The aim of adaptations is to restore the use of the home so that people can regain or retain their independence and carry on living in the community. The DFG is being used in more creative ways in partnership with health and care colleagues, for example, to improve the lighting for someone with a visual impairment, to redesign a bathroom for someone with dementia or make a home safe and warm for someone returning from hospital after a fall. Having an integrated team gives an opportunity to co-ordinate the response and better tailor it to the person’s needs.
The challenge is to measures outcomes effectively to demonstrate the transformation that can occur in people’s lives when they feel in control of their home environment. Robust research is beginning to show that adaptations improve physical and mental wellbeing and reduce the fear of falling. Better local and national data on outcomes is required to demonstrate the substantial savings in health and care costs that can be generated by improving the home.
- Use of NHS number on all files, data sharing protocols, aligned IT systems and improved local and national reporting.