The UK population is ageing and adapting to this trend poses economic, social and political challenges. Finding the best way to respond requires interdisciplinary research and working together with external stakeholders, including the general public. 

The University of York Ageing Network provides the necessary platform to make this happen. It builds on existing collaborations across departments and faculties and forges new working relationships. Together, our network members deliver research that speaks to local priorities, with national and international applicability, within the university's Ageing Research portfolio.

Older LGBTQ people and COVID-19

Previous research has suggested that older lesbian, gay, bisexual and queer (LGBTQ) people might be more at risk of isolation and have less access to support than other older people.

This study conducted a survey of 375 older LGBTQ people living in the UK, exploring how they were affected by the COVID lockdown. Almost half reported a worsening of their mental health, mitigated by being in a cohabiting couple and/or access to online informal and formal social support. Access to LGBTQ networks were considered essential to maintain wellbeing and a positive sense of community.

It is essential that policies relating to public health crises take into consideration the support needs of older LGBTQ people, and other marginalised older adults.

Visit the project website

Featured researcher
Sue Westwood

Sue Westwood

Dr Sue Westwood is a social gerontologist and socio-legal researcher with an interest in ageing, diversity and equality, and, in particular, the equitable delivery of health and social care to older women and older LGBTQ people.

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Falls prevention in older people

The Occupational Therapist Intervention Study (OTIS) was a multi-centred randomised controlled trial with an economic evaluation and nested qualitative study. It evaluated the clinical and cost effectiveness of a home environment assessment and modification, to reduce falls among older people.

Read the findings of the OTIS trial

Featured researcher
David Torgerson

David Torgerson

Professor David Torgerson is the Director of the York Trials Unit. As well as being a health economist he is a trial methodologist with over 400 publications, including a portfolio of trials of interventions aimed at improving the health of older people. He was senior investigator on the OTIS trial.

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Self-funding social care

Making decisions about social care in later life can be complex and emotional. For many people who pay for their care themselves, known as self-funders, there is so much information available that it can be hard to find the right information or know who to talk to. The purpose of this project is to create a decision support tool that aims to help older people make decisions about paying for social care.

Find out more about self-funding social care

Featured researcher
Mark Wilberforce

Mark Wilberforce

Dr Wilberforce is a social care and social work researcher with a background in economics, and a particular interest in the community support of older people with dementia and mental health needs. 

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Mental wellbeing in later life

The MODS programme of research aims to develop and evaluate an intervention using Behavioural Activation within a Collaborative Care framework for older adults with long term physical-health conditions and low mood or depression. The intervention aims to support people to improve their physical and psychological functioning.

Visit the project webpage

Featured researcher
David Ekers

David Ekers

Professor David Ekers is a nurse leader with over 30 years' experience in mental health. For the past 15 years he has operated as a senior Nurse Consultant in Tees Esk and Wear Valleys NHS FT combining clinical, research and leadership roles.

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