Design Council launches new scheme to improve lives of older people

User-led health and social care schemes and services will be designed by integrated teams in the South West and the Design Council hopes to roll the idea out nationally.

Happy senior couple sitting on bridge in forest, horizontal

The Design Council has launched a £3.65 million scheme which it hopes will improve the quality of life of older people.

Focusing initially on the counties of Cornwall, Devon, and Somerset, the Transform Ageing scheme is setting out with the intention of developing and delivering new solutions, which support the needs and aspirations of older people.

Scaling effective solutions

Social entrepreneurs and health and social care leaders are being brought together for the project, which the Design Council wants to eventually roll out nationally.

It hopes that by drawing such partners together and bringing about change, the gatekeepers who commission new services and interventions will feel supported and empowered so that they have the confidence to implement new ideas into mainstream supply chains.

The role of the social entrepreneurs in the scheme is to scale effective solutions sustainably.

“Everyone’s experience of ageing will be improved”

Design Council executive creative director Clare Devine says: “Transform Ageing will enable local communities to take charge of their care needs. The programme will actively engage their insight and support to identify health and social care challenges and will generate tangible, creative and lasting solutions to meet their needs in the south-west and beyond.

“Our vision is that by creating services better aligned to real-life needs and issues, everyone’s experience of ageing will be improved.”

User-led and co-designed

Former Minister of State for Care Rt Hon Prof. Paul Burstow is involved in the project, which has been some three years in the making, and says that older people will be part of the co-designed solution.

“By placing people in later life at the heart of the design process, the programme aims to actively engage their insight, increasing their influence and support to deliver solutions that better meet their needs.”

Partners include social entrepreneur group UnLtd, South West Academic Health Science Network and the Centre for Ageing Better.

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