Welcome back for the December edition of Care Sector News Review.
Each month, we'll outline the most noteworthy stories from the care sector, including care news, medical research and awareness initiatives.
Read on to find out what's been happening across the care sector in December 2017:
- Care home provider, Four Seasons, looks set to fall into administration unless it agrees a £26m rescue package. Former ministers have called for the government to intervene to protect the 17,000 residents who could be affected.
- Over one third of care home residents in Swindon are living in conditions that are 'inadequate' or 'require improvement', according to new analysis of Care Quality Commission figures. Despite this, Swindon ranks 42nd in the list of 151 councils nationwide.
- More care homes in Scotland have been closing than opening for the sixth year in a row, sparking fears of an impending bed shortage. Care homes are closing at a rate of one per month, with rising costs and staff shortages blamed for this trend.
- Social care in Northern Ireland should be means-tested, according to a long-awaited report commissioned by former health minister Michelle O'Neill. The report also called for social care to be put on a par with healthcare.
- Scientists have made an "enormously significant" breakthrough in the search for potential treatments for Huntington's disease. The research team has identified an experimental new drug - the first that appears to suppress the effects of the condition.
- An international research team has identified the build-up of urea on the brain as a potential cause of dementia. This finding - derived from experiments on both animal and humans - builds on a similar study published in 2016.
- Hearing loss and the onset of dementia may be linked, according to a new study from Alzheimer's Research UK. The team now intends to carry out further research to discern whether hearing aids could slow the development of dementia.
- Consuming 40g of cheese per day could reduce heart disease and stroke risks, a team of researchers from China has put forward. The study sampled over 200,000 individuals, and identified a 10% and 14% drop in stroke and heart disease risks respectively.
- The UN's International Day of Persons with Disabilities took place on 3 December, promoting this year's theme: 'Transformation towards sustainable and resilient society for all'. The event - held each year since 1992 - aims to promote the rights of everyone with disabilities.
- Men across the country joined together to grow out their facial hair in support of Decembeard 2017 - an initiative designed to raise awareness and funds to support research into bowel cancer. This condition is the second biggest cancer killer in the UK, but is treatable with timely intervention.
- Dancing Recall - a support group that helps people with dementia stay active through dance - is appealing for new members following the initial success of the initiative. The award-winning group is active across various locations in the North.
Join us again in the last week of January for the next edition of Care Sector News Review.
If you'd like to find out more about The Good Care Group's live-in care services, contact our friendly team.