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Social care responses to self-neglect and hoarding among older people: what works in practice?


The overall aim of this exploratory study is to improve practice understanding of what works in responses to self-neglect and hoarding among older people.


The study is using a mixed-methods approach. The literature and policy review phase will involve: 1. Analysis of research literature on hoarding and self-neglect. 2. Review of national and local policy on hoarding and self-neglect. 3. Review of published literature on the perceptions/experiences of practitioners and of service users/those with personal experience/clients of hoarding and self-neglect. We will also conduct an analysis of Safeguarding Adults Reviews in this field.

Working with six sites in England, we will conduct interviews with safeguarding managers, practitioners and service users and family members. Finally, Michela Tinelli (LSE) will lead on an exploratory evaluation of the economic impact of self-neglect and hoarding among older people.

We are working with Age UK London on this project.

Summary of findings

The project began in May 2020 and both qualitative and quantitative findings will be reported throughout as well as at the project’s end.



London School of Economics

Age UK

Project status: Ongoing

Principal investigators

Woolham 160

John Woolham

Senior Research Fellow

Prof J Manthorpe 160

Jill Manthorpe

Director, NIHR Health & Social Care Workforce Research Unit


  • Hoarding
  • Self-neglect
  • Older
  • Safeguarding