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Housing: the foundation of community care?

Health & Social Care in the Community

Author: Bochel, C, Bochel, H, Dilys, P
Year: 1999
Type: Journal Article


Until the late 1980s community care was traditionally the preserve of the health and social care agencies that dominated the planning and provision of care. Since then it has increasingly been recognized that housing should also play a major role in community care. This has been apparent in official guidance and statements, in some of the more innovative forms of community care provision, and in some of the academic literature. Yet the advancement of the housing dimension of community care in the 1980s has arguably become as much of a bland truism as the idea of community care itself has always been. What has remained largely absent from the debate is a considered and critical view of the meaning and potential role of housing in community care, or – more specifically – an agreed vision of the benefits a housing orientation can bring to the quality of community care. This article draws together many strands of the argument. It critically examines the emergence and development of the idea of housing as a ‘key’ component – even the ‘foundation’ – of community care, identifying some of the reasons why the housing dimension has risen from a seriously marginalized position to the central role which it is now often suggested it should occupy. The authors conclude by arguing that, whilst some progress has been made, a fundamental shift in thinking is still required at many levels. They suggest that community care users have consistently claimed that housing is the first essential component of effective community care. What is needed is for other participants in the community care process to endorse and develop an ordinary housing approach to community care, in which housing is genuinely accepted as the vital component and which can be translated into practice. This fuller recognition of the housing contribution must embrace meanings which can be agreed, understood and operationalized by the main participants in community care.

Further Details

Publish Dates November, 1999
Full Title Health & Social Care in the Community
Pages 492 - 501
Volume 7
Issue 6
ISBN/ISSN 0966-0410
Accession Number September, 2011
Notes Print copy discarded
Electronic Resource Number 10.1046/j.1365-2524.1999.00216.x
Keywords Health, Housing

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