Follow up care for older people who fall at home

A collaborative pilot project aiming to deliver a more coordinated and responsive approach to the management of older people who fall at home recently commenced.

Community Falls Follow Up commenced in June 2019, enables a coordinated and timely response to the management and prevention of falls in the older person living at home.

The pilot project is a partnership between Brisbane North PHN, Metro North Queensland Ambulance Service and Metro North Hospital and Health Service Community and Oral Health, which formed in response to a review of Metro North Queensland Ambulance data.

The data, gathered from July-December 2018, found ambulance crews responding to nearly 1,200 falls related callouts a month. Of these callouts, approximately half of the patients required transport to an emergency department for acute care assessment and management and half of the patients remained at home.

For the older person remaining at home, follow up care is adhoc and generally relies on the patient initiating contact with their primary care provider or other formal support service.

The pilot project will evaluate a new community falls response pathway during a six month trial, which focuses on older people living in The Prince Charles catchment who have fallen at home, require attendance by Queensland Ambulance Service but are not required to go to hospital.

The patient will be contacted to coordinate appropriate care responses and enact strategies to optimise their health, quality of life and prevent future falls and fall-related injuries.

This care coordination will be facilitated by Team Care Coordination and Community and Oral Health. Team Care Coordination accept referrals and complete home visit assessments with a high priority and clinical nurses work with the relevant GP to coordinate referrals and reduce the risk of further falls.

For further information contact Team Care Coordination on 1800 250 502.