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This blog is a space for sharing news about OPSWISE with everyone who is interested. We will be blogging about the study as it develops, sharing information and providing links to useful resources. We welcome any comments that you may have. If you are interested in finding out more about the OPSWISE study, visit us at


The NHS and its social care partners are under pressure to develop new service models, processes, roles and expertise in the care of older people.

One in five people are estimated to be aged over 65 by 2033 (Wise, 2010), while 70% of the health budget is spent on those over 65 (Oliver, 2010). Assistant care workers support the work of the regulated, professional workforce in their day to day duties. However, present use and development of assistant care workers has been somewhat ad hoc, with a range of practices and approaches adopted due to the various roles performed (Nancarrow et al, 2010) and differences between NHS Trusts (Spilsbury et al, 2010).

The study investigates how workforce development interventions improve skills and care standards of clinical support workers within older people’s services. This review will fill a gap in the evidence base by identifying the interventions that have the potential to enhance the skills and care standards in the clinical support workforce for older people.

We are specifically interested in uncovering how and why workforce development interventions may impact, and on whom, to guide workforce development policy and practice.

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