Specialist housing integrated with care provision may not survive as a long term model for providing care for older people, a report has warned.
Around a quarter of current “extra care” housing owners or tenants have some level of dementia, the study by analysts Laing and Buisson says.
Without the provision of extra care housing, many fear that they and other residents would be frequently admitted to hospital.
It warns the withdrawal of government funding combined with the poor financial climate means the rate of new developments has become “decidedly sluggish”.
Under the Department of Health’s former extra care fund programme around 6,000 units were built through partnership working between local authorities and housing associations. There are around 35,000 extra care units nationwide.
The fifth and last round of the extra care housing fund provided £80m for schemes in 2008-09 and 2009-10, with half being distributed each year. This was replaced in 2010-11 with a government grant of £20,000 to each council to prepare plans to promote extra care, but without funds to develop new schemes.
However, the report says the grant “did little to encourage the in-depth extra care planning strategies that it was intended to”.
Report author Philip Mickelborough said: “The model appears to have fallen off the government’s agenda.”