Football and elderly care – what do they have in common?

16 September 2016

At Promedica24 we do things differently. To us, care for the elderly and vulnerable is not something that is done on a whim or at the last moment. We don’t come in for a few hours per week and leave you to fend for yourself for the rest of the time. Nor do we sit you in a room with strangers and have no time for one-to-one communication to find out what you would actually like to do. It sounds bad, but it is roughly what occurs with domiciliary care and care home living. What we at Promedica24 do is find the carer who is most suited to your needs and have them live with you and look after you. It’s all about you.

So where are you going to spend your final years, months, weeks or even days? Care for the elderly in this country is at an all-time low and has reached a crisis point in cost-effectiveness, availability and dignity for the client and their family. There are many anecdotal cases of hospitalised elderly not given access to food or water that is sitting on the table next to them, as they are too weak or disoriented to help themselves. Home care has been seen by the Whitehall government as more appropriate solution to the funding crisis, when compared to hospitalisation or care homes. As stated by, an estimated 10 million people over the age of 65 in this country use some form of home care provider, this number has risen to over 11.5 million as of 2016 and will rise to 15.5 million by 2030. However, the 2015 United Kingdom Home Care Association has seen local authority figures for those in home care stagnate or even drop in the past 10 years. This means that more and more elderly are sourcing their care needs from an already broken system and nothing seems to be changing.

Britain does many things well, the Olympics being a case in point. Yet it wasn’t always the case. In 1996, Team GB won 1 gold medal. Something needed to be done. That something was lottery funding. Some still see it as a waste of money, which can be taken as a valid point. They argue that lottery money could be used for social causes. However, it can equally be seen as a means to make the world sit up and see that our nation can punch well above its weight in global events, with or without the EU. It is marketing that will probably result in positive international trade being done on the back of that feel-good medal tally.

On the flip-side, there are many things that this union of nations do not do so well- international football for one. Hence, we still dwell on the glories of an event that occurred years before many of us were born-the 1966 World Cup. As much as it nice to reminisce, it is time to look at the present and into the future and to see that the nature of the game has changed. Picking a squad due to celebrity of the names involved has proven to be a faulty rationale. Albert Einstein’s definition of insanity, “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results” is what the FA does with the national team- it is also what the Government does with care for the elderly.

It is time that we ask our elected leaders, why it is that we still use a football-style approach to health and social care for the elderly that has not yielded positive results in the past 50 years. We should be using an Olympic Team GB approach to home health care- an innovative combination of domiciliary visits and an alternative approach, live-in home health care- funded differently and more cost-effectively. With NHS spending cuts looming, Promedica24 offers an affordable alternative to bed-blocking, domiciliary care and care homes. The East Riding NHS Trust has been tasked by CQC to find more ways to keep non-critical elderly and end-of-life care in the community, rather than in surgical or nursing hospital beds. Promedica24 ensures this by placing a CQC certified and DBS checked carer, 24 hours a day in the client’s home. We believe this is a more dignified, cost-effective and safe way to look after the more vulnerable in society.

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