Group Work In Elderly Care Health And Social Care Essay

Due to the nature of this essay it is of import that specific definitions are given to some of import footings to guarantee a clear apprehension of the subject. A autumn is defined as “ an event where a witting topic comes to rest unwittingly on the land or another lower degree ” ( Kellogg International Working Group on the Prevention of Falls by the Elderly, 1987 )

A long term status is defined as “ those conditions that can non, at present, be cured, but can be controlled by medicine and other therapies. ” ( Department of Health, 2007 ) . An person is classed as a ‘faller ‘ if they fall three times within a twelvemonth. ( Todd 2004 ) . At this point, the patient becomes a chronic or long term falls patient.

Group work aims to develop an raw job ( in this instance exercising for falls in the aged ) in a positive manner by conveying similar persons together into a group to research and understand the jobs in order to happen shared solutions, aided by each other in that determination doing actions ( Thompson and Thompson 2008 ) .

The CSP nucleus criterion associating to aged attention and falls is dictated by the Department of Health National Service Framework for Older Peoples, Standard 6. Standard 6 trades with the bar and direction of falls, with subdivision 6.31 and 6.32 being appropriate to physical therapists as it is associating to the rehabilitation of falls patients ( see Appendix 1 ) . Standard 6 besides refers to many different types of falls patients it is non sole to merely those in aged attention, with falls besides showing as an issue in assorted other criterions.

There are over 400 different hazard factors which can increase the likeliness of a autumn ( Nuffield Institute for Health and NHS Centre for Reviews and Dissemination, 1996 ) but these factors are non merely relevant to the aged population, but besides to the normally less vulnerable population such as immature grownups. Elderly attention is seen as a high hazard group due to legion different factors affecting physical, physiological and societal factors. Some of these factors are ; multiply medicine, decreased musculus strength, decreased balance/proprioreception, hapless pace, unequal footwear and pes attention, centripetal damage, reduced ability of sight and hearing, mental wellness jobs, hapless diet, lifestyle factors ( reduced activity, intoxicant ingestion etc. ) , environmental factors ( uneven pavings, unsteady shocking etc ) and besides some implicit in conditions ( e.g. arthritis, low blood force per unit area etc ) .

This is non a comprehensive list of hazard factors but is some of the more common constituents that increase the possibility of a autumn within the aged population. It is of import that the physical therapist understands most of the common hazard factors as it is in primary attention where many healers will come into contact with many falls patients. Effective bar and direction is indispensable in cut downing the cost of falls to the NHS. It is reported that the cost of falls in aged attention is about ?15million every twelvemonth through direct health care costs with “ associated wellness attention bing a minimal ?92,000 per twelvemonth for an mean acute trust. ” ( Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust 2007 ) With falls bing the NHS a important sum it is of import that the most efficient and effectual intercession is found, one which will be discussed within group work.


Group work is a really wide subject within rehabilitation as there are many different types of groups runing from support groups to exert groups. Meta-analysis conducted into the effectivity of different attacks to falls bar and direction have suggested that the most successful intercession was the multifactorial falls risk appraisal and direction programmes, with “ exercising being every bit effectual to cut downing the hazard of falls. ” ( Chang et al. 2004 ) , which is besides supported by Lord, Castell, et. Al ( 2003 ) . With this in head, the benefits and effectivity of exercising groups conducted as portion of a falls patient ‘s rehabilitation will be examined.

Exercise has been shown to advance the rehabilitation of a falls patient due to the physical benefits it can supply. Barnett et. Al. ( 2003 ) found that even though there was a high attachment rate to the group exercising, there was no benefit to bettering strength and finally cut downing falls. This is extremely contested though by CSP research ( 2001 ) and besides Campbell, Buchner et. Al ( 1999 ) , who both provide univocal grounds that some grade of strength preparation provides benefits to cut down the rate of falls. The strength preparation allows the patient to construct up the strength in their nucleus organic structure and legs which helps to keep a stable balance.

One of the biggest jobs for falls patients is balance, for illustration due to jobs such as reduced co-ordination, reduced map of sight and increased giddiness because of low blood force per unit area. An exercising programme which has elements of a balance re-education may cut down the figure of falls a patient may incur. Lord et. Al. ( 2003 ) found a “ 22 % decrease in falls when their exercising programme contained a balance component, a similar figure found within the FICSIT tests ( 1993 ) . ” Balance exercises work on bettering dynamic standing balance and besides inactive balance, depending on whether or non the base of support ( BOS ) is nomadic or fixed ( Maejima et. Al. 2009 ) .

Exercise provides positive benefits to falls patients. But one job that does be within aged attention exercising is the deficiency of motive to take portion in an extended exercising programme, due to a reduced exercising tolerance and decreased mobility because of the ageing procedure. Campbell, Buchner et. Al. ( 1999 ) stated, “ Long term decrease in falls will depend non merely on continued effectivity of a programme, but besides the willingness of a topic to persist. ” Estabrooks and Carron ( 1999 ) suggested that there is a “ promising correlativity between exercising attachment and group coherence ” , therefore foregrounding one of the advantages of group working. Their findings back up an premise that within an exercising category, both long term and short term exercising attachment can be improved if the intercession involves both undertaking and societal coherence. Furthermore, Lord et. Al. ( 2003 ) suggested that an increased figure of options within the exercising programme will increase the likeliness of exercising attachment.

Group exercising classes allow the Physiotherapist to increase the attachment to an exercising programme, but it besides gives each patient a opportunity to better their psychosocial province via interaction with a societal group and support from others in similar state of affairss. Estabrooks and Carron ( 1999 ) besides found in their research that “ older grownups are ab initio attracted to a new societal chance and experience united in the socialisation that occurs during or following exercising categories ” . This enhances the principle that, increased societal support and group coherence lead to improved exercising attachment and improved psychosocial well-being.

There is a batch positive grounds for the usage of group exercising programmes, but in respects to non-individualised exercising programmes, the NICE guidelines ( 2004 ) stated that “ Exercise in groups should non be discouraged as a agency of wellness publicity, but there is small grounds that exercising intercessions that were non separately prescribed for community-dwelling older people are effectual in falls bar. ” This is supported by Campbell, Buchner et. Al. ( 1999 ) as their research found that separately tailored exercising programmes were of import when covering with such a varied and frequently frail population. Barnett et. Al. ( 2003 ) research into community based group exercising programmes conflicts this position as his grounds provinces that he found a 40 % lessening in the hazard of falls in his intercession group compared to that of his control group. They besides found that attachment rate to the Sessionss was highly high with “ 28 topics go toing 30 or more categories ( sum of 37 ) ” which increased the effectivity of the exercisings provided. Lord et. Al. ( 2003 ) found a similar figure in that his intercession group has 22 % fewer falls than that in his control group. Falls that did happen were of a much lever severe in nature, with deleterious falls reduced in analogue to that of entire falls ( Robertson et al. 2001, Campbell, Tilyard et. Al. 1997 ) . There besides seems an increased benefit to old lumbermans as Godhead et Al. ( 2003 ) found a decrease of 31 % in the figure of falls to those who have fallen before.

In term of effectivity, exercising is effectual in cut downing the hazard of falls ( Chang et. Al 2004, Campbell & A ; Buchner et. Al. 1999, Barnett et. Al. 2003 ) but within meta-analysis and systematic reappraisals, group exercising programmes look to be less widely investigated that single exercising programmes. The most effectual intercession was multifactorial falls risk appraisal and direction programme, with exercising besides being effectual ( Chang et. al 2004 ) . He besides found that environmental alterations and educational programmes provided limited effectivity in the bar and direction of falls.

One of import factor of an exercising programme which involves changing physical abilities of patients from a primary attention puting demands to be “ flexible in order to embrace the diverse motive and physical capacities of group members ” Crook et Al. ( 1998 ) . This suggests that an exercising programme is required to be run by a professional to restrict jobs such as “ deficient strength to bring forth needed additions ” ( Lord et al. 2003 ) .

As mentioned before, the cost of falls in aged patients is a significant sum of money to the NHS, so it is of import to see whether group exercising programmes are cost effectual in comparing to the sum of falls that occur as a consequence. Barnett et Al. ( 2003 ) suggested that it a group specific exercising programme can easy be replicated, which can ensue in a low cost intercession for an at-risk job group. This is contested by Timone et Al ( 2008 ) who put frontward the statement that there is non much of a different between the costs of group intercessions compared to single intercessions. Research undertaken by Robertson et Al ( 2001 ) evaluated exercising programmed in their rational to forestall falls. It was found that there was no existent decrease in falls even with such exercising programmes, accordingly doing no ‘significant decrease in health care costs ‘ ( Robertson et al, 2001 ) . It could hence be suggested that the cost-effectiveness of group exercising for the aged demands to be studied farther ( Timone et al 2008 ) , and besides argued whether group exercising is an appropriate intercession for the aged. Finally, handling a big figure of people can be a positive for the healer involved due to the clip restraints that are in topographic point. On the other had there could be more conflicts/unbalance within larger group of people so working one on one, hence cut downing the effectivity of group coherence and finally the positive benefits group exercising may supply.


To reason, grounds has shown that Falls within the UK are of a immense cost to the NHS with it bing about ?15million every twelvemonth, with this in head it is of import that the most cost effectual and good intervention is found to assist cut down this cost. A multifactorial falls hazard appraisal has proven to be the most effectual at handling long term falls patients, but exercising has shown to be effectual as good. Research on the effects of exercising have shown that there is a important decrease in the rate of falls for patients who taken portion in some signifier of balance and strength preparation. Limited important research has been conducted on the effects of exercising groups, due to this the NICE guidelines ( 2009 ) has non endorsed it as a recommended intercession. The research looked at within the organic structure of this essay illustrate the benefits of group work associating to an addition in exercising attachment when there is a degree of group coherence. This stems from the psychosocial factors and support aspect that come from other members of the group who are at a similar phase of rehabilitation. To keep the benefits that may show within an exercising group it is of import that it is run by a professional who is able to judge the degree of participants, apply needed exercisings and be able to place when there is a demand to raise or lower the degree of exercising.

It could be suggested that there is statement that there may be no benefit to group exercising programmes in comparing to single exercising programmes. Some grounds has shown that in footings of effectivity associating to a decrease in the cost of falls, group work provides really small benefits therefore it is cost effectual to transport out single exercising programmes.

Group exercising programmes appear to hold positive benefits to falls patients, chiefly due to the psychosocial elements a group can supply, but in relation to the physical benefits, more research is required as really small has been done when compared to single exercising programmes and other intercessions. Research is besides required into whether within groups, it is merely the psychosocial elements which increase the effectivity of the programme or whether a competitory component consequences in increased strength degrees.

In footings of the original inquiry, group work appears to be every bit effectual as single programmes, although there has been limited grounds to propose that it has a significant benefit hence why the NICE guidelines have non endorsed it as a recommended intercession. Evidence suggests that groups allow an addition in the attachment to exert in relation to group coherence. There is besides the benefit of a psychosocial component, which provides a sense of wellbeing to those within a group ambiance.

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