Supporting care homes


In the UK there are over 400,000 people living in care homes (both with and without nursing). Coastal West Sussex has one of the oldest populations in England with this trend expected to grow. With age, comes increased health complexities, fragility and the need for increased support, which can include the services of care homes.

National research highlights the current complexity of the care home residents cohort:

  • 70% of residents have dementia.
  • Two thirds of care home residents are immobile or require assistance with mobility.
  • Two thirds live with urinary or faecal incontinence or both.
  • The median number of prescribed medications is nine per resident.

Our local ageing population is increasing rapidly, and it is vital that healthcare services are equipped to and organised in such a way that they are able to deliver an equitable and high quality service to this cohort of patients. We believe more could be done to support care homes to look after their residents and to keep care home residents well for longer.

Coastal West Sussex has approximately 266 care homes with approximately 7151 beds. These homes include care homes for the elderly with nursing, care homes for the elderly without nursing, care homes for people with learning disabilities and/or mental health conditions and physical rehabilitation/disability homes. The map below shows the geographical distribution of Coastal’s care homes. Each red pointer can be expanded for information regarding the home.

Please note: the above interactive map should work well in modern browsers; if you have any difficulty please try viewing it in Chrome, Safari or Firefox.

What care homes think

In October 2015, we conducted a care home survey in order to establish the major issues for care home staff in CWS.  70 out of the 267 care homes responded and we found that the major concerns raised were similar for both care homes with and without nursing. The main issues or worries highlighted were:

  • CQC compliance
  • Staffing (Particularly recruitment)
  • Access to community services
  • Access to primary care
  • Discharge process from the acute

Further engagement is planned with care home staff in April 2016. 

Objectives of this project

We want to:

  • Improve the co-ordination of care for care home residents in CWS
  • Support care home staff to better navigate relevant healthcare services and to develop care home staff existing skills
  • Reduce urgent contacts from care homes for the elderly including call outs to Secamb, urgent requests to GP and non-elective admissions

In order to achieve these objectives, we will do a number of things:

  • Review existing services and undertake a gap analysis- this will form the service review
  • Create an online community services directory for care homes to access
  • Undertake a general nursing home locally commissioned service review
  • Design an enhanced model of care in Arun to include a localised locally commissioned Sservice and the implementation of the SystmOne nursing home module in care homes with nursing.

Comments and questions

If you have any thoughts or comments please contact Danielle Plowman on