The healthy ageing programme includes research on physical, mental and social wellbeing, healthy work and retirement, and effective health and social care. In the programme we will develop, evaluate and translate public health interventions (any type of treatment, preventive care, or test that a person could take or undergo e.g. welfare rights advice) to maintain and improve health, and reduce health inequalities - the differences in health which persist across society - in later life.
Average life expectancy has increased dramatically over the last three decades. Present challenges include extending healthy life expectancy and reducing the social, economic and health burden which comes with people living longer. Achieving good quality of life in later years requires primary prevention (to protect healthy people from developing a disease) and secondary prevention (to halt or slow the progress of disease (if possible) in its earliest stages). We will focus on both health related behaviours (actions taken by a person to maintain, attain, or regain good health and to prevent illness) including their use of health care, and social interventions (e.g. ‘The Silver Line’ helpline for older people) to promote wellbeing, in particular among socially and economically disadvantaged groups.
The research involves collaborations with the Institute for Ageing & Health (IAH) at Newcastle University (e.g. the MRC funded 85+ study), NIHR School for Public Health Research (SPHR) and other national and international collaborators. There are strong links with other Fuse programmes, in particular those focused on behaviour change and inequalities.
The programme objectives are to: