Housing and self-neglect: the responses of health, social care and environmental health agencies

William Lauder, Isobel Anderson, Aileen Barclay

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    13 Citations (Scopus)


    Substantiated cases of elder self-neglect have been reported to be more common than either elder abuse or neglect. It is a problem that often requires the active involvement of a whole range of health, social, housing, police and voluntary agencies. The ways in which these various agencies respond to self-neglect and how they interact with one another is not known. This research explored the ways in which different health and social care organizations respond to the problems associated with selfneglect. Research methods involved qualitative in-depth interviews with housing, healthcare, environmental health and social workers and a sample of their clients who were described as living in self-neglecting circumstances. This study revealed a lack of joint working across the relevant professions in relation to self-neglect. Better co-ordinated intervention could improve effectiveness and help make available resources go further. The study also suggests a need for a preventative approach to self-neglect, although further work would be required to develop indicators for early intervention.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)317-325
    Number of pages9
    JournalJournal of Interprofessional Care
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - Aug 2005


    • Self-neglect
    • Diogenes Syndrome
    • Interdisciplinary working
    • Housing
    • Mental illness


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