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Research and Policy Updates

Our monthly Research and Policy Updates give you an in-depth digest of the latest research evidence and policy information relating to key themes and sector priorities. You need to be a Partner, member or individual subscriber to access Research and Policy Updates.

Latest Issue:

RPU 115 June 2016


Following the last month’s Research and Policy Update on dementia, this month the RPU continues to look at age-related issues with research on ageing well.

Understanding what ‘ageing well’ means is essential when supporting older people to achieve the best possible outcomes. This can be a challenging area of work, because ageing well encompasses a number of aspects of later life and at a personal level will undoubtedly mean different things to different individuals. However, broadly speaking there are key strands to ageing well that social care practitioners and providers need to keep in mind.

Drawing upon the assets in our local neighbourhoods and considering what it means for older people to participate in communities are explored in this month’s research summaries. Assets are considered not just as the physical spaces in our neighbourhoods, but as the local sense of citizenship and engagement across all generations. Research includes attention to how day centres might support social connectedness and a study of engagement in the arts in later life (an area of participation that is sometimes linked to social capital and of growing interest in ageing studies). What it means to be an age-friendly community is also examined, exploring the language and culture around ageing as well as more inclusive approaches to service design.

Relevant RiPfA resources

Enablement in dementia: Practice Tool (2016)

Building on the RiPfA Key Issue: Enablement in dementia (January 2015), this Practice Tool translates its key messages into practical methods that can be used to support commissioners, services managers and frontline practitioners to deliver dementia services with enablement in mind. The tool challenges people to assess their approach, and think robustly and creatively about what more can be done to put enablement at the heart of commissioning, managing and delivering dementia services.

Risk enablement: Frontline Briefing (2016)

With the cultural shift currently taking place in social care, enabling people is a core skill for frontline workers - influencing how people are consulted, how risk is worked with and how outcomes are achieved. This Frontline Briefing explains how risk enablement relates to the Care Act 2014, identifies examples of good practice and provides useful tools and methods for working effectively with risk.

What is community capacity? Customer Guide (2015)

This accessible Guide provides a jargon-free explanation of ‘community capacity’ for a general audience. It explains the move from a world where many aspects of your community were the council’s responsibility to a world where many things are up to you, your family, friends and neighbours. This guide looks at the possibilities and challenges of this new world.

What are outcomes? Customer Guide (2014)

If a person needs care or support, their outcomes are what they want their care and support to help them achieve. Any care and support they receive should be aimed at helping them achieve their outcomes. This Customer Guide provides a jargon-free introduction to outcomes, explains how they work and sets out what to expect.

Making an outcomes approach work in practice: Key Issue (2014)

How can we support people using social care services to define the outcomes they want for themselves? Which approaches will work for everyone – people using services, staff and commissioners? This Key Issue draws on the ‘Making Safeguarding Personal’ project and other practice and focuses on explaining the approaches that work

Prevention in adult social care: Councillors’ Briefing (2014)

This briefing aims to provide all councillors, as well as Lead Members responsible for adult social care, with an overview of the evidence about prevention. It draws together research, policy and people’s views to help support evidence-informed arguments about the provision of adult social care in your area. 

Preventing Need and Maximising Independence: Literature Review (2013)

This Literature Review has been completed by Research in Practice for Adults. We are a charity that uses evidence from research and people’s experience to help understand adult social care and to improve how it works.

 This RPU is also available to download as a PDF file.Icon: PDF. Download this RPU as a PDF file.

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