Supported self-management is feasible and desirable for people with mild frailty, but care and support planning is more appropriate for individuals with moderate frailty. This section considers how the primary healthcare team can apply a whole person and personalised approach to care and support planning.
As the world population continues to age and the proportion of the elderly suffering from diabetes increases compared to other age groups, the health burden of diabetes in the elderly is set to continue to rise. Practices need to be prepared to cope with a near doubling of the number of elderly people with diabetes over the next twenty years. In this article, we review the particular challenges of managing diabetes in the older patient.
Falls are a relatively common occurrence in older people and can have serious consequences for their health and independence. Many falls are preventable, and the annual review provides an excellent opportunity for practice nurses to consider how long term conditions and medication may 'push' an elderly patient into a fall.
Malnutrition is a cause and consequence of disease, and affects at least 3 million adults in the UK, most of whom live in the community. By helping these vulnerable patients to eat the right types of food rather than use inappropriate supplements, practice nurses can not only help prevent and treat malnutrition, but also save the NHS millions of pounds each year.
Frailty is the gradual loss of inner reserve as a result of the ageing process, leaving a person vulnerable to dramatic, sudden changes in health triggered by apparently small changes or events. Like other long-term conditions, frailty – if not managed – can rapidly result in acute illness and admission to hospital. A better, community-based, preventive approach to managing people with frailty is based on case-finding, followed by care that is appropriate to the individual, whether it is supported self-management, personalised care and support planning, or end-of-life care.
The role of nutrition and exercise in maintaining muscle mass, strength and function pre and post falls and fractures
With an ageing population, strategies that help older adults to maintain their independence for longer are increasingly important.
The walking speed test and the PRISMA 7 questionnaire are two simple, well-validated, frailty-specific tools that have been shown to identify frailty in older people, in particular those attending health clinics or receiving social service assessments
Frailty is a distinctive health state related to the ageing process in which multiple body systems gradually lose their in-built reserves. This means the person is vulnerable to dramatic, sudden changes in health triggered by seemingly small events such as a minor infection or a change in medication.
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The first section of this supplement made the case to consider frailty from the perspective of a long-term condition. This and the next section explore what this means in terms of applying some of the well-developed models for the care of long-term conditions to people who are living with frailty. First, we examine how the highly evidence-based model of supported self-management might be applied to frailty.