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Issues » 2016/6 - Social Work and Violence Towards Women »

Soňa Vávrová, Šárka Dořičáková

The Pseudo-Social Services for Seniors in the Czech Republic: Help or Business?


The aging population in the developed countries and the associated increasing proportion of older people in the population puts – and will put in the future – increasing demands on ensuring adequate services for the target group. Among others, these will also include social services the quality of which is guaranteed in the Czech Republic by the Act No. 108/2006 on Social Services. A high demand together with an inadequate offer creates a space in the market for business activities. The study aims to highlight the issue of unregistered services for the target group of seniors (especially in the form of residential services) that are more and more abundant in the Czech Republic and the offer of these services has been increasing in the area of outpatient and fieldwork services. Given the fact that the operation of pseudo-social services is illegitimate, it is very difficult to explore this practice. The present study describes the mechanism for the operation of unregistered services and the context of their origin. To complete the list of the reasons for the use of unregistered services there are testimonies of fifteen family members of the users of these services included in the study. The conducted interviews showed that the main motive for the use of an unregistered service was an urgent need to take care of a family member along with the current unavailability of a registered social service. We consider this fact a challenge for the social policy with a desired goal to change the current mechanisms.


social services, aging population, market, pseudo-social services, unregistered services, the Act on Social Services

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