Southampton’s housing-with-care services deliver big NHS savings

Extra care schemes support residents to live independently

Housing-with-care schemes in Southampton are responsible for saving the NHS £330,000 per year, according to a report written by Southampton City Council and the Housing Learning and Improvement Network.

The report, which is called ‘Identifying the health care system benefits of housing with care’ highlights a number of societal and economic benefits linked with housing with care (also known as “extra care”).

Southampton is home to five existing schemes, plus Potters Court, a new development currently being built in Millbrook, which will bring the total number of housing-with-care homes in the city to almost 270 by autumn 2020.

Housing with care is designed to enable people with an assessed care need to live independently in their homes for longer, while providing access to 24/7 support services when they need it.

The report highlights the following benefits:

  • Improvements to residents’ quality of life
  • Reductions in the use of health services and associated resources such as GP and community nursing visits
  • Improved hospital discharge rates
  • Significant NHS cost savings to the tune of more than £300,000 per year

Opened in 2016, Erskine Court is a housing-with-care complex for those over 55 in Lordshill, owned and managed by Southampton City Council. The complex provides 54 fully self-contained flats, including support and care on site 24/7 which can adapt as the person’s needs change, allowing residents to maintain their independence for as long as possible. The complex also boasts communal facilities open to the public - including an onsite community café, well-being suite, hairdressers and several lounges where residents and the wider community can meet and enjoy events and activities.

Work is progressing well at Potters Court to deliver 99 purpose-built, affordable council homes, including 84 extra care apartments for qualified city residents with an assessed care need, plus 15 general needs flats for residents aged 50 and over at adjoining Kiln Court in Millbrook. Among its features, Potters Court will benefit from a modern design, external landscaping and a communal courtyard, plus a range of energy-efficiency measures, including solar panels, LED lighting and electrical car charging points.

The findings of the report will now be used to help develop Southampton City Council’s housing-with-care plans, to support more residents to live independently. The council will continue to work with partners, residents and other stakeholders across the city to ensure a range of modern, sustainable care and support services are available for those who need them and to develop our long-term plans for social care in Southampton, which will focus on supporting people in their own homes, including at the council’s housing-with-care schemes.

Councillor Lorna Fielker, Cabinet Member for Adult Care, commented: “Our residents tell us that they want to continue living independently at home for as long as possible, or would like to access alternative options like Housing with Care, rather than go into a residential care home. Our adult care vision for Southampton reflects this and the report supports that. Following the success of Erskine Court in encouraging residents to remain independent, we look forward to welcoming residents to Potters Court in 2020."

Stephanie Ramsey, Director of Quality and Integration and Interim DASS at NHS Southampton City CCG and Southampton City Council, said: “The report is one of the few publications seeking to understand and quantify the benefits of housing with care on the health care economy. It provides an evidence base which shows conclusive links between health and housing and how our integrated way of working between Southampton City Council and Southampton City Clinical Commissioning Group is improving that partnership.”

Read the full paper