist organisations in the field about what these people want from their social care, what works best and what they consider to be good support.

This review found a shortage of evidence about the outcomes and costs of models of social care for people with complex needs. None of the services had been evaluated formally. There is an urgent need for rigorous evaluation of the various models of support for this group of people.

Full Text Link


Gridley, K. Brooks, J. [and] Glendinning, C. (2012). Good support for people with complex needs: what does it look like and where is the evidence? London: NIHR School for Social Care Research / York: Social Policy Research Unit (SPRU), August 2012. (Research findings). 4p.

The SPRU at York provides an online Cases page and a Project page.

About Dementia and Elderly Care News

Dementia and Elderly Care News. Wolverhampton Medical Institute: WMI. (jh)
This entry was posted in Commissioning, Community Care, For Carers (mostly), For Nurses and Therapists (mostly), For Researchers (mostly), For Social Workers (mostly), Management of Condition, National, NHS, NIHR, Person-Centred Care, Systematic Reviews, UK, Universal Interest and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Good Support for People with Complex Needs (Social Policy Research Unit)

  1. This is an excellent report!
    “In general there is a dearth of evidence about the outcomes and costs of models of social care considered good practice for people with complex needs. The most robust evidence of effectiveness related to four different models of organising services: a multidisciplinary specialist team; intensive case management; specialist social work; and inter-professional training. This fits with the findings of the consultation, where participants argued strongly for on-going contact with a key worker or case manager with specialist knowledge.”
    Such an obvious conclusion for us who are or have cared for someone with complex needs such as dementia. The need for research on best practices and knowledge transfer has been overdue for too long.

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