Lack of support for older patients trying to recover
- 12 Sep
There is a lack of support and rehabilitation for older patients who need help recovering from falls and hospital care, a report suggests.
Such help is normally provided by joint teams of nurses, physiotherapists and social-care staff in England.
But the British Geriatrics Society audit estimated the services in place were meeting only half the demand.
The report warned the shortage was likely to cause delays in discharge from hospital and readmissions.
The group used official NHS data, patient records and individual submissions from NHS trusts and local authorities to compile its audit on intermediate care - the first of its kind.
Many of the users were elderly - the average age was 81 - and had long-term conditions, such as heart disease.
The British Geriatrics Society said the services offered by the teams were essential in helping them stay independent and recover from bouts of injury and illness. But the audit suggested 984 people out of every 100,000 living in the areas looked at had received help from intermediate care services - about half the number who should have.
And it highlighted the fact that bottlenecks were developing where patients were being cared for by the teams for too long.
Guidelines recommend intermediate care should be used for a maximum of six weeks, but between 10% and 20% of patients were under the care of the services for 90 days or longer.
The report also raised concerns about a variation in standards, pointing out just over half of services looked at were commissioned jointly by councils and NHS trusts.
It said the NHS had to get to grips with the issue as such services were essential in meeting the "challenges posed by an ageing population and tighter financial constraints".
Michelle Mitchell, of Age UK, said the findings were a "scandal".
"It is extremely short-sighted of the NHS not to invest more in these services - if someone's discharge is properly supported, the patient will leave hospital safely and sooner and will be less likely to be readmitted.
"These services are vital to help the patient return to their previous level of independence and minimise their long term dependency on care."
Prof David Oliver, the government's older people's director, said the health service should use the audit to improve care.
"I am sure it will be of wide use to the whole sector in shining a spotlight on this previously poorly investigated area," he said.
"I commend the report and hope that is is only the start of the journey."
Source: BBC News
- 01 Sep
Older people need more male carers
Professor Martin Green has said that the government needs to do more to recruit males into front-line adult social care roles, reports the BBC.Prof Green has said that with the increasing number of...
- 25 Aug
Survey finds older people have better quality of life in retirement villages than care homes
Chief executive of Audley Retirement, Nick Sanderson, has said that demand for his form of extra-care housing was so strong he could not build homes fast enough, reports the Guardian.He said: “I...
- 12 Aug
Older people’s Commissioner disappointed by Welsh Government
Sarah Rochira, Wale’s Commissioner for older people has said she is “extremely disappointed” at the response from the Welsh Government to its call for action to protect residents in care homes,...
- 31 Jul
Charity warns of loneliness in older people
The Campaign to End Loneliness charity want a “range of support” for older people to help them fight loneliness, reports the BBC. The charity says that transport and technology are essential to...
- 27 Jul
New housing for older people promised
Members of Kensington and Chelsea’s cabinet have decided to create 150 new homes for older people on the site of a care home that closed down in 2014 due to Legionella, reports Get West...
- 22 Jul
New drug provides hope for older people with Parkinsons
Scientists have found that people taking glitazone pills were less likely to develop Parkinson’s than people taking other diabetes drugs. However, they have cautioned that the drugs could have...
- 15 Jul
Lack in dignity when caring for older people in hospital
In a poll from 2012 it has been found that poor care is most likely to be experienced by people over the age of 80, reports the BBC. Over a third of patients who need help at mealtimes did not...
- 09 Jul
New housing development for older people in Sunderland
A 16.3m housing and care scheme has been opened by the Leader of Sunderland Council, reports Sunderland Echo.The accommodation provides 158 two-bedroom apartments for older people and 17 one bed...
- 07 Jul
Social care cuts leaving older people stranded
Age UK is calling on Chancellor George Osborne to put an end to cuts to social care funding due to the increasing rate the older population is growing, reports the Yorkshire Post. Age UK has...
- 01 Jul
Charity wants priority for older people in housing
Erosh represents organisation providing housing and support to 120,000 older people and has written to new government ministers in opposition, reports Inside Housing.The letter calls on ministers to...
Responding to the DWP Consultation: Housing Benefit Reform - Supported Housing "I thought this briefing was very good and very useful. The presentation was clear, well argued and I always find Michael gives me food for thought even if I don't agree with everything he says. I really like the way he facilitates a discussion in the room and I learn as much from other participants as I do from the presenter which is always good. Right length, right tone." R.P. - Richmond Fellowship