A rising, aging population and chronic lack of investment in social care is having a demonstrable and direct impact upon all areas of citizens’ health and wellbeing.

Traditional health services are already at capacity and the present system pushes people to the default point of safety: the hospital. Along with the cost of care for older people increasing, it is necessary to integrate these groups more closely with their communities, keeping them healthier and in their own homes safely for longer.

Academics from Canterbury Christ Church University, along with 13 partners from the UK, Netherlands, France and Belgium have taken part in a two year, 4 million Euros project to research and address the current gaps in the care of people aged 50+ with at least one chronic health condition.

The aims of the EMPOWERCARE project were to empower people to take more responsibility for their care using technology and local services to keep them healthy, motivated and out of hospital care.

A presentation of findings and best practice solutions from the project will take place in a final conference in January next year. The conference, on 25 January 2023, will include exciting keynote speakers, a skills lab, demonstrations of best practise, as well as talks on project outputs and a discussion on the future of the project. You can register your interest in attending the virtual conference here.

Eleni Hatzidimitriadou, Professor of Community Psychology and Public Mental Health at canterbury Christ Church University and Evaluation Lead for the project, said: “All too often, older people are not fully involved in decisions concerning their own health and wellbeing, and the right support is not in place to enable them to remain in their homes, supported by their local community.

“Through the EMPOWERCARE project we have identified the main issues facing communities in caring for the growing ageing population and brought together existing, shared practices, proven solutions, including innovative technologies, from across Belgium, France, the Netherlands and the UK to help support people and respond to current gaps in the care system.

“We would be delighted for people to join us for our final conference for the project.”

Register your interest here in attending the EMPOWERCARE final conference, virtually on Wednesday, 25 January 2023. Key topics to be discussed include:

  • EMPOWERment strategy
  • workforce resources
  • technology blueprint
  • Evaluation.
Interreg 2 Seas mers Zeeen EMPOWERCARE logo

Notes to editors

  • The EMPOWERCARE project was awarded more than 4 million Euros of European Regional Development Funding via the Interreg VA 2Seas programme in 2020.
  • Key outputs of the project include a strategy which empowers people to manage their care through best practice, empowerment methods, technology, cross country and integrated care systems, durability, community and neighbourhood strengthening. The creation of a Technology Blueprint Tool to help the health and care workforce identify and evaluate how digital solutions support their services, designed by Belgian partners VITO and University of Brighton. While Canterbury Christ Church University (CCCU) led the evaluation of EMPOWERCARE which identified the impact of the project. The evaluation identified the contexts and strategies that are effective in achieving the EMPOWERCARE outcomes and for whom and why they work in particular circumstances.

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