Dr Adam Gordon is Consultant and Honorary Associate Professor in Medicine of Older People at Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust. He also edits this blog…..
Last week I was invited to present some outputs from the Medical Crises in Older People programme to a Comprehensive Local Research Network (CLRN) Meeting in Leicester. It was one of the most mixed audiences I have ever presented to. There were researchers, nurses, care home managers, consultant neurologists and members of the public. Many of the members of the public were older. A couple had hearing impairment. One couldn’t see.
I had one hour to present three year’s worth of research. Complex research. Nuanced research. Research of which I was very proud…..and suddenly, faced by this audience, I was filled with dread at the prospect of having to do so. Continue reading
Dr Adam Gordon is a Consultant and Honorary Associate Professor in Medicine for Older People at Nottingham University Hospitals. He is Digital Media Editor of Age and Ageing.
The BGS blog has been live for a month now. We had our hard launch, with an article describing why we need a blog, in the BGS newsletter last week.
We hope that this will go on to be a core resource for those interested in the care of frail older people, both within the UK and internationally. Already we’ve seen commentary from geriatricians of all grades on issues ranging from career choices to the Francis report. We welcome submissions both from BGS members and non-members who share our interest in helping to deliver the best health and social care for frail older people – please get in touch if you want to contribute. Continue reading
Innovative approach to care of the older patients celebrated in the Daily Mail
Following the Francis Report we ought to be taking every opportunity to highlight excellence and quality in Health Care of Older People being delivered across many NHS trusts. This article from the Daily Mail reports an innovative scheme from Nottingham. It is an example of the sort of thing we ought to celebrate. Click on the hyperlink above – I’ll let the article speak for itself.
An interesting feature in the last five minutes of this morning’s Today programme on Radio 4 spoke about the Design Council’s innovation competition around “Living Well with Dementia”, the winners of which are announced today.
The five winners are summarised on the Design Council website and range from the immediately pragmatic to more esoteric solutions. All challenge the assumptions that little can be done to change the status quo for dementia sufferers and have potential to tackle day to day frustrations head on. They include:
- An online service that matches family carers with locally available flexible work.
- A carers’ social networking site that assists families to co-ordinate informal care for their relative with dementia around busy work and social lives.
- A service providing “dementia dogs” for companionship and as a link to the community.
- A GPS wristband to help reassure carers to help locate patients with dementia.
- A fragrance release system to help stimulate appetite at mealtimes in care settings.
A live lecture, showcasing the projects, will take place online this afternoon from 1pm. An exhibition showcasing the designs is being held at the Design Council, 34 Bow Street, London tomorrow, Friday 27th April 2012.
The Bupa Foundation’s Philip-Poole Wilson Seed Corn fund is now open for applications. It is aimed at healthcare professionals involved in research or university based researchers with an interest in health or social care.
It aims to support pilot work, or to bring together a group of people to work on a proposal.
The criteria for applications are broad but the Foundation suggests the following domains, several of which are pertinent to the fields of ageing and geriatric medicine.
• achieving sustained behaviour changes in relation to smoking, diet, physical activity and/or alcohol consumption
• facilitating wellbeing and preventing mental ill health
• improving patient decision-making through, for example, shared decision-making interventions
• improving the design of community health activities by using new technologies to cost-effectively organise and interpret health outcome data
Further details can be found online at http://grants.bupafoundation.co.uk. The deadline for short-form applications is 6th July, 2012.
One of the perennials I get asked to comment on as a geriatrician are Office of National Statistics population projections and what they mean for geriatricians, older people, older patients and the population as a whole.
The most recent ONS paper to draw attention can be found here.
The headline statistic from this – one in three babies born in 2012 will live to see their 100th birthday – was sufficiently compelling to attract the attention of the lay media.
The Telegraph focussed on the financial challenges of providing pensions for the expanding cohort of octo- and nonagenarians.
The Scotsman took a more equivocal stance, worrying about the impact on the health service, whilst also praising the achievements in public health and healthcare underpinning the ever increasing life expectancy.
I was asked to appear on BBC Radio Nottingham to comment on this today (available for 6 days). Before the interview they played a “vox pop” of people on the high street. A consensus was evident, that quantity of life was desirable but only if it came with some quality of life. The challenge for us as geriatricians, as we attempt (and at times struggle) to support a rapidly expanding number of patients with dementia (cf: the National Dementia Strategy) and in care homes (cf: Quest for Quality), is to keep this objective firmly centre-stage.