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Feeling in control: comparing older people's experiences in different care settings

  • LISA CALLAGHAN (a1) and ANN-MARIE TOWERS (a1)
Abstract

The promotion of choice and control for older people is a policy priority for social care services in the United Kingdom and is at the heart of recent drives to personalise services. Increasingly, we are seeing a move away from institutionalised care (e.g. in care homes) towards enablement, with more services being delivered in community-based settings. Extra care housing has been promoted as a purpose-built, community-based alternative to residential care for older people. However, whilst accounts of users' experiences in particular service types are plentiful, the use of different instrumentation and measures makes comparison between settings difficult. We combined data from four studies where participants were older people either living in care homes or extra care housing or receiving care at home. All of these studies asked participants to rate their control over daily life, using the Adult Social Care Outcomes Toolkit (ASCOT). This paper presents the results of an ordinal logistic regression analysis indicating that, after controlling for differences in age, ability to perform activities of daily living and self-rated health, setting had a significant effect on older people's sense of control. Residents in care homes and extra care housing report similar levels of control over daily life but consistently report feeling more in control than older people receiving care at home. Implications for policy and practice are discussed.

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Copyright
The online version of this article is published within an Open Access environment subject to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike licence . The written permission of Cambridge University Press must be obtained for commercial re-use.
Corresponding author
Address for correspondence: Ann-Marie Towers, Personal Social Services Research Unit (PSSRU), University of Kent, Canterbury CT2 7NF, UK. E-mail: A.Towers@kent.ac.uk
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Ageing & Society
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