Implementing optimal falls risk assessment in memory services

Overview

Memory services or memory clinics have been set up to provide specialist assessment for diagnosing, treating and supporting people with dementia. Memory clinics are run by health care and social care professionals. People attending a memory clinic are offered a full assessment to confirm – or rule out – the diagnosis of dementia. This can include memory tests, brain scans, blood tests and physical tests.

NICE Clinical Guidance (CG161) recommends older people in contact with healthcare professionals should be routinely asked about whether they have experienced a fall in the past year. This project focuses on ensuring that falls risk assessments in memory services are optimal. Effective treatments are available to help prevent falls, such as strength and balancing training, and timely referral to falls prevention services is important for people with dementia, who may have a high risk of falling.

Why are we focussing on falls prevention?

  • Falls prevention services are evidence-based, cost-effective and prevent hospital admission.
  • People with dementia have a high risk of falls
  • Walking and balance issues can occur in the early stages of dementia
  • NICE Clinical Guidance (CG161) recommends older people in contact with healthcare professionals should be asked routinely about falls in the past year.

Resource