Health team tackles tripping risk

NHS MEETING ... the falls prevention team members, front, left to right, staff nurse Lisa Wren and nursing assistant Rachel Hamilton; back, left to right, falls specialist practitioner and physiotherapist Dean Metz, and nursing assistant Anne Ray.
NHS MEETING ... the falls prevention team members, front, left to right, staff nurse Lisa Wren and nursing assistant Rachel Hamilton; back, left to right, falls specialist practitioner and physiotherapist Dean Metz, and nursing assistant Anne Ray.

HEALTH staff in South Tyneside are being lined up to highlight how they are helping older people avoid being hurt.

The falls prevention team, based at South Tyneside District Hospital in South Shields – which was launched last year – is made up of doctors, nurses, physiotherapists and healthcare assistant.

On Thursday, members will explain how they’re reducing the number of falls among the elderly, at South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust’s Medicine for Members meeting.

Falls specialist practitioner and physiotherapist Dean Metz and service manager Pam Vickers will explain how patients who have tripped are seen in a ‘one-stop’ clinic.

They have all the necessary tests, such as blood pressure and fracture risk, and are offered joint assessments by a nurse and a physiotherapist to identify possible contributory factors to their falls and the best way to help them. Depending on their individual needs, they are then given physiotherapy and a tailored exercise programme.

Mr Metz said: “In many other areas, each health professional does an assessment and patients can become tired of repeating the same information and sometimes details can be left out when answering the next clinician’s questions.

“We felt that joint, concurrent assessment would give patients the best experience and that it was the best way of ensuring no information was lost or missed.”

The Medicine for Members meeting will be held at 2.30pm at the Harton Lane hospital’s Lecture Theatre inside the Education Centre, with refreshments available from 2pm.

Anyone wishing to attend is asked to contact the membership line on 202 4121.

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