Examining the dynamics of choice: the context for informal care
The work undertaken as part of the Anniversary Lectureship involved a literature review of empirical work on issues related to carers and choice. One of the aims was to provide a background scoping paper for the Department of Health programme, summarising evidence about the dynamics of choice for carers.
SPRU research team
- Hillary Arksey
The current policy emphasis is on choice and personalisation. However, choice is a phenomenon that, for carers, can be both a problem and a challenge. It is not clear what processes, negotiations and trade-offs are involved for carers whose personal choices and preferences for themselves are inextricably tangled up with:
- their choices and preferences on behalf of the care recipient
- the choices and preferences of the care recipient themselves
In these circumstances, carers may feel that the true extent of choice available to them is very limited.
The resulting paper (details below) looked at three areas in which carers are likely to face choices, to explore the realities of choice as they experience it. The three areas were receiving social services support; entry to long-term care; and combining work and care.