1.4.13 Defining a ‘good death’

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1.2.9 Nick

In our society we tend to expect not to have to face the likelihood of death until our 70s at least, but one group of people who are having to face the prospect of death at a relatively young age are those diagnosed as HIV-positive. Controversy surrounds the issue of whether those at risk of contracting the virus should have the blood test which might give them that death sentence. At the time of writing there is no clear evidence that any treatment can improve the prognosis, even if taken at
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1.2.1 Death and Tolstoy

Inevitably, the way in which people deal with death, whether by denial or by the construction of a complex system of beliefs and myths, leads to questions about the meaning of life. For Julia Neuberger this is the lesson of death. ‘It is nothing to fear of itself, but it concentrates the mind powerfully in examining what it is we mean by life’ (Neuberger and White, 1991, p. 13).

1 Attachment to place

In this unit we are going to consider the way in which people identify and become attached to places, buildings, objects, and how this attachment can contribute to personal well-being or how we feel about ourselves (Low and Altman, 1992). Looking at why places become important provides a basis for asking questions about what happens when people have to move, a common occurrence for people in need of care services.

The purpose of this unit is to focus on the psychological environment, ho
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3.3.1 Care: a cautious definition

For study purposes, we do need a definition of care, just as we needed a definition of informal carer. So we propose that in the context of health and social care we define care as:

something that is needed when people cannot function in daily life without the practical help of others.

But, as I have shown, care is a loaded word. It is both a word used by ordinary people to mean love, tende
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3.2.1 Words and images

Words like ‘mental defective’ are also linked with images. Together, the words and the images make a powerful impact.

Activity 9 Words and images

0 hours 10 minutes

Look a
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1.5.4 Networks

The way Katrina's story is presented leaves out others who may be involved with the family. This is because the story was part of a campaign by Community Care magazine to highlight the plight of young carers. It made sense to emphasise Katrina's role and omit information which might detract from the impact of a single-issue campaign.

The discovery of young carers is an interesting example of what happens when the official spotlight is turned on a particular group in society. Ther
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2.4.1 Interdependence

The definition suggests that it is a simple matter to recognise the carer in a given situation. In some, perhaps most, care relationships this is true. However, the case of the Durrant family is complicated. Both Arthur and Lynne are included in categories often seen as needing the services of a carer – Lynne has a learning disability, Arthur's health is impaired by illness. But both have a claim to be seen as carers, too.

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2.4 Defining terms

Why are we spending so much time and energy on asking whether Lynne is a carer? Does it matter? It would matter if Lynne wanted to apply for financial or practical support as a carer. It matters to budget holders to know how many people qualify, because carers are eligible for financial assistance. It would also matter to organisations which campaign for the needs of carers – organisations like the Carers National Association, Mencap, Age Concern or MIND. It would matter to a social worker
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Introduction

Arrangements for care and support which people manage for themselves or have organised for them privately or informally tell us something about the shifting borders between funded and non-funded care, between health and social care, and between paid and unpaid care work. They also demonstrate how the reality of the mixed economy of care is played out in the arrangements which people make for care and suipport in their own households.

This unit focuses on the care arrangments people make
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Acknowledgements

Grateful acknowledgement is made to the following sources for permission to reproduce material in this unit:

The content acknowledged below is Proprietary and.is made available under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Licence  See Terms and Conditions.


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1 Transitions

The term ‘transition’ implies a change, and change has implications for the identity of the person who experiences it. It is likely to require a period of adjustment to assimilate and respond to it. Hopson and Adams (1976) suggest that a major transition, however triggered, can result in a cycle of changes to an individual's self-esteem. For example, moving into residential care is a major transition in anyone's life, yet older people are often assessed for, or seek, residential or nursin
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Introduction

This unit considers working with people in group care and residential settings. Social workers play a critical role in supporting service users in moves to and from residential care, and they should be capable of assessing needs and the quality of care provision. The activities in the unit focus on the lives of three people living in a nursing and residential home for elderly and disabled people. Although many of the practice examples relate to work with older people, the values and principle
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3 Summary

This unit argued that managers should seek out and listen to service users' views, and considered some of the problems in doing this as well as models that are effective. It is not always straightforward or easy to engage service users in consultation but, like Jane Reast, the practice-led manager will think it is important to hear directly from service users, rather than always having knowledge and information mediated through the accounts of frontline workers.


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1.2 Service users' views: Whose views?

Several questions arise about the kind of feedback from users that is most relevant for social care organisations to seek and respond to. What about people who are unwilling users of social care services? How important is it that their voices be heard? For example, people may come into contact with services as a result of formal detention in hospital against their wishes, under the Mental Health Act 1983. The views of children, adults and professionals have to be balanced. There are dilemmas
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References

Putnam, R.D. (2000) Bowling Alone: The collapse and revival of American community, New York, Simon Schuster.
Stott, M. and Hodges, J. (1996) ‘Local exchange and trading systems, never knowingly understood’, Local Economy, November, pp. 266–8.
Taylor, M. (2003) Public Policy in the Community, London, Palgrave Macmillan.
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3 Biographical perspective: using pathways

You will shortly be hearing excerpts from interviews with four men, who were contacted through the Swansea Cyrenians. They are all from very different backgrounds, and talk about their own experiences of homelessness.

The clips are only brief insights into life without a home, but they do demonstrate the importance of a biographical perspective in understanding the unique and diverse needs of individual homeless people.

Looking at situations from a biological perspective is
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1 The Swansea Cyrenians

In this unit, you will hear from four people who have been helped by a secular voluntary organisation offering support and assistance to the homeless.

The Swansea Cyrenians is one of several organisations that are in touch with homeless people in Swansea. Since 1973, it has been helping some of the most vulnerable people in society, including those who have suffered from homelessness. At the time of the recordings, in 1999, the organisation was running a number of schemes to help
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Introduction

This unit will help you understand how it is possible to meet the needs of a particular minority community – the Chinese who live in Northern Ireland. The audio clips will give you an opportunity to listen to some first hand experiences and discover some of the problems that this community are facing. You will also hear about the needs of the community in terms of care and support, particularly in terms of meeting the needs of older Chinese inhabitants.

The audio file was recorded in
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6.3 Responsibility for health and illness

In Activity 6 you explored factors which influence people's experience of health and we noted that inequalities in health are clearly related to the conditions of people's lives, such as their housing, income and education. On the other hand, health education messages have tended to focus on behaviour – what we
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