23 Jun 2022

CIH Scotland calls for greater recognition of housing’s role in the delivery of health and social care for older people

The Scottish Government has consulted on new health and social care strategy for older people, which aims to address gaps in the provision of health and social care services for older people and deliver a more integrated and person-centred approach. The Strategy will build upon the actions in A Fairer Scotland for Older People and the Action Plan updated in 2021.

Responding to the consultation, CIH Scotland has welcomed proposals for a new strategy. Still, it has expressed disappointment that the consultation only briefly mentions the importance of housing in improving health and social care outcomes for older people.

Susanne Flynn, policy and practice officer at CIH Scotland, said:

“We welcome the Scottish Government’s intention to create a new health and social care strategy for older people which is person-centred and based on greater integration, and its commitment to supporting people to live independently at home, or in a homely setting, for as long as possible.

“Living at home not only allows people to retain their independence and remain part of a familiar community, but it can also prevent the need for more costly interventions such as a stay in hospital or a move to residential care.

“We are disappointed that housing does not feature more prominently throughout proposals for the new Strategy and feel that this presents a missed opportunity to recognise the valuable contribution that good quality housing and services can make in improving health and wellbeing outcomes at every stage of life.

“We are therefore calling on the Scottish Government to ensure that housing’s role is fully reflected in all relevant policies and strategies relating to older people, at both a local and national level, and that housing is recognised as an equal partner to other agencies in the delivery of health and social care for older people.

“The Scottish Government must also work to ensure a greater mix of suitable housing options for older people across all tenures and provide greater investment in the provision of community equipment and adaptations to allow more people to live independently at home for as long as possible.”

You can read the full CIH Scotland response here.