The role of extra care housing in supporting people with dementia: Early findings from the PSSRU evaluation of extra care housing

Robin Darton, Lisa Callaghan (2009)

Journal of Care Services Management 3 3 284-294

Available online: 1 April 2009

The Personal Social Services Research Unit (PSSRU) is undertaking an evaluation of 19 extra care schemes that were allocated funding in the first two rounds of the Extra Care Housing Fund. All but two of the schemes indicated that they were making provision for people suffering from dementia, ranging from five designed to make specific provision to four that would meet the needs of residents who developed dementia after they moved in. This paper draws on information collected from 15 schemes that had opened during 2006–07, and a recent comparable study of residents admitted to care homes providing personal care. Overall, the people who moved into extra care were much less physically and cognitively impaired than those who moved into care homes, even in schemes designed specifically to provide for residents with dementia, and exhibited less change in functioning during the first six months. However, levels of cognitive impairment in schemes were generally consistent with the approach of each scheme to providing care for people with dementia. The findings are consistent with previous reports suggesting that extra care schemes generally prefer residents to move in when they can become familiar with their new accommodation, before the development of more severe cognitive impairment.