With a rapidly ageing population in the UK the issue of housing and keeping people comfortable and preventing chronic loneliness is becoming increasingly important.
Statistics from the mental health foundation state that “22% of men and 28% of women aged 65 years and over” are affected by depression, 85% of whom never gain help from the NHS. As well as that 44 million people worldwide suffer with dementia, was predicted to double by 2030. These are not the only difficulty elderly people can face, hip fractures and other problems caused by cold, falls on stairs and overcrowding are all big issues that cost the NHS time and money and effect many elderly people.
Solution – Lifetime Homes
One way in which these issues are being addressed is the construction of lifetime homes, homes that can be easily adapted or already contain design features that make them easier to live in comfortably with a disability or in old age.
These solutions can allow people to stay in the areas that they feel at home in, where they have friends, family and a support network. Helping continue to have mixed ages in communities, mitigating against some of the factors that create loneliness and exacerbate depression and dementia.
The cost effectiveness of having easy to adapt homes makes it accessible and sustainable for people to live in these homes. This will also allow many homes that would have been occupied by one elderly person with several spare bedrooms, to be lived in by families.
There is a need to make lifetime homes available to people in need of support and the ability to live freely and on their own terms. This is especially important as Dr Anna Dixon the chief executive of the Centre for Ageing Better says “Our current housing stock is among the oldest in Europe, and only 7% of existing homes meet basic accessibility requirements,” talking to Robert Booth from the Guardian earlier this month.
How We Can Help
At ethical partnership we are passionate about meeting the needs of our entire population through the Lifetime Homes scheme. We can review designs, train builders, and undertake site audits. Contact us today for more information and follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn to keep up-to-date with developments in the planning industry. You can also visit our new YouTube page to easily find all of our videos about planning, the environment and the services we offer.