Understanding and improving transitions of older people: a user and carer centred approach


Explore older people's experiences of moving across service boundaries, identifying positive and negative experiences, information and advice needs, access to services and needs for ongoing support.

  • Identify how the needs of particular groups of older people may differ from each other, and the different needs of service users.
  • Investigate these issues over time, to illuminate how previous transitions impact on current and future needs.
  • Draw out policy and practice implications for the way in which services prepare and support older people and their carers for transition between services.
  • Support and share the learning from implementation of project findings in four health and social care communities.


The research is being carried out in four case study areas, each of which is focusing on the experiences of a specific older user/carer group.  These are:

  • Solihull: older people who have dementia and their carers
  • Leicester: older people from black and minority ethnic group
  • Manchester: older people who live in an area with a proportionally small older population
  • Gloucestershire: older people who live in rural areas

Using a participatory action research approach, the project will be co-delivered with older people who are recruited and trained to participate in the project as co-researchers.  In each area, the research team is working with between 5-8 co-researchers who themselves have experiences of care transitions.

Following the fieldwork research, the research team will be working with key stakeholders in each case study area on a year-long implementation phase.  Providing organisational development support to the areas involved, the goal of this phase is to embed the project findings into local policy and practice.

Date: 2009
Researchers: Jon Glasby; Jo Ellins; Shirley McIver; Deborah Davidson; Denise Tanner; Rosemary Littlechild
Funder: NHS Delivery and Organisation Research and Development Programme (SDO)