Paul Burstow, the former Care Services Minister, has proposed that surplus NHS land could be used for building dedicated housing for older people. This is just one of a number of suggestions to encourage investment in extra care housing for the elderly and disabled, including relaxation of planning rules and discounted prices.
There is a growing recognition of the need for retirement villages and adapted flats, as alternatives to (and in addition to) traditional care homes. While approximately 450,000 people in England live in residential care homes, the number living in specially adapted extra care apartments and retirement complexes is comparatively small.
Triggle, N. (2014). Build homes for elderly on NHS land, says MP. London: BBC Health News, September 3rd 2014.
This relates to:
The Commission on Residential Care, Chaired by Paul Burstow MP. London: Demos, September 3rd 2014. ISBN 978-1-909037-65-6.
Housing in Later Life (Age UK)
There is a recent analysis from Age UK indicating that unsuitable housing is forces thousands of older people to endure unnecessary delays to their discharge from hospital. Patients who need home adaptations, such as grab rails or ramps at home typically wait an extra 27 days in hospital; this involves around 40,000 unnecessary bed days in hospital, costing roughly £11.2 million per year in delayed discharges. The “Housing in Later Life” report recommends revising housing policy and standards to ensure all new homes are built to the lifetime homes standard, so permitting housing to be adapted more easily as people age.
Oldman, J. (2014). Housing in later. London: Age UK, July – September 2014.