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Social Isolation & Loneliness

What do we know about reducing loneliness? 
We all experience loneliness in different ways, and it can affect us at different stages and transition points in life. 
Tackling loneliness is produced by What Works Centre for Wellbeing and is a ‘review of reviews’ being based on a sift of 364 evidence reviews from across the world, and within the UK.  It’s a first step towards understanding what we know about what works to reduce loneliness.

Loneliness and social isolation in older people (February 2016)
Feelings of loneliness and social isolation can affect people at any stage in their life, but are particularly acute for older people. Research has made important distinctions between the two states, looked at some of the risk factors and identified the effects both on individuals and public services, particularly in social care and health. Despite extensive research into the nature and scale of loneliness, there is a lack of high quality evidence to demonstrate the impact of different interventions to combat its effects. There are also differences of opinion about the relative impact of interventions that work at either an individual or a community level. However some case studies highlighted by the Local Government Information Unit indicates good returns on investment.

Older Peoples Isolation Index: Results for Wirral (March 2015) 
Wirral postcodes were mapped by their chance of containing older people who are at risk of social isolation, producing a report using an older people isolation index (OPII) based on Mosaic geodemographic data. We found that Bidston & St James ward and Birkenhead & Tranmere ward had the highest average older people isolation index score. There were three hotspots of potential older people at risk of isolation around Oxton, West Kirby & Hoylake, and New Ferry, Bebington & Bromborough

Evidence review for Older People and social isolation (May 2015)
This evidence review produced by Business & Public Health Intelligence Team provides local insight into this growing issue.

Campaign to End Loneliness (online resource) (July 2015)
Loneliness and Isolation: Guidance for Local Authorities and Commissioners. This guidance provides adult social care, clinical commissioning groups and public health teams with useful resources on planning how to address loneliness experienced by older people in their local populations here.

Campaign to End Loneliness Research Bulletin website 

Promising approaches to reducing loneliness and isolation in later life (January 2015)
Loneliness and social isolation are widely recognised as among the most significant and entrenched issues facing our ageing society. This AgeUK guide sets out to reflect the full range of initiatives being undertaken to tackle loneliness, and which show promise in tackling this serious public health issue. It asks experts what is being done to tackle loneliness in communities up and down the country. Access the report.

Loneliness - Rapid Evidence Review by Liverpool Public Health Observatory (July 2014)
This report covers the prevalence of loneliness, its impact on health and wellbeing and effective interventions that can be used to ameliorate these effects.

Wirral Public Health Annual Report (PHAR) 2013 on Social Isolation
This Annual PHAR on Social isolation is a significant problem within our society and one that we should all be concerned about. Whilst most of us are fortunate enough to have family, friends and neighbours to provide us with a reliable social network, there are some for whom regular social interaction is non-existent

Key information sources for you to consider: