Impact of a telephone/touchscreen based regular contact care and support system on physical and mental health outcomes, including loneliness and psychological wellbeing in older adults
Prof C Holland
Prof Niall Hayes
No more applications being accepted
Competition Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
Evidence suggests that people who feel lonely have more health problems than people who are happy with how much companionship they have. Some studies suggest that loneliness is linked to losing resilience to illnesses in older age, and to risk of dementia, heart problems or a stroke. Finding new solutions to loneliness and the anxiety of living alone is important for all of us as we get older.
This project will examine a potential solution called “Alertacall”. It is already in use in some areas, and while it seems popular, we don’t yet know how much of a difference it makes to loneliness and wellbeing. The tool is a digitally based service which increases personal contact for older people, with one aim being to confirm wellbeing everyday. The research student will investigate the tool and whether it helps with loneliness and anxiety. In the study, the student will select participants to ensure that people with a range of living arrangements, health issues, and social circumstances will be able to test this, and will include people who already use the tool and those who don’t. The student will work together with the Alertacall company, and partners, e.g. social housing providers and local authority social services teams, to identify individuals to participate in the research. The issues around health and other inequalities will be assessed throughout, ensuring that inequalities are ameliorated, not exacerbated by the introduction of the tool.
The student will use a mixed-methods approach (qualitative and quantitative methods) and will combine mental health, ageing and technology research to determine the impact of the daily contact services on wellbeing, including loneliness, depression and anxiety, and psychological resilience of older people living alone. The research will investigate specific features of the system to determine mechanisms that improve outcomes.
Application is by CV and covering letter. The covering letter must detail your interest in the studentship, related experience and training and suitability for the position. Applications are to be sent to Professor Carol Holland, [Email Address Removed]
The studentships will be for 4 years full-time (subject to satisfactory progress) covering the tuition fees at Home/EU rates. A stipend in line with the UK Research Council rates. Please note that funding is only available for the first 3 years but a 4th year is unfunded for writing up.
Application is by CV and covering letter which details your interest in the studentship, related experience and training and suitability for the position. Applications are to be sent to Professor Carol Holland, [Email Address Removed]
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