Recent Submissions

  • Impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on hospital episodes for falls and fractures associated with new-onset disability and frailty in England: A national cohort study

    Morriss, Richard K. (2024)
    BACKGROUND: Older people with frailty are at risk of harm from immobility or isolation, yet data about how COVID-19 lockdowns affected them are limited. Falls and fractures are easily measurable adverse outcomes correlated with frailty. We investigated whether English hospital admission rates for falls and fractures varied from the expected trajectory during the COVID-19 pandemic, and how these varied by frailty status. METHODS: NHS England Hospital Episode Statistics Admitted Patient Care data were analysed for observed versus predicted outcome rates for 24 January 2020 to 31 December 2021. An auto-regressive integrated moving average time-series model was trained using falls and fracture incidence data from 2013 to 2018 and validated using data from 2019. Models included national and age-, sex- and region-stratified forecasts. Outcome measures were hospital admissions for falls, fractures, and falls and fractures combined. Frailty was defined using the Hospital Frailty Risk Score. RESULTS: 144,148,915 pre-pandemic hospital admissions were compared with 42,267,318 admissions after pandemic onset. For the whole population, falls and fracture rates were below predicted for the first period of national lockdown, followed by a rapid return to rates close to predicted. Thereafter, rates followed expected trends. For people living with frailty, however, falls and fractures increased above expected rates during periods of national lockdown and remained elevated throughout the study period. Effects of frailty were independent of age. CONCLUSIONS: People living with frailty experienced increased fall and fracture rates above expected during and following periods of national lockdown. These remained persistently elevated throughout the study period.
  • Qualitative study exploring factors affecting the implementation of a vocational rehabilitation intervention in the UK major trauma pathway

    Patel, Priya; das Nair, Roshan (2022)
    OBJECTIVES: This study aimed to: (1) understand the context for delivering a trauma vocational rehabilitation (VR) intervention; (2) identify potential barriers and enablers to the implementation of a VR intervention post-trauma. DESIGN: Qualitative study. Data were collected in person or via phone using different methods: 38 semistructured interviews, 11 informal 'walk-through care pathways' interviews, 5 focus groups (n=25), 5 codesign workshops (n=43). Data were thematically analysed using the framework approach, informed by the Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research. SETTING: Stakeholders recruited across five UK major trauma networks. PARTICIPANTS: A variety of stakeholders were recruited (n=117) including trauma survivors, rehabilitation physicians, therapists, psychologists, trauma coordinators and general practitioners. We recruited 32 service users (trauma survivors or carers) and 85 service providers. RESULTS: There were several issues associated with implementing a trauma VR intervention including: culture within healthcare/employing organisations; extent to which healthcare systems were networked with other organisations; poor transition between different organisations; failure to recognise VR as a priority; external policies and funding. Some barriers were typical implementation issues (eg, funding, policies, openness to change). This study further highlighted the challenges associated with implementing a complex intervention like VR (eg, inadequate networking/communication, poor service provision, perceived VR priority). Our intervention was developed to overcome these barriers through adapting a therapist training package, and by providing early contact with patient/employer, a psychological component alongside occupational therapy, case coordination/central point of contact, and support crossing sector boundaries (eg, between health/employment/welfare). CONCLUSIONS: Findings informed the implementation of our VR intervention within the complex trauma pathway. Although we understand how to embed it within this context, the success of its implementation needs to be measured as part of a process evaluation in a future trial.
  • Efficacy of hydrogels for repair of traumatic spinal cord injuries: A systematic review and meta-analysis

    Shokraneh, Farhad (2021)
    Hydrogels have been used as promising biomaterials for regeneration and control of pathophysiological events after traumatic spinal cord injuries (TSCI). However, no systematic comparison was conducted to show the effect of hydrogels on pathophysiological events. This study was designed to address this issue and evaluate the regenerative potential of hydrogels after TSCI. From 2857 records found in MEDLINE and EMBASE databases (April 23, 2021), 49 articles were included based on our inclusion/exclusion criteria. All studies discussing the effect of hydrogels on at least one of the main pathophysiological events after TSCI, including inflammation, axon growth, remyelination, glial scar formation, cavity size, and locomotor functional recovery were included. For statistical analysis, we used mean difference with 95% confidence intervals for locomotor functional recovery. The results showed that both natural and synthetic hydrogels could reduce the inflammatory response, hinder glial scar formation, and promote axon growth and vascularization. Also, the meta-analysis of the BBB score showed that using the hydrogels can lead to locomotor functional recovery. It was found that hydrogels are more efficient when used in transection and hemisection injuries (SMD: 1.89; 95% CI: 1.26, 2.52; P < .00001) compared to other injury models. The pre-formed implanted hydrogels (SMD: 1.79; 95% CI: 1.24, 2.34; P < .00001) found to be more effective compared to injection (SMD: 1.58; 95% CI: 0.64, 2.52; P = 0.0009). In conclusion, based on the available evidence, it was concluded that hydrogel composition as well as implantation method are dominant factors affecting tissue regeneration after TSCI and should be chosen according to the injury model in animal studies.
  • Factors affecting the delivery and acceptability of the ROWTATE telehealth vocational rehabilitation intervention for traumatic injury survivors: A mixed-methods study

    Patel, Priya (2021)
    Background: Returning to work after traumatic injury can be problematic. We developed a vocational telerehabilitation (VR) intervention for trauma survivors, delivered by trained occupational therapists (OTs) and clinical psychologists (CPs), and explored factors affecting delivery and acceptability in a feasibility study. Methods: Surveys pre- (5 OTs, 2 CPs) and post-training (3 OTs, 1 CP); interviews pre- (5 OTs, 2 CPs) and post-intervention (4 trauma survivors, 4 OTs, 2 CPs). Mean survey scores for 14 theoretical domains identified telerehabilitation barriers (score ≤ 3.5) and facilitators (score ≥ 5). Interviews were transcribed and thematically analysed. Results: Surveys: pre-training, the only barrier was therapists’ intentions to use telerehabilitation (mean = 3.40 ± 0.23), post-training, 13/14 domains were facilitators. Interviews: barriers/facilitators included environmental context/resources (e.g., technology, patient engagement, privacy/disruptions, travel and access); beliefs about capabilities (e.g., building rapport, complex assessments, knowledge/confidence, third-party feedback and communication style); optimism (e.g., impossible assessments, novel working methods, perceived importance and patient/therapist reluctance) and social/professional role/identity (e.g., therapeutic methods). Training and experience of intervention delivery addressed some barriers and increased facilitators. The intervention was acceptable to trauma survivors and therapists. Conclusion: Despite training and experience in intervention delivery, some barriers remained. Providing some face-to-face delivery where necessary may address certain barriers, but strategies are required to address other barriers.
  • Mental health and other factors associated with work productivity after injury in the UK: multicentre cohort study

    Morriss, Richard K. (2021)
    Introduction Mental health conditions are a major contributor to productivity loss and are common after injury. This study quantifies postinjury productivity loss and its association with preinjury and postinjury mental health, injury, demographic, health, social and other factors.Methods Multicentre, longitudinal study recruiting hospitalised employed individuals aged 16–69 years with unintentional injuries, followed up at 1, 2, 4 and 12 months. Participants completed questionnaires on injury, demographic factors, health (including mental health), social factors, other factors and on-the-job productivity upon return to work (RTW). ORs were estimated for above median productivity loss using random effects logistic regression.Results 217 adults had made an RTW at 2, 4 or 12 months after injury: 29% at 2 months, 66% at 4 months and 83% at 12 months. Productivity loss reduced over time: 3.3% of working time at 2 months, 1.7% at 4 months, 1% at 12 months. Significantly higher productivity loss was associated with preinjury psychiatric conditions (OR 21.40, 95% CI 3.50 to 130.78) and post-traumatic stress avoidance symptoms at 1 month (OR for 1-unit increase in score 1.15, 95% CI 1.07 to 1.22). Significantly lower productivity loss was associated with male gender (OR 0.32, 95% CI 0.14 to 0.74), upper and lower limb injuries (vs other body regions, OR 0.15, 95% CI 0.03 to 0.81) and sports injuries (vs home, OR 0.18, 95% CI 0.04 to 0.78). Preinjury psychiatric conditions and gender remained significant in analysis of multiply imputed data.Conclusions Unintentional injury results in substantial productivity loss. Females, those with preinjury psychiatric conditions and those with post-traumatic stress avoidance symptoms experience greater productivity loss and may require additional support to enable successful RTW.No data are available.
  • Optimal management of older people with frailty non-weight bearing after lower limb fracture: a scoping review

    Godfrey, Deborah (2021)
    BACKGROUND: Patients with lower limb fractures who are non-weight bearing are at risk of the complications of the associated immobility and disability, particularly people with frailty, but there is lack of clarity about what constitutes optimal care for such patients. A scoping literature review was conducted to explore what evidence is available for the management of this patient group. METHOD(S): MEDLINE (PubMed) CINAHL, EMBASE and the Cochrane databases of published literature and the HMIC and SIGLE sites for grey literature were searched for primary research studies and expert reports, using an iterative approach initially including the key term 'non-weight bearing'. All study types were included. Analysis was by narrative synthesis. RESULT(S): No papers were identified from a search using the key phrase 'non-weight bearing'. With this term removed, 11 indirectly relevant articles on lower limb fractures were retrieved from the searches of the electronic databases comprising three observational studies, five non-systematic review articles, a systematic review, an opinion piece and a survey of expert opinion that had relevance to restricted weight bearing patients. The observational studies indicated depression, cognition and nutrition affect outcome and hence have indirect relevance to management. The non-systematic reviews articles emphasised the importance of maintaining strength and range of movement during immobilisation and advised an orthogeriatric model of care. Fourteen UK and 97 non-UK guidelines relevant to fragility fractures, falls and osteoporosis management were found in the grey literature, but none made specific recommendations regarding the management of any period of non-weight bearing. DISCUSSION: These findings provide a summary of the evidence base that can be used in the development of a clinical guideline for these patients but is not sufficient. We propose that, a guideline should be developed for these patients using an expert consensus process. Copyright © The Author(s) 2021. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the British Geriatrics Society. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email:
  • Optimal care for the management of older people non-weight bearing after lower limb fracture: a consensus study

    Godfrey, Deborah (2021)
    Background: Older people who are non-weight-bearing after a lower limb fracture are at risk of poor outcomes but there are no clinical guidelines for this group of patients. Given the paucity of the research evidence base, we conducted a consensus exercise to ascertain expert opinion about the management of this group. Methods: A three-round e-Delphi technique was planned to use the online JISC survey tool with a multidisciplinary panel of health professionals. Panellists were invited by email via professional organisations and UK NHS Trusts. The initial statements for this study were prepared by the authors based upon the findings of their scoping review. Consensus required >/= 70% agreement with statements. Results: Only 2 survey rounds were required. Ninety panellists, representing seven clinical disciplines, reached consensus for 24 statements about general issues (osteoporosis detection and management, falls risk reduction and nutrition) and specific non-weight bearing issues (such as the need for activity to be promoted during this period). Conclusions: These findings can be used in the generation of a clinical guideline for this group of patients.
  • Vocational rehabilitation to enhance return to work after trauma (ROWTATE): protocol for a non-randomised single-arm mixed-methods feasibility study

    das Nair, Roshan; Morriss, Richard K. (2021)
    BACKGROUNDTraumatic injuries are common amongst working-age adults. Survivors often experience physical and psychological problems, reduced quality of life and difficulty returning to work. Vocational rehabilitation improves work outcomes for a range of conditions but evidence of effectiveness for those with traumatic injuries is lacking. This study assesses feasibility of delivering a vocational rehabilitation intervention to enhance return to work and improve quality of life and wellbeing in people with at least moderate trauma to inform design of a definitive randomised controlled trial (RCT).METHODSNon-randomised, single-arm, multi-centre mixed-methods feasibility study with nested case studies and qualitative study. The case studies comprise interviews, observations of clinical contacts and review of clinical records. The qualitative study comprises interviews and/or focus groups. Participants will be recruited from two UK major trauma centres. Participants will comprise 40 patients aged 16-69 with an injury severity score of > 8 who will receive the intervention and complete questionnaires. Interviews will be conducted with 10 patients and their occupational therapists (OTs), clinical psychologists (CPs), employers and commissioners of rehabilitation services. Fidelity will be assessed in up to six patients by observations of OT and CP-patient contacts, review of patient records and intervention case report forms. OT and CP training will be evaluated using questionnaires and competence to deliver the intervention assessed using a team objective structured clinical examination and written task. Patients participating in and those declining participation in the study will be invited to take part in interviews/focus groups to explore barriers and facilitators to recruitment and retention. Outcomes include recruitment and retention rates, intervention fidelity, OT and CP competence to deliver the intervention, experiences of delivering or receiving the intervention and factors likely to influence definitive trial delivery.DISCUSSIONEffective vocational rehabilitation interventions to enhance return to work amongst trauma patients are urgently needed because return to work is often delayed, with detrimental effects on health, financial stability, healthcare resource use and wider society. This protocol describes a feasibility study delivering a complex intervention to enhance return to work in those with at least moderate trauma.TRIAL REGISTRATIONISRCTN: 74668529 . Prospectively registered on 23 January 20.
  • Early general hypothermia improves motor function after spinal cord injury in rats; a systematic review and meta-analysis

    Shokraneh, Farhad (2020)
    IntroductionThere is still controversy about the effect of early hypothermia on the outcome of spinal cord injury (SCI). The aim of this review article is to investigate the effect of local or general hypothermia on improving the locomotion after traumatic SCI.MethodsElectronic databases (Medline and Embase) were searched from inception until May 7, 2018. Two independent reviewers screened and summarized the relevant experimental studies on hypothermia efficacy in traumatic SCI. The data were analyzed and the findings were presented as pooled standardized mean difference (SMD) and 95% confidence interval (95% CI).Results20 papers containing 30 separate experiments were included in meta-analysis. The onset of hypothermia varied between 0 and 240 minutes after SCI. Administration of hypothermia has a positive effect on locomotion following SCI (SMD=0.56 95% CI: 0.18-0.95, p=0.004). Subgroup analysis showed that general hypothermia improves locomotion recovery (SMD =0.89, 95% CI: 0.42 to 1.36; p <0.0001), while local hypothermia does not have a significant effect on motor recovery (SMD=0.20, 95 % CI: -0.36-0.76, p=0.478). In addition, general hypothermia was found to affect motor recovery only if its duration was between 2 and 8 hours (SMD=0.89; p<0.0001) and the target temperature for induction of hypothermia was between 32 and 35° C (SMD=0.83; p<0.0001).ConclusionWe found that general hypothermia improves locomotion after SCI in rats. Duration of induction and the target temperature are two essential considerations for general therapeutic hypothermia.
  • A comparison of the nationally important infection prevention and control documents in NHS England and NHS Scotland

    Robinson, Jude (2020)
    Background: The devolution of health to Scotland in 1999, led for the first time in the NHS, to different priorities and success indicators for infection prevention and control (IPC). This project sought to understand, compare and evaluate the national IPC priorities and available indicators of success. Aim: To identify the national IPC priorities alongside national indicators of success. Methods: Critical analysis of nationally produced documents and publicly available infection-related data up to March 2018. Findings: For both NHS Scotland and England the local and national IPC priorities are evidenced by: (1) people being cared for in an IPC-safe environment; (2) staff following IPC-safe procedures; and (3) organisations continuously striving not just to attain standards, but to improve on them. If national agencies that produce data were also charged with using a Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI) model, then there would be further opportunities to detect and improve on successes. © The Author(s) 2020.
  • Evaluation of an alcohol-related brain injury (ARBI) diagnostic service pilot

    Jawahar, Kaanthan; Katshu, Mohammad Z.; Ellison, James M. A.; Rhinds, David (2020)
    Objectives/Aims To pilot an ARBI diagnostic service within a community substance misuse team (delivered in partnership with the NHS by a 3rd sector organisation). Background Alcohol-related brain injury (ARBI) is an umbrella term encompassing alcohol-related cognitive impairment, alcohol-related ‘dementias’, Wernicke’s encephalopathy and Korsakoff’s syndrome. It is the result of prolonged and harmful alcohol misuse, developing through direct neuronal damage from alcohol as well as chronic deficient states of vitamin B1 (thiamine). Anecdotally, it is felt that those affected by ARBI can struggle to access the necessary expertise for diagnosis and ongoing management. Methods A widespread stakeholder engagement process led to the development of a standard operating procedure for the pilot service, utilising a process mapping technique. The service received referrals between September 2018 and January 2019. During this time, assessments were carried out in line with the standard operating procedure by the authors. Referrers were also asked to complete a questionnaire for their views on the service. Results Referrals were received from several sources within the host third sector organisation. Heterogeneity was seen in presentations and diagnoses made were not limited to ARBI. Referrers spoke highly of the service and how it had positively benefitted their patients going forwards, providing clarity around diagnoses and thus being able to access appropriate support going forwards. There was a clear need demonstrated for such a service. Conclusions Anecdotally patients with ARBI are viewed as a marginalised group who struggle to access the necessary expertise for diagnosis and ongoing management. This service pilot was successful in filling that gap. Work is ongoing through discussions with local NHS healthcare system partners, including acute trusts, commissioners, mental health, the 3rd sector and Social Care, to devise a more sustainable pathway based upon this pilot service. At present, this is taking the form of an acute hospital ‘in-reach’ pathway to be trialled in an acute trust. This will provide the basis of a business case for a pathway across the STP footprint.
  • Are cervical collars effective and safe in prehospital spinal cord injury management?

    Hodgett, Rachel (2020)
    Background: In the UK, around 500?600 people a year sustain traumatic injuries to the spinal cord, half of which involve the cervical spine. UK ambulance guidelines stipulate that if immobilisation is indicated, the entire spine should be immobilised using an orthopaedic scoop stretcher, head restraints and a rigid cervical collar. However, the use of cervical collars is being debated in the paramedic profession. Although they were originally considered harmless and used as a precautionary measure, an increasing amount of evidence suggests otherwise and it is argued that they can do more harm than good. Therefore, it is debatable whether using them is consistent with the principles of patient safety and evidence-based practice. Aim: A literature review was carried out to comprehensively examine research surrounding the adverse effects of cervical collars and the range of movement they allow to gain a comprehensive understanding of their efficacy. Methods: The EBSCOhost Health Science Research database was searched. Seven articles were found and chosen for inclusion in the literature review. Results: Two themes were identified regarding cervical collars: adverse effects and range of movement. Conclusion: Evidence suggests that cervical collars can cause more harm than good, and UK ambulance guidelines for spinal immobilisation should be reconsidered.
  • A randomised controlled trial of an exercise intervention promoting activity, independence and stability in older adults with mild cognitive impairment and early dementia (PrAISED) - A Protocol

    Smith, Helen; das Nair, Roshan (2019)
    BACKGROUND: People with dementia progressively lose cognitive and functional abilities. Interventions promoting exercise and activity may slow decline. We developed a novel intervention to promote activity and independence and prevent falls in people with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) or early dementia. We successfully undertook a feasibility randomised controlled trial (RCT) to refine the intervention and research delivery. We are now delivering a multi-centred RCT to evaluate its clinical and cost-effectiveness. METHODS: We will recruit 368 people with MCI or early dementia (Montreal Cognitive Assessment score 13-25) and a family member or carer from memory assessment clinics, other community health or social care venues or an online register (the National Institute for Health Research Join Dementia Research). Participants will be randomised to an individually tailored activity and exercise programme delivered using motivational theory to promote adherence and continued engagement, with up to 50 supervised sessions over one year, or a brief falls prevention assessment (control). The intervention will be delivered in participants' homes by trained physiotherapists, occupational therapists and therapy assistants. We will measure disabilities in activities of daily living, physical activity, balance, cognition, mood, quality of life, falls, carer strain and healthcare and social care use. We will use a mixed methods approach to conduct a process evaluation to assess staff training and delivery of the intervention, and to identify individual- and context-level mechanisms affecting intervention engagement and activity maintenance. We will undertake a health economic evaluation to determine if the intervention is cost-effective. DISCUSSION: We describe the protocol for a multi-centre RCT that will evaluate the clinical and cost-effectiveness of a therapy programme designed to promote activity and independence amongst people living with dementia. TRIAL REGISTRATION: ISRCTN, ISRCTN15320670. Registered on 4 September 2018.
  • Clinical and ethical challenges in undertaking LIMPRINT in vulnerable populations

    Bussey, Rachel; Whiston, Siobhan (2019)
    Background and Study Objective: To estimate the prevalence of chronic edema (CO) and wounds within two vulnerable populations, a male high security prison in the East Midlands (United Kingdom) and residential and nursing homes in the United Kingdom and Australia. Methods and Results: Methods for screening for CO and wounds were adapted from the main LIMPRINT methodology. Prison Population: In total, 195 inmates were recruited with 22 (11%) having CO. While the majority were white Caucasian (156/83.4%) a further 20 (10.7%) were dark skinned with 11 (5.95%) from other minority populations. Comorbidities included 123 (63%) smokers, 22 (11%) alcohol dependant, 60 (31%) with mental health problems, and 35 (18%) a history of self-harm. Only three had a current wound with 30 (16%) having had a traumatic stab wound. Residential and Nursing Homes (United Kingdom and Australia): In the United Kingdom, the total population available for inclusion was 189 with only 137 (73%) recruited. Seventy-two of the 137 (52%) suffered from CO and a further 16 (23%) had a history of cellulitis. Results from the Australian residential care facilities have been published in full. In summary, of the 37 participants 20 (54%) experienced CO with 25 (68%) having comorbidities and 11 (30%) having a concurrent wound. Conclusion: Obtaining an accurate picture of the prevalence and impact of CO in vulnerable populations is extremely challenging due to issues of access and consent. Lack of reliable data for these populations will contribute to poor service provision.
  • Clinical and cost effectiveness of memory rehabilitation following traumatic brain injury: a pragmatic cluster randomized controlled trial

    das Nair, Roshan (2019)
    Objective: To evaluate the clinical and cost effectiveness of a group-based memory rehabilitation programme for people with traumatic brain injury. Design: Multicentre, pragmatic, observer-blinded, randomized controlled trial in England. Setting: Community. Participants: People with memory problems following traumatic brain injury, aged 18–69 years, able to travel to group sessions, communicate in English, and give consent. Interventions: A total of 10 weekly group sessions of manualized memory rehabilitation plus usual care (intervention) vs. usual care alone (control). Main measures: The primary outcome was the patient-reported Everyday Memory Questionnaire (EMQ-p) at six months post randomization. Secondary outcomes were assessed at 6 and 12 months post randomization. Results: We randomized 328 participants. There were no clinically important differences in the primary outcome between arms at six-month follow-up (mean EMQ-p score: 38.8 (SD 26.1) in intervention and 44.1 (SD 24.6) in control arms, adjusted difference in means: –2.1, 95% confidence interval (CI): –6.7 to 2.5, p = 0.37) or 12-month follow-up. Objectively assessed memory ability favoured the memory rehabilitation arm at the 6-month, but not at the 12-month outcome. There were no between-arm differences in mood, experience of brain injury, or relative/friend assessment of patient’s everyday memory outcomes, but goal attainment scores favoured the memory rehabilitation arm at both outcome time points. Health economic analyses suggested that the intervention was unlikely to be cost effective. No safety concerns were raised. Conclusion: This memory rehabilitation programme did not lead to reduced forgetting in daily life for a heterogeneous sample of people with traumatic brain injury. Further research will need to examine who benefits most from such interventions. © The Author(s) 2019.
  • Axonal degeneration and demyelination following traumatic spinal cord injury: A systematic review and meta-analysis

    Shokraneh, Farhad (2019)
    The pathophysiology of spinal cord injury (SCI) related processes of axonal degeneration and demyelination are poorly understood. The present systematic review and meta-analysis were performed such to establish quantitative results of animal studies regarding the role of injury severity, SCI models and level of injury on the pathophysiology of axon and myelin sheath degeneration. 39 related articles were included in the analysis. The compiled data showed that the total number of axons, number of myelinated axons, myelin sheath thickness, axonal conduction velocity, and internode length steadily decreased as time elapsed from the injury (Pfor trend<0.0001). The rate of axonal retrograde degeneration was affected by SCI model and severity of the injury. Axonal degeneration was higher in injuries of the thoracic region. The SCI model and the site of the injury also affected axonal retrograde degeneration. The number of myelinated axons in the caudal region of the injury was significantly higher than the lesion site and the rostral region. The findings of the present meta-analysis show that the pathophysiology of axons and myelin sheath differ in various phases of SCI and are affected by multiple factors related to the injury. Copyright © 2019 Elsevier B.V.
  • Perspectives of healthcare professionals in England on falls interventions for people with dementia: a qualitative interview study

    Beck, Lyndsay (2019)
    Objective To explore the experiences of healthcare professionals working in falls prevention and memory assessment services in providing assessments and interventions for falls risk reduction in people with dementia.Design This is a qualitative study using 19 semistructured interviews. Interviews were analysed through thematic analysis.Setting Community-based falls and memory assessment services in the East Midlands, UK.Participants Nurses (n=10), physiotherapists (n=5), occupational therapists (n=3) and a psychiatrist (n=1).Results Three substantive themes were identified: challenges posed by dementia, adaptations to make falls prevention appropriate for people with dementia and organisational barriers. Patients’ poor recall, planning and increased behavioural risk associated with dementia were key problems. Healthcare professionals provided many suggestions on how to overcome these challenges, such as adapting exercise interventions by using more visual aids. Problems associated with cognitive impairment created a need for additional support, for instance longer interventions, and supervision by support workers, to enable effective intervention, yet limited resources meant this was not always achievable. Communication between mental and physical health teams could be ineffective, as services were organised as separate entities, creating a reliance on third parties to be intermediaries. Structural and organisational factors made it difficult to deliver optimal falls prevention for people living with dementia.Conclusions Healthcare professionals experience challenges in providing falls prevention to people with dementia at the individual and organisational levels. Interventions can be adapted for people with dementia, but this requires additional resources and improved integration of services. Future research is needed to develop and test the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of such services.
  • Management of a patient with a coccyx ulcer in a nursing home

    Anders, Tessa (2017)
    Older people are at increased risk of developing pressure ulcers. They are also more likely to have comorbidities that increase the challenges of managing such a wound. This article reviews a complex case in which a 77-year-old woman with dementia and incontinence developed an ulcer on her coccyx. The ulcer became infected several times and proved resistant to several types of treatment before negative pressure wound therapy with Nanova was instigated.
  • Improved healing rates for simple venous leg ulcers in the community setting

    Wilson, Annabel (2018)
    Background: The need for improvements in leg ulcer management has finally been recognised, following Guest et al (2015) Burden of wounds study and the launch of the new best practice statement from Wounds UK. The study highlighted unsafe practice taking place within primary care and the need for a change in the training and education of leg ulcer management across the National Health Service (NHS). Aims: Prior to making any improvements within the Trust, data showed the average healing rate across the Trust to be a disappointing 41%, further reflecting the data found in Guest et al study. The goal set within the Trust for healing simple venous leg ulcers is a 75% healing rate within 20 weeks. In order to improve practice, patient outcomes and achieve the goal set within the Trust, the Tissue Viability team implemented 6 key steps within the Trust. The 6 key steps comprise of an online interactive leg ulcer theory training package, Video’s demonstrating how to perform compression bandaging and an ABPI Doppler assessment, Updated Leg ulcer handbook, Algorithm, Updated assessment and care plan templates and Leg Ulcer clinic co-ordinator meetings have been commenced. Method: The data collected for the healing rates within the Trust will validate whether the changes implemented have been successful in overall improving practice and patient outcomes. Results: The latest data shows 90 -100% healing rate since the training has been embedded into practice alongside a quality improvement plan. Conclusions: The training is already demonstrating improvements in clinical practice, patient outcomes and a better use of resources. This will result in cost savings for the NHS and free up healthcare professionals valuable time.
  • Thinking falls - taking action: A guide to action for falls prevention

    Robertson, Kate; Challands, Linda (2010)
    Clinical guidelines and research papers help clinicians measure and understand the risk of falling in their older clients but very few provide the assessor with recommendations as to which intervention they can use to reduce the risk of a fall. The Guide to Action for Falls Prevention tool (GtA) was developed to help professionals from a broad range of organisations to recognise factors that might increase falls risk and know which actions to take to lessen that risk. Twenty four professionals tested the GtA in a clinical setting and found it quick (15 mins) and easy to complete. The GtA needs further evaluation to test whether it is a practical way of delivering a falls prevention intervention.

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