Mid Yorks NHS Trust adopts physio-designed training to prevent falls

Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust has launched falls prevention training for staff which recreates real-life situations in allocated sections of actual wards and clinics.


Real life scenarios are recreated for staff learning about falls prevention training at Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust

The aim of the training is to reduce preventable falls and improve staff confidence in managing people who have fallen.

Leading the programme is Catherine Bramwell-Walsh (below right), neuro physiotherapist and falls prevention practitioner in the trust’s quality and safety team. She started developing the programme in March. After a pilot in April and May, it was launched in July.

‘We wanted to make the training more interesting, interactive and enjoyable for staff,’ she said.


Evidence suggests scenario-based and practical training can increase learning retention by up to 75 per cent, whereas in traditional teaching methods the average is only 5-10 per cent.’

She said the style of teaching was designed to allow staff the time to complete bespoke training in their work environment.

The training consists of two short scenarios. One is how to deliver an assessment and care plan for a patient at risk of falling, which is delivered to individuals. The second is to educate teams about managing people after a fall and ensure they work effectively together.

It was created in consultation with ward managers and by adapting the lessons learned from investigations into falls in the trust.

The programme started in the medical geriatric ward at the trust’s Pinderfields Hospital, Wakefield. It has been extended to the hospital’s medical assessment unit and will be rolled out to the trust’s two other hospitals.

Ms Bramwell-Walsh’s tips for the successful delivery of this type of training were: ‘You need to be clear about what you want to achieve and focus on a specific task or skill.

‘And you need to rehearse the scenarios beforehand. We learned the hard way that if the situation was not tightly managed, we could not keep to time. So we over-ran in the first few programmes.’

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