Survey finds older people have better quality of life in retirement villages than care homes
- 25 Aug
A developer of care homes has said three in four care homes for older people should be shut down due to falling short of modern standards and expectations.
Chief executive of Audley Retirement, Nick Sanderson, has said that demand for his form of extra-care housing was so strong he could not build homes fast enough, reports the Guardian.
He said: “I started by developing and operating care homes and saw a lot of people moving in who frankly should not have been there. That’s how we started housing with care. There is a need for care homes. There always will be. But it should be a specialist and, dare I say it, end-of-life provision, particularly around issues like dementia. They are not somewhere where people with low-dependency needs should be. “There are 500,000 care home beds. Personally, [I think] 75% of them should be shut. They do not meet modern standards and they do not meet the expectations of our customers. We can’t build fast enough at this particular time. We can’t find the land to meet our objectives. We could sell everything we build several times over. It’s an idea whose time has come.”
Research by ageing population think tank ILC-UK has found that residents experience only have the levels of loneliness compared to older people living independently elsewhere.
The findings are based on 201 completed surveys, a response rate of 27%, and only 6% of respondents reported experiencing “poor” or “very poor” health.
Martin Green, chief executive of Care England, which represents leading care home operators, said Sanderson was ignoring both the high level of dependency of the typical care home resident in 2015 and the fact that most people could not afford to buy into Audley’s model of housing with care.
“I think he was rather foolish not to acknowledge the reality that in the 21st century there is a chronic need for very high dependency care of people who would not be able to live in one of his care villages,” Green said. “They are not options for anybody but the very rich.”
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