Community Care and Housing Management
In a social housing environment increasingly dominated by performance and control, community care has proved one of the most significant policy trends within recent years. Although not primarily a housing policy, it has had the effect of redefining the parameters of housing management almost by default. The process has involved the relocation of the treatment and support of frail and vulnerable individuals and households away from longstay institutions, into domestic settings within the community. This has generated considerable resource implications for the health and caring professions as decentralisation often proves more resource intensive than delivering services centrally. The impact on housing professionals has also been significant, having been expected to shoulder additional responsibilities which have required new skills and extra resources. The locus of community care has shifted beyond developing specialist, sheltered accommodation, to a position in which many mental health sufferers are increasingly rehoused into general needs housing. In many cases the transition to community care, i.e. rehousing people with acute care needs into independent accommodation, has created few problems. It usually represents the culmination of a successful process of rehabilitation and reintegration into the community.
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