Your Onchan

Housing services:

Sheltered Housing

What is sheltered housing?

“Sheltered Housing” is a term used to describe a group of self contained flats and bungalows specifically designed for older people.  Normally you will need to be over 60 but, in exceptional circumstances, younger people with a medical need can also be housed in these schemes.

Sheltered housing is a specialised type of accommodation which enables older people to continue enjoying life in the community as independently as possible, with the benefit of friendship, support and communal facilities.  

Each sheltered housing scheme has a Warden.  Pat of the Warden’s role is to be aware of the health and general well being of the residents, and when on duty they will make contact with a resident to check that everything is all right.  Where necessary, in cases of emergency or sickness, they will contact relatives, Doctors or other services.  Each property is connected by a call system to the Warden or the Call Centre allowing 2 way speech.

Wardens provide direct support by contacting all tenants once a day, Monday to Friday

  • To help tenants live independent lives.
  • To be aware of tenants’ individual needs and arrange help if required.
  • To be responsible for the administration of the scheme and its security
  • To deal with emergencies.

The concept of Sheltered Accommodation is now clearly established with a proven track record.  However, there can be a misconception of exactly what such provision is meant to deliver, by prospective or current residents, or occasionally, some of our Medical and Social Services.

The Warden will not undertake the day to day care of individual residents.  This must be provided by relatives, friends or other appropriate services.  Residents of these schemes should therefore be independent and able to care for themselves in their own homes. 

Difference between Sheltered and Residential Housing

For clarity, there is a major difference between Sheltered Accommodation, available for the fit and active elderly whose health at application and allocation is being affected by their current accommodation; and Nursing/Residential Accommodation, which provides a nursing service on a twenty-four hour basis.  The Commissioners wish to emphasize that they are unable to provide anything akin to ‘Nursing’ cover in sheltered accommodation, and that their staff are not permitted to administer medication, or to pick persons up in the event of a fall or collapse. 

Your current accommodation

If the problems relating to your current accommodation are financial, you should contact the Department of Social Care to check that you are receiving all the help and assistance which is available in the circumstances.  It may be that a problem with your current accommodation that could be resolved by an approach to the Occupational Therapy team through your General Practitioner.

Sheltered Housing Application

All accommodation is made available subject to the applicant having a medical need for sheltered accommodation, but is physically able to care for themselves, albeit with the assistance of such welfare services as are provided for the general public.  The medical need must be made worse by the accommodation in which the applicant is currently living, and proof of this together with suitability for sheltered accommodation may be sought by the Commissioners prior to allocation.   Please see Sheltered Housing Application Section for details of applying. 

Deteriorating Health

You should be aware on application that should your medical condition deteriorate so that you are unable to cope alone with the difficulties of ill-health, the Commissioners reserve the right to review the tenancy agreement in the light of their duties and administrative responsibilities, together with your personal circumstances.   If your medical condition deteriorates to such an extent that the Commissioners feel sheltered accommodation is no longer suitable for you, then we will work with you and your health care professionals to seek an appropriate solution.


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