Statement by Ann Murray, Falls Programme Manager
"With an ageing population, falls and the consequences of falls are a major and growing concern for older people and health and social care providers alike. However, falls are not an inevitable consequence of growing older. In many cases early identification of risk and timely intervention can prevent falls and fractures and improve outcomes for older people, retaining or restoring independence and reducing health and social care needs. Everyone who works on a regular basis with older people has a role to play in falls prevention. This role can range from providing simple information, advice, to identifying older people at risk, encouraging reporting of falls and signposting/referring to relevant services, to more specialist intervention. Falls prevention is everybody's business".

On behalf of NHS Western Isles, I would like to record our thanks to Jacqui Lunday, Chief Health Professions Officer at the Scottish Government, who provided short term funding for the Falls Project Officer post.  This funding and her unwavering support has enabled us to develop our new Falls Policy which will be invaluable for patients and carers, and continue to help us be “the best at what we do”


Stephen Moore,
Associate Chief Operating Officer, Primary Care, NHS Western Isles

Meeting Dates
4 April, 9.30-11.30, Education Department, Western Isles Hospital

29 August, 9.30-11.30, Education Department, Western Isles Hospital

28 November, 9.30-11.30, Education Department, Western Isles Hospital

 

Key messages

  • Falls: a serious and growing problem.
    Mortality, morbidity and disability associated with falls in older people are considerable. Falls cases are the largest single presentation to the Scottish Ambulance
    Service in over 65s, one of the leading causes of A&E attendance, and are implicated in over 40% of Care Home admissions.

  • Falls are not an inevitable consequence of growing older.
    Falls are nearly always due to the presence of one of more underlying risk factors. A growing evidence base suggests recognising and modifying these risk
    factors is crucial in preventing falls and injuries, including fractures.

  • Up and About: Pathways for the prevention and management of falls and fragility fractures
    The NHS Quality Improvement Scotland resource, Up and About, considers the many and varied aspects of falls and fracture prevention and management
    and places them in the context of a four stage journey of care.

  • The National Falls Programme
    The Programme, which focuses on the community setting, raises the profile of falls and fracture prevention and facilitates sharing of learning, experience
    and knowledge in the falls prevention community in Scotland.

  • Increasing national focus
    There is an increasing awareness of the importance of falls and fracture prevention and management.

  • Falls prevention is everybody's business.
    Everyone who works on a regular basis with older people has a role to play in falls prevention. This role can range from providing simple information,
    advice, to identifying older people at risk, encouraging reporting of falls and signposting/referring to relevant services, to more specialist intervention.
    Ann Murray, Falls Programme Manager 9 May 2011