Most families wait for health crisis before making care home decision

James Rycroft, managing director at Vida Healthcare

More than half (57%) of UK adults surveyed by a dementia care provider said they waited to move a loved one into a care home until after a health crisis.

Dementia healthcare provider Vida Healthcare surveyed more than 2,000 UK adults with experience of caring for a loved one. Three quarters (75%) of those responding said having the conversation about moving into care was very difficult, and 43% admitted to lying to loved ones during the process.

The study also found a lack of knowledge around different types of care, with 23% of respondents not confident that they know what residential care is. A similar proportion (24%) were not sure what nursing care is, 28% were unsure about dementia care and 31% did not know what social care or respite care involves. A fifth of respondents had negative perceptions of care homes.

Half of UK adults who currently have or have previously had loved ones in care said their family member was resistant to moving into a care home, with factors including missing their own home (47%) and losing independence (36%). However adults with a loved one in care cited positives including supportive staff (22%) and having better care (21%)

James Rycroft, managing director at Vida Healthcare, said: “Our research found that adults are often putting off conversations because of feelings of guilt – more than a third of UK adults that we spoke to admitted to avoiding the conversation of moving a loved one into care as they felt guilty about doing so, a stigma that we’re dedicated to challenging and changing. It’s important to accept that you are human and there is only so much you can do – an individual cannot provide the level of care that a dedicated care home can.”

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