New research commissioned by Legal & General in conjunction with the Elderly Accommodation Counsel (EAC), reveals the big conversations that families are having about managing and supporting elderly parents and how they are planning the right balance of support and independence so crucial to later life. The big issues include housing, health, in house support and care.
The research which sampled 1050 people revealed some key findings –
- 96% of all respondents have a mother aged 60 years or over, 15% of these are aged 60-70 years with 26% aged between 81 and 85 and 26% aged over 85 years. Taken together 52% of all respondents have parents aged over 81 years.
- Being able to visit elderly parents regularly and within a reasonable travel time are also important, but over 10% live an hour away with a further 28% living between 1-3 hours away.
- 60% support regularly by helping with shopping and hospital appointments and 81% prepare a meal
- 69% are worried about their parents physical decline and 67% are worried about them being lonely and isolated
- The use of assistive technology such as skype, text and email is playing an important role in helping people keep in touch which is especially important for those living further away. 45% of parents have broadband and 42% wear an alert pendant or wristband.
- 27% of families have had to leave work for either part of or a full day to help with an unexpected event
A core theme of the research is wellbeing which is influenced both by the age of parents and how far away they live from the family. Of those surveyed, respondents were also asked to rank a list of factors that, for them, constitute their parents’ wellbeing. The most important was being ‘safe at home’ closely followed by ‘well cared for’ and ‘healthy and active’. There was also a close interconnectedness within the family on what comprises ‘wellbeing’. 85% of respondents regard the wellbeing of their parents as either fundamental or ‘very important’ to their own wellbeing with a further 10% rating this as ‘important’.
You can read more about Elderly Accommodation Counsel and Legal & General's responses to this research by visiting our blog page for this article, where you can also view the full report: http://www.firststopcareadvice.org.uk/new-research-big-family-conversation/