Posted on 09/09/2015

Reducing avoidable admissions to A&E

Reducing avoidable admissions to A&E

For many years the number of people attending Accident and Emergency departments across the UK remained stable at around 14 million per year. However, in 2014/15, research shows this figure has increased dramatically to an astonishing 22.4 million attendees.

According to a report released by the House of Commons in July this year, “The elderly are most likely to attend A&E, and are most likely to arrive by ambulance.” This is hardly surprising when you combine the age-related health issues we face as our bodies begin to slow down with the increased average age of the population.

Whilst attendances at A&E are by their nature unpredictable, or caused by underlying health problems, the review also found that “Dislocation/joint injury/fracture/amputation is the most common category of first diagnosis for A&E patients.” This is something daily living aids can help to prevent – particularly with elderly patients.

Helping older people to prevent falls

When older people are admitted to hospital with a dislocation, joint injury or fracture, it’s usually as a result of a fall – either at home or when out and about.

It’s common as we age, to become a little more unsteady on our feet and for our reactions to slow, making falls more likely. But there are a number of daily living aids available that encourage safe, independent living – giving confidence to older people and peace of mind to carers:

  • Bathroom grab rails – whether you’re looking for a temporary grab rail, a permanent grab rail, or even a stylish grab rail, they will all give you extra support when getting in and out the bath/shower (preventing slips) or when sitting and rising from the toilet.
  • Shower seats – if you find it difficult to stand for a period of time, place a stool or chair inside your shower to perch on as you wash. Alternatively, a wall mounted shower seat is a great permanent fixture which can be folded away easily when not in use.
  • Bath aids – swinging your legs over the side of the bath can be a struggle if you’re living with restricted movement. A bath step with side rail can rise and steady you as you prepare to get in the tub, whilst a bath board gives you the ability to lift your legs over the side with ease.
  • Bed aids – our award winning 2-in-1 bed rail works on both slatted and divan beds to provide support when rising from and getting into bed.
  • Help with reaching – it’s such a simple accident …one minute you’ve dropped something, the next you’ve bent down and lost your balance. A reacher can prevent you from not only bending down, but also from stretching up meaning you’re safe from wobbling over. Additionally, a window pull provides an easier way for you to open and close your windows.
  • Help with carrying – whether you need a home helper trolley to carry your cup of tea between rooms, a rollator with basket for support when walking outdoors, or a shopping trolley to hold the purchases from your latest retail therapy trip, these carrying aids will help ensure you don’t overbalance or fall during day-to-day activities.

Of course, there are many more living aids which are designed to make daily routines easier and safer for those with a disability or age-related illness and we want to raise awareness of them. So if you, or someone you know, could do with a little extra help at home, take a look through our website and get involved with reducing avoidable admissions to A&E departments by doing what you can to prevent falls.

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