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Elderly people's perspectives on health and well-being in rural communities in England: findings from the evaluation of the National Service Framework for Older People

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

J Manthorpe, S Iliffe, R Clough, M Cornes, L Bright, J Moriarty

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)460 - 468
Number of pages9
JournalHealth and Social Care in the Community
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2008

King's Authors


Addressing the problems of meeting the needs of ageing populations in rural areas is recognised as a political and service delivery challenge. The National Service Framework (NSF) for Older People (NSFOP) set out a series of service standards to raise quality, to redress variations in service use and to enhance the effectiveness of services across health and social care in England and alluded to the challenges of meeting such standards in rural communities. This paper reports findings from the consultations undertaken with 713 elderly people as part of the midpoint review of the NSFOP in 2006, presenting and analysing the views and experiences of elderly people from rural areas. The consultations to engage with elderly people employed a mixed methodology that included public events, focus groups and individual interviews. The data reveal participants' views of how different patterns of social change in diverse country areas in England influence health and well-being in later life. The costs and benefits of centralization of services, and the pivotal issue of transport are important themes. The findings raise questions about the unclear and contradictory usages of the term 'rural' in England and the portrayal of rural ageing as a homogeneous experience.

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