Each year around one third of over 65’s experience one or more falls.
The human cost of falling includes distress, pain, injury, loss of confidence, loss of independence and mortality.
The estimated cost to the NHS is estimated at more than £2.3 billion per year.
Care home residents are three times more likely to fall than elderly frail people living in their own homes.
Injury rates are considerably higher for care home residents with up to 20% of falls resulting in hip fractures.
The North of England (NOE) Falls in Care Homes Programme is a collaboration between the care home sector, NHS England (NHSE), Public Health England, NICE, CQC, ambulance services, the Northern Academic Health Science Networks and social care organisations. The collaborative aims to identify, develop and share resources, tools and examples of good practice designed to prevent or reduce falls in care homes.
The programme is based on the outcomes of a Falls in Care Homes summit 2018 where 130 delegates gathered to hear about local and national best practice initiatives.
The attendees put forward the needs and priorities for the falls work in their regions and they contributed to the development of an action plan for the falls programme going forwards.
If you wish to find out more about the summit then please watch a brief video of the day
The programme has a Collaborative Steering group which meets every month and is made up of members from;
- Care sector organisations
- Ambulance service (NEAS/YAS/NWAS)
- Yorkshire and Humber Academic Health Sciences Network
- North East AHSN
- NHS England/Improvement
- Care Quality Commission
- National Institute of Clinical Excellence
- Local Authority
- Public Health England
The falls programme also has a Virtual Development Team (VDT), a group of stakeholders who have expertise in preventing and managing falls by either working in care homes or acting as a falls lead/champion for their organisation/locality. The VDT helps by:
- Reviewing, critiquing and helping to develop new resources and products.
- Providing guidance and advice on any new developments or proposals from the falls programme.
- Acting as ambassadors to the North of England Falls in Care Homes Programme within their organisation
- To provide their expertise on falls to the larger collaborative group as needed.
The North of England falls programme has worked closely with other colleagues across the country to learn from their experiences and work together to share and develop resources which have impacted positively with care home staff.
The Care Inspectorate has developed a resource pack to help staff in care homes to assess how well falls prevention is being addressed in their service.
The Scottish falls resource was used as a basis for the North of England Falls prevention and management guide and they shared their expertise and lessons learned to help shape the work.
Their website has useful information for all those needing information on falls prevention
The University of Nottingham Division of Rehabilitation, Ageing and Wellbeing and Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trusts have developed training resources for care home staff and they have linked this to a series of Reactto health interventions.
The work was supported by the Academic Health Science Network East Midlands and funded by NHS Improvement. Previous research conducted by Professor Pip Logan at the University of Nottingham was used to provide the basis for the development of these resources. They have worked with the North of England programme to share their learning.
The North of England falls poster is also inspired by the Nottingham Purple Poster developed by staff for their local care homes, this was showcased at the 2018 falls summit.
Doncaster CCG have also worked on falls interventions and their falls poster was well received by care home staff. It was agreed that this would be developed as part of the North of England falls programme into a pocket guide that would be made available to all regional care home staff. The pocket guide is available on this site.