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Suffolk: Task force of housing and health experts to tackle health issues and support youngsters and older people

PUBLISHED: 11:15 24 July 2014 | UPDATED: 11:15 24 July 2014

The report, entitled A Housing and Health Charter for Suffolk, says a new integrated approach will also reduce hospital admissions, speed up and improve hospital discharge arrangements and support care at home and in the community.

The report, entitled A Housing and Health Charter for Suffolk, says a new integrated approach will also reduce hospital admissions, speed up and improve hospital discharge arrangements and support care at home and in the community.

Housing and health experts have pledged to improve the quality of Suffolk’s homes amid concerns young families and older people need greater support.

Suffolk’s Health and Wellbeing Board today discusses a new report which sets out the challenges the county faces in increasing the number of suitable new homes, making existing houses fit-for-purpose for older people and a host of other health inequalities.

The report, entitled A Housing and Health Charter for Suffolk, says a new integrated approach will also reduce hospital admissions, speed up and improve hospital discharge arrangements and support care at home and in the community.

It warns the 77% of people aged 65 or above who own their own homes live in accommodation “often not equipped to meet their future needs”.

Joanna Spicer, Suffolk’s health and wellbeing board chair, said: “Like the majority of the UK, we are caught in a difficult situation where a lack of new housing coupled with a current stock which is often unfit for purpose creates a problem for the future. This affects young families who need starter homes to suit their needs, to the most vulnerable in our communities who need greater support as they grow older.

“The underlying issues are clear: part of this disparity is due to poor housing, which can have a significant impact on people’s health.

“So, our priorities are for to develop innovative solutions for older people living alone in big houses for longer, and doing more to attract young adults and families by providing the right housing mix. Ultimately, I believe we can do more collectively to set the standard for better quality homes to keep people well for longer. This charter is a step in the right direction.”

Between 2012 and 2032, the number of people aged 65 and over living in Suffolk could rise to 85,000 – around 29% of the population.

The report adds that by building homes that are “age-friendly and fit for purpose”, older people could delay the need for more intensive care and support at home, and costly housing adaptations, for an additional year.

Stephen Javes, chief executive of Orwell Housing Association, said a new “true partnership” of housing, health and care professionals from the private, public and voluntary sectors will cut red tape and improve policies.

A Suffolk man had admitted defrauding a sports and social club by almost £27,000.

This year’s SPILL Festival of Performance will begin with the world premiere of Clarion Call, a co-commission between Ipswich arts charity the Pacitti Company and 14-18 NOW, which was behind the Tower of London poppies project.

Building the Orwell Bridge was only one of three options considered when an Ipswich by-pass was first seriously considered in the 1970s, the former chief executive of Suffolk County Council has revealed.

A “smash” was heard moments before a car was set alight in a suspected arson attack in Ipswich last night.

Witham MP Priti Patel faced questions over the prospect of a possible Cabinet return this morning in her first broadcast interview since quitting over her secret meetings with senior Israeli figures last year.

The government has still not agreed a deal to end its £50m commitment for the regional fire control “white elephant” in Cambridgeshire – nearly two years after negotiations started.

A police helicopter was involved in a search which continues this morning for a motorist involved in a single-vehicle crash in Suffolk last night.

This is the last week that market traders will operate from Ipswich’s Cornhill for at least a year as work to rebuild the town centre is due to start.

James Blunt and Plan B have joined this year’s Newmarket Nights line-up.

Drivers are being warned they could face delays as roadworks begin at one of Ipswich’s busiest junctions this morning.

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