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The InCARE project will contribute to the design  of a coherent and coordinated approach to the development of national long-term care policy and care services at local and regional level, by establishing socially innovative and participatory decision-making processes.

We work with care users, care provider organizations and policy-makers in Spain, Austria and North Macedonia to design, implement and scale-up innovative care services, with the ultimate goal of improving the well-being of older people and their families and increase their access to adequate and affordable care.

[translated] There is a need to develop care services in the country, especially home (community-based) care as well as mental health, rehabilitation and recovery, and palliative care services.

Woman, 38
Republic of Moldova
[Translated] I would like such surveys to be more efficient and to have more participation in them, and consequently I would like to talk and learn more about these issues in order to take action and make life easier for many individuals.

Woman, 22

“Given the current state of care facilities, I would prefer to take care of my parents/loved ones at home and if I should require services I would prefer to be taken care of at home. The way I view care facilities in their present state is that these facilities provide everything needed to keep a person alive but greatly reduce their quality of life (e.g., loss of dignity, reduced access to meaningful activities and social interaction, loss of agency etc.). I believe it is practical, feasible and in governing bodies best interest in the long term to improve quality of care in these facilities. We now have good evidence for activities/programs that can improve wellbeing and physical health in older adults. We should be utilizing this evidence to improve the lives of older adults. If the quality of care provided in these facilities drastically improves, I would view this as the preferred option. But we are not there yet.”

Woman, 31
[translated] Centers for socializing of the elderly should be provided, for playing chess, knitting, and so on; because after they retire they are at home all day and have no communication with other people.

Man, 36
North Macedonia

I visit my stepmother who is in a wheelchair after a severe stroke 14 years ago. She can cope with the costs of care so I can see the restrictions she faces even when there is sufficient money. She is physically but not mentally disabled. She is unable to use a smart phone or an I-pad and needs 24 [hour] help. She cannot use even disabled toilets. Access into taxis is difficult and impossible in a private car.

Woman, 74
United Kingdom

Thanks for keeping this in the public eye. No easy answers, I’m not sure I agree with all of mine today, but we must keep trying!!

United Kingdom
[Translated] I was my husband’s caregiver for 7 years. He passed away from a rare and orphaned neurodegenerative disease (PSP). When the diagnosis was announced, we felt abandoned. Then it was very difficult to find quality help even if we paid. I retired 2 years before the legal age to continue to help him. Our last and most terrible test was to have his advance directives respected. He could no longer swallow, so he could not eat or drink. He refused the gastrostomy and wanted deep sedation. I had to fight again and again to have his wishes respected. So abandoned from beginning to end!

Woman, 62
[Translated] I lost my father last year (cancer). We kept him at home, with my brothers and sister, almost until the end; we are now looking after our mother. She has been in a nursing home for several months. We take turns every day to get her up, wash her, dress her, feed her and take her out. The staff at the care home is always on leave, there is a high turnover of staff. Not only does my mother pay, we each pay a small part of the accommodation, but we are the ones who take care of her from morning to night. That’s why we are part-time.

Woman, 55
[Translated] Support and training for family caregivers is needed in many ways.

Woman, 66
[Translated] I would not want my future to be in the hands of politicians but in the hands of qualified experts.

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