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Older people - best practice examples

These are examples of good practice in care of older people collected by the project team.

Our invitation for submissions asks that the work is mapped on to the Principles of Nursing Practice. The Principles describe what everyone can expect from nursing practice, whether colleagues, patients their families or carers. We hope this helps demonstrate how these examples highlight particular aspects of the eight Principles.

The examples below acknowledge the challenges associated with meeting these expectations. However they show great creativity and commitment in addressing ways of working and educating staff, particularly in strategies to improve communication, team working, dignity and empathy.

The stories on this page are in both Word and PDF format - see how to access PDF files.

Aneurin Bevan Health Board - Fast Track end of life initiative

The 'Fast Track' end of life initiative secures immediate access to services and enables rapid discharge for individuals who want to die at home. It respects choice, supports informal carers, and prevents unnecessary/distressing admissions. To date, 100% of people who want to die at home are enabled to do so.

Tanya Strange's example is available to read in Word (73KB) and PDF (262KB)

Aneurin Bevan Health Board - care home governance

The Care Home Governance initiative ensures that the clinical delivery of care and health and safety for older people is monitored and maintained. It involves nurses and all NHS professionals who enter nursing homes observing practice/standards, supporting care home staff to improve practice and where necessary, escalating concerns which may affect the health, safety and well being of older people.

Tanya Strange's example is available to read in Word (73KB) and PDF (282KB) 

Bradford District Care Trust - communicating individuality

Staff based on Ward 24 are helping people with dementia to express who they are as an individual through the development of a ‘My Living Well’ Folder.

Neil Bryson's example is available to read in Word (54KB) and PDF (202KB) 

Bradford District Care Trust - Cognitive Stimulation Therapy

This story looks at cognitive stimulation therapy (CST) as a treatment option for those diagnosed with mild/moderate cognitive impairment.

Neil Bryson's example is available to read in Word (60KB) and PDF (247KB) 

Bradford District Care Trust - dementia

Staff from the Older People’s Mental Health Services went the extra mile (more than 200 to be precise) to the UK’s leading dementia centre to see how simple changes to the environment can have a huge impact for people with dementia.

Neil Bryson's example is available to read in Word (67KB) and PDF (233KB) 

Bradford District Care Trust - Facing the future with dementia

A Bradford couple living with the diagnosis of dementia spoke to an audience of over 60 professionals and carers about their journey through the care process and how they vowed to have the best quality of life possible.

Neil Bryson's example is available to read in Word (54KB) and PDF (203KB)

East Sussex Healthcare Trust
Angela Colosi, Nurse Consultant for Advanced Practice

Development of the Community Nursing workforce (including Community Matrons) in the skills of physical assessment and independent prescribing that will ensure that patients at home receive timely treatment in the most appropriate setting.

Angela's example is available to read in Word (68KB) and PDF (248KB)

Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust
Heidi Jensen, Head of Nursing

The complexity and difficulties associated with nursing frail older inpatients has been highlighted by national reports of substandard care. A multifaceted, multidisciplinary programme was designed to tackle these non-technical skills.

Heidi's example is available to read in Word (71KB) and PDF (274KB) 

Leicestershire Partnership Trust
Claire Rainbow and Fiona Craner

At Leicestershire Partnership Trust, assessment groups were predominantly carried out by occupational therapists. Due to a change in structure, nurses were asked to facilitate these groups. Claire Rainbow and Fiona Craner developed a nursing assessment tool in order to record observations during the group.

Claire and Fiona's example is available to read in Word (74KB) and PDF (276KB)

View the Nurse Assessment Tool: Word (30KB) and PDF (317KB)

Prince Philip Hospital, Bryngwyn mawr, Hywel Dda Health Board
Ann Robins, Ward Manager

A weekly carer clinic was developed in collaboration with Welsh Stroke Association to support patient and families of stroke survivors. We have also developed the role of Rehabilitation Assistant / Health care support worker to promote patient recovery and independence with therapy over 7 day period. Integrating nursing activities with therapy, caseload of their own, attending weekly MDT and family meetings, help plan patient goals and achieve set goals, resulting in improving patient motivation and outcomes.

Ann's example is available to read in Word (68KB) and PDF (257KB)

Sheffield Teaching Hospitals Hospitals NHS Trust - dementia care ward
Gill Smith, Matron

This example describes the development of a calm, patient centred environment for people with a diagnosis of dementia with acute medical illness.

Gill's example is available to read in Word (62KB) and PDF (227KB)

University Hospitals Birmingham
Margaret Harries, Lead Nurse Older Adult

Acute ward nurses alongside activities coordinator, volunteers and carers introduced Let’s Lunch and Afternoon Teas. To optimise the opportunity for frail older people to eat and drink, in response to national concerns that older people are “still hungry in hospital” and dehydrated, and left without support to eat and drink.

Margaret's example is available to read in Word (70KB) and PDF (246KB)

University Hospital of North Staffordshire
Fiona Howell, Senior Clinical Nurse - Older People

The Frail Elderly Assessment Unit is an acute assessment and admissions unit. The overall objective was for the Acute Hospital Trust, in partnership with local health and social care organisations, to deliver the specialist acute care that frail older people require in order to achieve their optimum functional capacity. 

Fiona's example is available to read in Word (74KB) and PDF (262KB)