UK homes will become the “hospital wards of the future” as the population ages and more people opt for domiciliary care services, the CEO of Home Instead Senior Care UK has said.
Speaking to Home Care Insight, Martin Jones said the social care sector must “prepare for the reality” that people are living for longer and will require more support to remain living well and independently at home.
According to the Office of National Statistics, the number of people living in the UK aged 85 and over will double over the next 25 years.
“I think we are going to start to see people wake up to the fact that people’s homes are going to be the hospital wards of the future. It’s a setting that will foster overall health, wellbeing and independence. And, let’s not forget that ‘home’ is where the majority of people want to be,” Jones said.
“Bear in mind that a 9-year-old today has a one-in-two chance of living to at least 105 years old – and this is the reality that we need, as a sector, to prepare for.”
Jones has also predicted that the use of technology will become more prevalent in the home care sector over the next 12 months.
“For me, the key theme for 2020 and indeed the decade ahead will be the intersection of high-tech and high-touch and how we embrace technology as we address the challenges of an ageing world.”
The Home Instead CEO said 2020 will also see more collaboration between business and healthcare for the “greater good” of the ageing population.
“This is already in action through the work of some of our franchise owners, who have been working with the NHS to prevent hospital admissions through falls and the statistics are staggering in terms of savings on ambulance call outs, A&E visits and hospital stays,” he added.
“There really are so many health issues and incidents that can be dealt with in people’s homes – if we put the right training and systems in place.”