Short Form Report: Supporting Extra Care Tenants to Reintegrate into their Community Post-Covid: An Exploration of Barriers and Facilitators

Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned report

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Abstract

Project Development: This project is an outcome of the collaborative research partnership established in 2022 between Linc Cymru and the USW Health and Housing Centre of Excellence. The project was funded by Linc Cymru via a Knowledge Exchange Skills Scholarship (KESS) Masters by Research project which was completed by Holly Driscoll and supervised by Dr Phil Tyson, Dr Alexis Jones, Dr Klara Price and Dr Dan Bowers. This report provides a precis of the key findings and recommendations and is submitted alongside the long form thesis which contains a significantly higher level of detail of the project.

Background: Anecdotal evidence from Linc staff had suggested that the Covid 19 pandemic had precipitated a decrease in engagement with social activities amongst tenants in Extra Care settings. Social engagement allied with independent and active living are key tenets of the Extra Care model and these are underpinned by Welsh Government aspirations for independence and autonomy amongst older adults. As such, Linc Cymru were keen to understand the barriers to engagement and the potential facilitators which may subsequently increase engagement.

Aims: The aim of this study therefore was to understand how key aspects of life changed during the pandemic and how this continued post-pandemic within Extra Care settings. Key factors for exploration were behaviours, environment, quality of life and general living experiences within these settings.

Method: The project employed a qualitative design and engaged a multi stakeholder approach. Interviews were conducted with six staff (scheme managers and the community engagement team) and ten Extra Care tenants. The two groups of stakeholders were recruited from three existing extra care schemes in South Wales. Data was collected from May 2022 to June 2022, which was an ideal time frame for initial post COVID interviews to occur after the year of lockdowns and months of restrictions. Reflexive Thematic Analysis (RTA; Braun & Clarke, 2022) was used to analyse the participant responses.

Results: Results yielded two staff themes and two tenant themes with each providing several sub-themes.

·       Staff themes:

1.       The Right Environment for Engaging: How to Best Support and Provide Engagement

§  Subthemes: (i) Barriers (ii) Knowing your punters; types and levels to engagement

2.       Working in Extra Care through the Pandemic

§  Subthemes: (i) The sick got sicker, (ii) Staff health and wellbeing, Staff shift in responsibilities.

·       Staff themes:

3.       Experiences of Living in Extra Care

§  Subthemes: (i) What makes a house a home? (ii) Living through a pandemic, & (iii) Social Impact

4.       Engagement and Social Activities

§  Subthemes: (i) Facilitators to engagement, (ii) Barriers to engagement.

Conclusions: There are a range of conclusions and recommendations derived from this project (see section below for detail). Overall, the recommendations fell into four key categories, (1) Staffing Considerations, (2) Forward Planning, (3) Activity Types, & (4) Accessibility and Inclusivity

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - 5 Mar 2024

Keywords

  • Housing
  • Health
  • Extra Care
  • Assisted Living
  • Health and Housing

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