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  1. Non-engagement cannot always be attributed to loneliness as it’s a complex beast. The study does not clearly state whether community care clients are participants of CHSP or HCP or other programs. The level of engagement and alleviation of loneliness is distinctly different between programs as a typical HCP person has much more complex care needs and less likely to engage outside the home.

    The study seems to suggest that ‘staff’ (unsure if this refers to assessors, direct workers, other staff) may need more training to ask appropriate questions or facilitate older adults to articulate their social needs. My experience is that the skill in asking questions is to be curious so as to draw out responses, but also to know when not to push. It is in fact the relationship between client and worker/case manager/assessor that’s developed over time that allows this exploration of activities to alleviate isolation and loneliness. Within a HCP environment, there is that interesting element called the budget that somehow becomes the barrier rather than the potential beyond the physical elements of care and support. For too long, older adults have perceived care in terms of personal care and in-home help. I find it really exciting when someone articulate a social need so I can bring it to fruition.

    Social engagement measures are a tool that have a place. I like the idea of organic engagements to reduce isolation/loneliness that are a result of conversations (qualitative) and focus on the person for their benefit. Unfortunately, not all organisations can engage in social research which is a big miss in the care space.

    I am enjoying the shift in AA articles that focus on possibilities and less tackled issues in community care.

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