25/Jul/2014 - Last News Update: 04:58

NHS report calls for joined up plan to cut elderly falls

Category: Health

Published: 10th May 2012 02:42:09

A more joined-up strategy, driven at the local rather than national level, is needed to cut falls by the elderly, says an NHS Confederation report.

They warn that prevention needs to become a key priority as the elderly population grows.

The group says not enough is being done to stop people falling again after an initial incident.

The Department of Health said it was working hard to prevent falls and improve the treatment of them.

Injuries from falls are the cause of leading death in people over 75 in the UK.

Integrated approach

Jo Webber, representing ambulance services in the NHS Confederation, said: "Half the people in this country over 80 will suffer a fall this year.

The quality of falls prevention services vary a great deal from place to place - and this is unacceptable”

"Falls are not only physically debilitating but, particularly for older people, they really knock their confidence and can slow recovery.

"We have to take the opportunity of the NHS reforms to get organisations across health, social care and local authorities working together.

"Effective falls services that are already up and running across the country show that for little initial investment, patients are getting better care, more falls are being prevented and money is being saved."

The NHS Confederation, a group that represents NHS managers in England, believes that government policies for the last 20 years have not been entirely successful, with many patients experiencing disjointed care.

They recommend that local government, the NHS and social care services work more closely together and suggest using a patient's NHS number as a way for tracking and assessment.

'Unacceptable' care

It has been estimated by the Department of Health that such a fall prevention strategy could cut falls by 30%.

A Department of Health spokesman said: "The coalition government realises the devastating effects that falls can have on people's health, and the contribution that falls make to the level of hospital admissions and costs.

"We know that (treatment is) most effective when social care and the NHS work together, and we are putting in place the legal conditions and financial incentives to drive greater integration."

Michelle Mitchell, from the charity Age UK said: "We warmly welcome this briefing and urge local organisations to implement the recommendations.

"The quality of falls prevention services vary a great deal from place to place - and this is unacceptable. We should have effective services in all areas to support people who have fallen and prevent it from happening again.

"We know that by investing in specialist services that help older people to avoid falling and breaking bones, we can save the health service money."

BBC News External Link Show Citation

Latest News

Harvard Citation

BBC News, 2012. NHS report calls for joined up plan to cut elderly falls [Online] (Updated 10th May 2012)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/1427567/NHS-report-calls-for-joined-up-plan-to-cut-elderly-falls [Accessed 25th Jul 2014]

News In Other Categories

  • Tom Byer: FA must 'nurture' children as young as two

    A leading football coach, who believes in "nurturing" children as young as two, has been invited to tell the Football Association how to develop a successful England national side.
  • 'Disobedient objects' chart history of protest at V&A

    Protest movements, from the Suffragettes to Occupy, have produced their own unique items designed to challenge the status quo. And for the first time these "disobedient objects" have been brought together in an exhibition at London's Victoria & Albert museum.
  • Senegal’s cattle rustlers face mobile tech fightback

    "This is our concern. When it comes to raising cattle it's our job, when you're born you see your father doing it, it represents everything to us."
  • Exam reform delayed by 'significant numbers' of schools

    Dozens of schools across Scotland are delaying the introduction of new Highers in popular school subjects, according to BBC Scotland research.
  • Bristol Academy extends reach overseas with first foreign students

    With the doors to its brand new £1million training centre officially open, one of the UK's leading apprentice training providers, Bristol based S&B Automotive Academy, is showcasing its world-class facilities by launching a series of foreign student exchanges for the first time in its 41-year history. To get a flavour of what life is like as an apprentice in the UK, the Academy hosted 16 apprentice engineers and bus drivers from the G9 Automotive College in Hamburg, Germany, as part of a Europe-wide vocational training initiative called the ‘Leonardo Programme’ with support from the European Social Fund. In a reciprocal arrangement, S&B will be sending nine apprentices to Germany during February 2012 so that they can get an appreciation of life in the automotive industry on the Continent. A further three German exchange groups are being planned for next year. Designed to assist the development of vocational skills and training across Europe, including work placements for trainees, the Leonardo Programme has a budget of €1.75bn, which is helping to encourage UK organisations to work with their counterparts abroad. In what is expected to be another challenging year for employers in the UK automotive sector, S&B’s Chief Executive, Jon Winter, claims that the exchange initiative will bring many benefits to the Academy and its apprentices: “In a world of global automotive brands, it’s important for our learners to understand the international context of the industry they have chosen to make their career. This new exchange programme will enable apprentices and Academy staff alike to achieve a better understanding of the challenges and opportunities within the automotive arena in Europe. With the Academy’s influence also extending to the USA and Asia, there’s every possibility that this initiative could move further afield in the future.” Continued Winter: “The need for skilled technicians across the world is on the increase and we actively encourage our apprentices to look at broader horizons during their training. Many of them have already learned the phrase ‘Vorsprung durch Gelehrtheit’, quite simply, ‘Advancement through learning.” In the 2010/11 academic year, S&B doubled the number of successful Apprenticeships over the previous year with some 350 apprentices graduating from the Academy. At the same time, achievement levels reached an all-time high with an overall success rate of 85%. For those learners on the Advanced Apprenticeship three-year programme, success rates were even higher, at over 98%. PHOTO CAPTION: As part of their exchange visit, S&B Automotive Academy arranged for the German apprentices to visit Hampshire bus operator, Bluestar, at its Barton Park depot. The students are pictured with S&B’s Andy West (3rd right) and Steve Prewett, Bluestar’s Area Engineering Manager (2nd right). Ends http://www.sandbaa.com
  • Dumfries' Burns statue square work completion in sight

    A council has said any business which feels it has a "legitimate claim" can seek compensation over delayed upgrade works in Dumfries town centre.