Concern over high number of older people admitted after falls
Around 350,000 older people are admitted to hospital every year as a result of a fall, a charity has warned.
Age UK said the number of people over the age of 60 who are treated in hospital in England because of falling over is a “real concern”.
About 9,000 older people die every year as the result of a fall and injuries from falls are one of the leading causes of death for over-75s, the charity said.
Launching it’s Falls Awareness Week, Age UK said the impact of a fall can be life-changing for an older person and can leave them feeling isolated and reluctant to leave home.
“With the older population projected to rise by nearly 50% in the next 20 years, the number of people over 60 experiencing falls to the extent where they are receiving hospital treatment is a real concern,” said charity director general Michelle Mitchell.
“Falls in later life are often dismissed as an inevitable part of growing older, however the reality is that there is something we can all do prevent a fall and increase our chances of living a healthy and independent life for as long as possible.
“Prevention is better than cure and more should be done to support and promote this.”
On Friday, figures from the Health and Social Care Information Centre revealed that between 2012 and 2013 more than 410,000 people of all ages were admitted to hospitals across England as a result of a fall - a 13.4% decline from 470,000 the previous year.
Almost three-quarters of females admitted were over the age of 65, compared with around half of men, the HSCIC said.
Last week health bosses were urged to take action to prevent elderly people falling over in hospital after it emerged that 90 patients died in one year because of such accidents.
Doctors and nurses must create a plan to reduce at-risk patients’ likelihood of falling while being cared for in an NHS organisation, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence said.
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