NHS Wales awards Torfaen falls initiative

Torfaen’s falls service is the only one in Aneurin Bevan University Health Board to run exercise classes in which other organisations offer advice, said physiotherapist Karen Minton.


Pictured celebrating the award are NHS Wales chief exec Andrew Goodall; consultant Muhammad Usman; falls lead Clare Younger; nurse Deborah Povey; and physios Ceri Marlog and Karen Minton

The service made a big impression on NHS Wales and this summer Ms Minton and her colleagues were in Cardiff to collect the authority’s award for ‘working seamlessly across organisations’.

She told Frontline: ‘The judges visited our service and we showed them the journey of patients through our falls service. They could see the benefits for the patients, and we had patients who were able to speak about their personal experience of our classes.

‘We also had people from other organisations, such as the Welsh Ambulance Service, and the judges could speak to them about how they integrate with our service.’

Integrated working is a key aspect of the falls service, not only with the ambulance service, but the fire service, meals on wheels, providers of assistive technology and charities, such as the National Osteoporosis Society.

The aims are twofold. First, representatives from these organisations are invited to speak at exercises classes to help people be aware of anything which may help them. Fire safety, is just one example.

Second, communication between the Torfaen falls team and external organisations is designed to exchange information about people at risk of falling or other hazards.

‘We also link into the Torfaen frailty team, which has many reablement physiotherapists in it,’ Ms Minton said.

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