‘Age, Home and Community – the Next Phase’ updates the 2011 ‘Age, Home and Community’ strategy with changes since then, including the setting up of health and social care partnerships, the introduction of self-directed support, the Fairer Scotland Action Plan and the devolution of social security powers.
The report sets out new actions, such as greater collaboration with the other UK nations to share best practice in housing, ensuring connections between health, social care and housing are recognised in local housing strategies and developing an ‘older people’s framework’ to tackle barriers to independent living for older people and promote older people’s rights.
It also calls for more use of technology-enabled care and the provision of more housing suitable for older people.
Launching the updated strategy, Housing Minister Kevin Stewart said: “When we published our original joint strategy seven years ago, we set out a vision to make housing and related support work well for older people.
“Alongside COSLA and partners in the health, housing and third sectors, we have reviewed and updated our action plan to better reflect the needs and aspirations of older people – addressing the issues of isolation and loneliness while improving access to suitable housing.
“Having the right advice, the right home and the right support will enable older people to live independently for as long as they choose to do so. Our new joint strategy will support that vision.”
COSLA’s community wellbeing spokesperson, Councillor Elena Whitham, said: “I welcome the publication of Age, Home and Community – the next phase today.
“The mid-point review of the strategy showed there is much to celebrate and case studies showed older people have benefited and improved their ability to live independently as safely at home.
“That said there is still work to be done to make living safely and independently at home a reality for many more aging people across Scotland.