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Transforming Acute Care for Frail Older People: Recognising and Responding to Frailty

Monday 14 January 2019
De Vere West One Conference Centre, London

Transforming Acute Care for Frail Older People: Recognising and Responding to Frailty
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“Acute frailty service redesign is crucial to deliver high quality, sustainable healthcare. Rising patient demand across urgent and emergency care services means increasing admissions impact on patient flow in emergency departments (ED), increased bed occupancy and outlying patients across the hospital with an inevitable negative impact on patient outcomes and experience and increased length of stay. Trusts need support to improve quality, effectiveness and productivity across acute frailty care pathways.” NHS England June 2018

“Frailty is a loss of resilience that means people living with frailty do not bounce back quickly after a physical or mental illness, an accident or other stressful event. In clinical terms, frailty is characterised by loss of biological reserves across multiple organ systems and increasing vulnerability to physiological decompensation after a stressor event. People living with frailty are likely to have a number of different issues or problems, which, taken individually, might not be very serious but when added together have a large impact on health, confidence and wellbeing.

  • The overall prevalence of frailty in people aged over 60 is 14% and it tends to be more common in women (ELSA (2016))
  • 5% of people aged 60-69 have frailty. This rises to 65% in people aged over 90.  In England there are 1.8 million people aged over 60 and 0.8 million people aged over 80 living with frailty 
  • Frailty is linked with poor mobility, difficulty doing everyday activity, or simply ‘slowing up’
  • Frailty results in large increases in the health cost for care settings such as inpatient, outpatient and nursing homes
  • Frailty progresses with age.  As the population of England ages the prevalence and impact of frailty is likely to increase.” NHS England 2018

“By 31st March 2018, over 2.5 million people aged 65 and over living in England had received a frailty assessment, which has led to 950,000 confirmed diagnoses of either moderate or severe frailty.  Around two-thirds of the 320,000 people diagnosed with severe frailty have also received one or more important intervention to help them reduce their risk of falls, side effects of medication, or poor co-ordination of care. Frailty is a recognised long-term condition which mainly affects older people.  It is a condition in which people become less able to recover from difficulties they experience during everyday life. Their increased vulnerability means that even little upsets which may seem quite trivial to someone who does not have frailty, can have a more profound impact on those individuals living with the condition.” NHS England Supporting routine frailty identification and frailty through the GP Contract 2017/2018, Fusion48 2018

“Between 5% and 10% of all people attending emergency departments (ED) and 30% of patients in acute medical units (AMU) are older people with frailty. Identifying frailty must become an embedded part of the acute assessment of people aged over 65 to enable earlier targeted assessment and intervention.” NHS Improvement June 2018

This conference focuses on the important issue of transforming acute care for people with frailty: improving the quality of care for people with frailty and supporting them to stay out of hospital. Redesign of acute frailty services is crucial to meeting increasing demand and improving the quality of life for older people.

This conference will enable you to:

  • Network with colleagues who are working to improve acute care for frail older people
  • Learn from outstanding practice in developing dedicated frailty services
  • Reflect on national developments and learning
  • Improve the way you support people with frailty
  • Develop your skills in identifying and diagnosing frailty
  • Understand how you can improve the response to emergency admissions  
  • Identify key strategies for preventing unnecessary hospital admission
  • Learn from the delivery of a frailty improvement programme in acute care
  • Understand how to improve the training and education of frontline staff to support frail older people on the ward
  • Ensure frailty presenting as falls is effectively identified and managed
  • Improve prescribing and reduce polypharmacy
  • Reflect on how we can improve end of life care and planning for people with advanced frailty
  • Self-assess and reflect on your own practice
  • Gain cpd accreditation points contributing to professional development and revalidation evidence

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