Medequip Falls Prevention

With its Wirral Falls Prevention Service proving a success, Medequip, a leading provider of Community Equipment Services (CES), has said it is carefully considering whether to invest in rolling out the model to other areas where it operates CES contracts.

The Wirral Falls Prevention Service was originally commissioned by Public Health with the overall aim to reduce the number of falls experienced by people aged 65 and over in Wirral.

In July 2015, Medequip was awarded the Wirral Falls Prevention Service when it won the Wirral Independence Service contract -the first time a falls prevention service in the UK had been outsourced.

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To deliver the service, Medequip has assembled a small, multidisciplinary team of physiotherapists, occupational therapists, nurses and technical instructors, with the organisation stating the team’s emphasis is firmly on education, training, creating safer environments, prioritising fall-related research and establishing effective policies to reduce risk.

Falls prevention programme

According to Medequip, the team has successfully built and enhanced services and facilities for patients, contributing towards a notable reduction in falls and associated costs for Wirral NHS.

In particular, the group of specialists focuses on falls assessments says the company, including a detailed multi-factorial needs assessment, alongside making use of a clear referral pathway to other agencies, dependent upon the outcome of the assessment.

Trained instructors deliver suitable evidence-based progressive Postural Stability Instruction programmes, with community chair-based programmes for frailer individuals.

In addition, the team also provides training to staff working with vulnerable older people, particularly nursing, residential home staff and carers, to ensure that they have sufficient knowledge and support to undertake initial falls screening assessments.

Medequip Falls Prevention class attended by falls referees

Alongside this work, the Medequip Falls Prevention Service has developed a public awareness education programme notes the company. As part of the education program, the Service has developed a presentation delivering falls risk information, as well as self-management and healthy living advice, to client groups within community settings.

A comprehensive booklet entitled ‘Taking Positive Steps’ has also been written and produced, advising older people on falls risks and how to prevent them.

Positive outcomes amongst patients

According to Medequip, its falls prevention programme has proven effective, with a reported 79 percent of referees to the Medequip Wirral Falls Prevention Service having no further falls at six weeks post-intervention

The Service also highlights that the average number of falls reduced by three per week and 76 percent of referees had improved confidence in Activities of Daily Living, with 90 percent of lower impact chair-based programme attendees showing improved balance.

Additionally, the Falls Prevention Service has played a part in helping fall attendances at Wirral hospitals decrease by 18 percent from 14,800 in 2014/15 to 12,210 in 2017/2018. Furthermore, data from the Trauma and Injury Intelligence Group at Liverpool John Moores University from 2018/2019 (April to December 2018) suggests that the figure is continuing to decrease.

Potential to roll out programme

A priority for the National Health Service, falls cost the NHS more than an estimated £2.3 billion every year & represent 10 percent of the total number of ambulance service call-outs, as well as result in the serious injury or death of more than one in three people aged over 65 annually.

Buoyed by its success of its Wirral Falls Prevention Service, the CES provider is now examining if there is potential to package up its successful programme and roll it out across its contracts nationwide.

The company says: “Medequip is now looking closely at investing in this area of expertise to develop it into a transferable model for other areas where the company operates community equipment services contracts.”

The new service could be another string to its bow, with the integrated CES specialists also providing telecare services – having recently been the first commercial organisation in the TEC industry to achieve a new sector accreditation – alongside adaptations and its retail arm, Manage at Home.

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We respect your privacy BarnettNewsroomNHSSupplier NewsCES,Community Equipment Provider,Community Equipment Services,community services provider,Medequip,Nurses,Occupational Therapist,OT,physiotherapists,Public Health,TEC,technical instructors,Wirral,Wirral Falls Prevention Service,Wirral NHSWith its Wirral Falls Prevention Service proving a success, Medequip, a leading provider of Community Equipment Services (CES), has said it is carefully considering whether to invest in rolling out the model to other areas where it operates CES contracts.The Wirral Falls Prevention Service was originally commissioned by Public...News, views & products for mobility, access and independent living professionals