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Housing and Dementia Research Consortium (HDRC)

The Housing and Dementia Research Consortium (HDRC) is a membership group of organisations and individuals who are committed to research and knowledge exchange focusing on ‘what works’ for people living with dementia in housing and care settings. 

A core group of organisations makes up the steering group and funds the Research Coordinator’s position. Since September 2014 the HDRC has been hosted by ADS.

Aim

The aim of the HDRC is to deliver timely, appropriate, high quality research in order to build a stronger evidence base to support the way services and buildings are designed for people with dementia and to directly influence policy and practice in relation to accommodation and care services for people with dementia in the UK and beyond.

Background

In recent years, housing providers have increasingly focused on the needs of people with dementia through the design of the built and social environment, and in the way care and support services are provided. A variety of models and approaches have been adopted but there is as yet limited evidence as to what works best for people with dementia at all stages of their journey from diagnosis to end of life. 

A group of housing providers identifying research priorities within the sector offers significant advantages over any single provider seeking research funding, while a consortium increases opportunities for coordinated, multi-site research. In addition, findings from such research are likely to be more generally applicable than research undertaken on single provider developments. 

Relevant, large-scale research can have a significant impact on the sorts of developments commissioned in the future, as well as current practice, thereby directly benefiting people with dementia living in different accommodation settings. Finally, a consortium can enable housing providers and their service users to be more active research partners, rather than being passive recipients or research subjects.

Services

The HDRC is uniquely placed to understand the housing related priorities of people living with dementia and their carers. In 2014-2015 the HDRC consulted with its members, with people living with dementia in different housing settings, their family carers and care staff in order to set the research priorities and provide an evidence base to guide the HDRC’s work. 

The HDRC is well placed to understand the needs of the housing sector. The HDRC’s work is shaped by its members and steering group which include some of the largest, most innovative and well-respected housing providers in the UK. 

We can provide support with: 

• Developing a dementia strategy. 

• Creating a dementia friendly community. 

• Carrying out research, evaluation and consultancy projects. 

• Dementia friendly design assessment. 

• Providing access to expertise through our extensive networks of academic researchers in dementia, housing and care. 

• Facilitating access to research participants. 

• Undertaking reviews of the literature on specific topics. 

• Developing Briefing papers. 

• Helping with the preparation of applications for funding.

Membership

Approximately half of the 90 members of the HDRC are accommodation and care providers and commissioners, and the rest other interested parties such as academics, architects, consultants, researchers, policy makers and third sector organisations. 

In order to ensure the manageability and focus of the consortium, a core group of members form a steering group which engages with the wider membership as appropriate and provides funding for the Research Coordinator. 

Current steering group members are: 

• ExtraCare Charitable Trust 

• Housing & Care 21 

• MHA 

• Your Housing Group 

• Hanover

The Housing Learning and Improvement Network (Housing LIN) and the Alzheimer’s Society are also represented. 

For more information about the HDRC, please visit the website at: http://housingdementiaresearch.wordpress.com/ 

This includes information about its Annual events including presentations made at the most recent one on 10 November 2016  - these can be found here

If you are interested in joining the HDRC, please contact the Research Coordinator, Dr Julie Barrett at: j.barrett@worc.ac.uk