A Fairer Scotland for Older People: framework for action

This framework has been developed to challenge the inequalities older people face as they age and to celebrate older people in Scotland.

Summary of actions

Being older in Scotland
We will:
Support the Festival of Ageing to help us start on the path to achieving the aspiration of changing the narrative on ageing, creating a national platform to celebrate our ageing population and promote the huge benefits older people bring to society.
Respond in full to the report of the Advisory Group on Human Rights and will prioritise actions that can be taken to address the human rights and equality impact of Brexit. 

Work with external partners, engaging widely with civil society, including organisations representing older people and with the wider public sector, to establish a National Task Force to take forward the key recommendations, starting in 2019.
Engaging with, and contributing to, communities
We will:
Discuss with the Older People’s Strategic Action Forum the best ways to understand ageism, including listening to the experiences of older people by discussing the key points raised by older people from the work carried out by Forum members to inform the framework and understanding further literature in this area. 

Use the information captured to develop a strategy to combat the negative perceptions of older people and work with others, including the media, to tackle ageism.
Continue to support the LGBT Age project, which provides LGBT people over 50 (including those ‘coming out’ later in life) with support, social groups and activities, raising awareness of the needs of older LGBT people and promoting greater inclusion both within the LGBT community and more widely.
Deliver A Connected Scotland in partnership with the National Implementation Group to help tackle social isolation and loneliness as they affect Scotland’s older people.
Engage with the Older People’s Strategic Action Forum, using data and evidence compiled in the development of the Volunteering Outcomes Framework, to discuss the key drivers and barriers to volunteering for older people and ensure the Forum is engaged in the development of the associated Delivery Plan.
Work alongside the UK Government and others to take forward the Strategy for Our Veterans to help ensure that we respond to the changing needs of Armed Forces veterans over the next decade. The strategy addresses the immediate needs of older veterans, and defines the right conditions for society to empower and support them. 

In taking this work forward, we will engage with a range of veterans and veterans’ organisations, both large and small, and the Scottish Veterans Commissioner to better identify how we can support the Armed Forces community.
Work with health and social care partnerships and other stakeholders on practical actions to ensure malnutrition is identified and managed quickly and effectively, learning from experience in Scotland and further afield.
Consider how agencies might improve partnership-working to further address inequalities in access to opportunities to be physically active, including inequalities relating to age, at the next meeting of the Active Scotland Delivery Group in May 2019.
Re-engage with the Older People’s Strategic Action Forum to help shape new transformative arrangements for local democracy in Scotland, with equalities and human rights at their core.
Work with stakeholders to deliver actions within the Age, Home and Community strategy to ensure we have a housing system that works for older people.

Continue to engage with a wide range of stakeholders who have an interest in housing to ensure we address the housing needs of a growing ageing population.  

Undertake a practical review of existing guidance on housing adaptations to identify barriers and potential areas for development.
Ensure that the voices and experiences of older people are reflected through the forthcoming Culture Strategy for Scotland, which will be published in 2019, and will continue to celebrate the valuable contribution that older people make to cultural life in Scotland.
Support the mainstreaming of rural policy and learn from examples of successful community-led practice that supports good rural outcomes. Those with the right skills needed to support our rural economy and communities should be encouraged to do so.  
Accessing public and other services
We will:
Engage with key partners on Ambition & Opportunity: a strategy for public libraries in Scotland 2015–2020 in recognition of libraries as vital public spaces for older people.
Continue to highlight the damaging impact of financial services reductions in local services to banks and post offices to the UK Government. 

Continue to work with the financial services sector to mitigate the impact of service reform on older people.
Continue to implement the new GP Contract by transferring services so that GPs can focus on the work only they can do. This will allow for longer consultations for patients where they are needed, particularly for complex care of patients with multi-morbidity, including co-morbidity of physical and mental health issues.

Revise and update the Palliative Care Direct Enhanced Service, which resources practices to learn from and improve the palliative care they provide, from April 2019.
Strengthen multidisciplinary teams to deliver an enhanced and sustainable workforce to improve patient outcomes in primary care settings.

Work with partners to ensure that better-quality and more timely data is developed to drive effective local and national workforce planning for primary care.

Increase the number of GPs working in Scotland by at least 800 by 2028 through our recruitment and marketing campaign that will launch this year. 

Continue to invest in training and education of general practice nurses, providing nursing care across the life cycle. This includes supporting the management of long-term conditions and supporting people with complex conditions or who are frail as part of integrated community teams.
Develop an action plan to take forward the Citizens’ Jury recommendations to help promote and support shared decision-making to help ensure people receive healthcare they really value.
Engage directly with the Older People’s Strategic Action Forum to shape the next National Transport Strategy as part of our consultation process.

Publish a national implementation plan (2019–2021) to embed self-directed support in social care nationally and locally, so that older people can make the decisions that matter to them in terms of being supported to maintain their social connections.
Work with the People-led Policy Panel to shape what the national programme to support local reform of adult social care will focus on, and the projects and activities within it.

Formally engage with the Older People’s Strategic Action Forum in 2019 so that the experiences of older people are reflected in and inform our improvement programme for adult support and protection.
Work closely with NHS boards throughout 2019 to improve provision of, and access to, mental health services, including psychological therapy for people over the age of 65.
Coordinate national work on dementia and this framework to ensure that older people with dementia retain a visible and active part in their communities.

Engage with the Older People’s Strategic Action Forum on our ongoing national work on dementia to ensure older people’s representative groups are linked in to the current dementia strategy.
Engage with the Older People’s Strategic Action Forum in 2019 on matters relating to health and social care integration, and the current engagement and consultation practices of local partnerships. 

Produce revised statutory guidance on local community engagement and participation based on existing good practice, which will apply across health and social care bodies. This will ensure engagement is central to achieving the scale of change and reform required via health and social care integration, and is an ongoing process that is not undertaken only when service change is proposed. The guidance will be published by the end of 2019.

Ensure carers and representatives of people using health and social care services are supported by their local partnerships to enable meaningful engagement with their constituencies. This would include, for example, receipt of integration joint board papers with enough time for meaningful engagement and allowing people using services time to respond to issues raised. It would also include paying reasonable expenses for attending meetings.
Work with stakeholders to deliver enhanced community audiology services and testing. 

Use evidence from pilots exploring the delivery of enhanced community audiology services in a general practice setting to inform next steps in provision of audiology services for older people.

Establish a community-based low-vision service, building on the groundwork that has already been conducted, to improve access to low-vision aids and appropriate signposting to other support services.
Work with the Ministerial Action Group on Digital Participation to increase digital inclusion of older people with the growing technology-based services sector. 

Work with groups of older people to understand how digital technology can add value to their lives in a way that is meaningful to them, and link this to our ongoing work on delivering our digital strategy for Scotland.
Respond to the recommendations made in the University of Dundee’s review of the current provision of social care in Scotland’s prisons when developing a model of delivery of integrated health and social care in Scotland’s prisons, taking into consideration the human rights and equality of care of older prisoners, including all of the protected characteristics.
Work with Police Scotland and partner organisations to develop and roll out the adults in care settings pilot protocol to safeguard and prevent people at risk of going missing.
Ensuring financial security
We will:
Work with employers and trade unions to improve workplace practices for the benefit of women, with a particular focus on supporting women who have protected characteristics. This will be taken forward through an expanded Workplace Equality Fund, based on lessons learnt from the previous Fund.

Work with women’s organisations and trade unions to gain a clearer picture of the issues faced by women transitioning through the menopause to identify other areas where action may need to be taken.

Continue to work with partners, including Age Scotland, Business in the Community, the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development and the University of Edinburgh, to promote good practice to employers.
Respond to the Fair Work Convention’s report, Fair Work in Scotland’s Social Care Sector 2019, and the recommendations it makes.
Monitor the quarterly update reports provided by our delivery partner Citizens Advice Scotland to determine the success of the Financial Health Check Service. This will include data on the number of older people accessing the service, the financial gains, client satisfaction and financial confidence, and improved mental health as a result of the check.

Consider how best to engage with older people as part of our ongoing work on the Financial Health Check Service.
Commence delivering Disability Assistance for Older People by the end of 2020.
Start delivering Winter Heating Assistance in winter 2021 to eligible older people in Scotland who are in receipt of another type of payment from Social Security Scotland. Anyone currently receiving Winter Fuel Payments will automatically transfer to the new benefit. We have made a commitment not to means-test the benefit and have no plans to make changes to the benefit.
Continue to work with local authorities, health boards, carer organisations and others to embed the recently established rights for Scotland’s 788,000 unpaid carers under the Carers (Scotland) Act.

Work to increase employer participation in the Carer Positive scheme to extend carer-friendly employment practices so that more carers can balance work and caring.
Continue to engage with the Funeral Poverty and Funeral Expense Assistance Reference Group, which includes representation from the Scottish Older People’s Assembly, the Scottish Pensioners’ Forum and the Scottish Working Group on Funeral Poverty, on Funeral Expense Assistance.


Email: karen.mechan@gov.scot

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