A Structured Literature Review to Identify Cost-effective Interventions to Prevent Falls in Older People Living in the Community
Public Health England Public Health England, London. 2018
Summarises the findings from a literature review to identify cost-effective interventions in preventing falls in older people living in the community in England. The review was conducted to inform an economic model to estimate the return on investment of the cost effective interventions across communities in England. The review identified 26 studies, of which 12 were judged to be directly applicable. These included 6 types of interventions: exercise, home assessment and modifications, multifactorial programmes; medicines review and modification to drugs; cardiac pacing and expedited cataract surgery. Based on the evidence, the review recommends interventions to be included in the economic model.
An Analysis of the Economic Impacts of the British Red Cross Support at Home Service
Dixon J, Winterbourne S, Lombard D, et al Personal Social Services Research Unit, London. 2015
This British Red Cross volunteer-based scheme offers short-term (4-12 week) practical and emotional support at home for older people recently discharged from hospital. Using data from the British Red Cross internal evaluation (n=52 individuals; Joy et al., 2013), savings from needing less help with daily activities and improvements in subjective well-being averaged £884 per person. This covered savings up until 6 months following the intervention and included reduced use of paid homecare workers (£167), unpaid care valued at minimum wage (£411) and general help (£75), as well as reduced healthcare costs for treatment associated with falls (£153), malnutrition (£74) and depressive symptoms (£4). The internal British Red Cross evaluation could not identify a control group and no adequate external comparison group could be identified for our economic evaluation. However, we estimated that the intervention costs an average £169 per person, including volunteer time valued at minimum wage. The scheme would need to be responsible for 19 per cent of the estimated savings to be considered cost-saving. Qualitative research, conducted as part of the British Red Cross evaluation, indicated that there were also wider benefits, including enabling safe discharge, supporting carers, enabling patient advocacy and quality of life benefits that could not be included in the economic analysis. More detailed results are available.
Building Community Capacity: Making an Economic Case
Knapp M, Bauer A, Perkins M Personal Social Services Research Unit, London. 2010
Our aim in this small study was to develop simple ‘models’ of interventions that can contribute
to local community development programmes by examining some of the possible impacts. We
could not look at all impacts because of data limitations. These are necessarily simplified
representations of reality, because of the availability of evidence. But this is a pragmatic
approach, using published, unpublished and experiential evidence, and working closely with local experts, and was the most helpful way to go forward given time constraints. We
calculated the costs of three particular community initiatives – time banks, befriending and
community navigators for people with debt or benefits problems – and found that each
generated net economic benefits in quite a short time period. Each of those calculations was
conservative in that we only attached a monetary value to a subset of the potential benefits.
Commissioning Cost-Effective Services for Promotion of Mental Health and Wellbeing and Prevention of Mental Ill-Health
McDaid D, Park A, Knapp M Public Health England, London. 2017
A return on investment resource to support local commissioners in designing and implementing mental health and wellbeing support services.
Developing your Local Housing Offer for Health and Care
Housing Learning and Improvement Network Housing Learning and Improvement Network, London. 2016
Updated in 2016, this tool acknowledges the significance of housing as a partner and contributor to achieving the aims of health and social care services. With references to latest policy and practice, it is aimed at helping housing and support articulate and demonstrate the value of their services in terms of their partners’ targets and outcomes.
To explore specialist services set up to improve homeless people’s experiences of leaving hospital. It is investigating different types of services; for example, some put patients in touch with a specially trained GP, others might employ a housing support worker to ensure people do not return to living on the streets after hospital discharge. We want to know what homeless people think of specialist services, how they help them tackle the range of problems they may have, and if this support prevents them returning to hospital. To compare effectiveness and costs we will also study hospital discharge arrangements where no specialist support for homeless people is in place.
Growing Innovative Models of Health, Care and Support for Adults
Social Care Institute for Excellence Social Care Institute for Excellence, London. 2018
Key Messages: Innovation is needed more than ever as our challenges grow. Innovation does not only mean technological breakthroughs or large restructures. New and better ways of delivering relationship-based care are needed, and already exist, but are inconsistently implemented or poorly scaled.
For innovation to flourish, we need to find better ways to help people bring good ideas from the margins into core business. The keys to success are:
a shared ambition to ‘embed person- and community-centred ways of working across the system, using the best available tools and evidence’
co-production: planning with the people who have the greatest stake in our services from the beginning
a new model of leadership which is collaborative and convening
investment and commissioning approaches which transfer resources from low quality, low outcomes into approaches which work effectively
effective outcomes monitoring and use of data to drive change
a willingness to learn from experience.
Home Care: Delivering Personal Care and Practical Support to Older People Living in their Own Homes [NG21]
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, London. 2015
This guideline covers the planning and delivery of person-centred care for older people living in their own homes (known as home care or domiciliary care). It aims to promote older people’s independence and to ensure safe and consistently high quality home care services.
The Care Quality Commission uses NICE guidelines as evidence to inform the inspection process.
The guideline includes recommendations on:
ensuring care is person centred
providing information about care and support options
planning and reviewing home care and support
delivering home care, including recommendations on the length home care visits
joint working between health and social care
ensuring safety and safeguarding people using home care services
recruiting, training and supporting home care workers
Who is it for?
Health and social care practitioners
Home care provider organisations
Home care managers and workers
Older people using or planning to use home care services, and their carers
Commissioners of home care services should ensure any service specifications take into account the recommendations in this guideline.
Related NICE guideline:
APPENDIX C3 – Economics Report Bauer A, King D, Knapp M
Interventions for preventing falls in older people in care facilities and hospitals
Cameron ID, Gillespie LD, Robertson MC, et al Cochrane Database Systematic Reviews, 12, CD005465. 2012
Falls in care facilities and hospitals are common events that cause considerable morbidity and mortality for older people. This is an update of a review first published in 2010.
To assess the effectiveness of interventions designed to reduce falls by older people in care facilities and hospitals.
We searched the Cochrane Bone, Joint and Muscle Trauma Group Specialised Register (March 2012); The Cochrane Library 2012, Issue 3; MEDLINE, EMBASE, and CINAHL (all to March 2012); ongoing trial registers (to August 2012), and reference lists of articles.
Randomised controlled trials of interventions to reduce falls in older people in residential or nursing care facilities or hospitals.
DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS:
Two review authors independently assessed risk of bias and extracted data. We used a rate ratio (RaR) and 95% confidence interval (CI) to compare the rate of falls (e.g. falls per person year) between intervention and control groups. For risk of falling we used a risk ratio (RR) and 95% CI based on the number of people falling (fallers) in each group. We pooled results where appropriate.
We included 60 trials (60,345 participants), 43 trials (30,373 participants) in care facilities, and 17 (29,972 participants) in hospitals.Results from 13 trials testing exercise interventions in care facilities were inconsistent. Overall, there was no difference between intervention and control groups in rate of falls (RaR 1.03, 95% CI 0.81 to 1.31; 8 trials, 1844 participants) or risk of falling (RR 1.07, 95% CI 0.94 to 1.23; 8 trials, 1887 participants). Post hoc subgroup analysis by level of care suggested that exercise might reduce falls in people in intermediate level facilities, and increase falls in facilities providing high levels of nursing care.In care facilities, vitamin D supplementation reduced the rate of falls (RaR 0.63, 95% CI 0.46 to 0.86; 5 trials, 4603 participants), but not risk of falling (RR 0.99, 95% CI 0.90 to 1.08; 6 trials, 5186 participants).For multifactorial interventions in care facilities, the rate of falls (RaR 0.78, 95% CI 0.59 to 1.04; 7 trials, 2876 participants) and risk of falling (RR 0.89, 95% CI 0.77 to 1.02; 7 trials, 2632 participants) suggested possible benefits, but this evidence was not conclusive.In subacute wards in hospital, additional physiotherapy (supervised exercises) did not significantly reduce rate of falls (RaR 0.54, 95% CI 0.16 to 1.81; 1 trial, 54 participants) but achieved a significant reduction in risk of falling (RR 0.36, 95% CI 0.14 to 0.93; 2 trials, 83 participants).In one trial in a subacute ward (54 participants), carpet flooring significantly increased the rate of falls compared with vinyl flooring (RaR 14.73, 95% CI 1.88 to 115.35) and potentially increased the risk of falling (RR 8.33, 95% CI 0.95 to 73.37).One trial (1822 participants) testing an educational session by a trained research nurse targeting individual fall risk factors in patients at high risk of falling in acute medical wards achieved a significant reduction in risk of falling (RR 0.29, 95% CI 0.11 to 0.74).Overall, multifactorial interventions in hospitals reduced the rate of falls (RaR 0.69, 95% CI 0.49 to 0.96; 4 trials, 6478 participants) and risk of falling (RR 0.71, 95% CI 0.46 to 1.09; 3 trials, 4824 participants), although the evidence for risk of falling was inconclusive. Of these, one trial in a subacute setting reported the effect was not apparent until after 45 days in hospital. Multidisciplinary care in a geriatric ward after hip fracture surgery compared with usual care in an orthopaedic ward significantly reduced rate of falls (RaR 0.38, 95% CI 0.19 to 0.74; 1 trial, 199 participants) and risk of falling (RR 0.41, 95% CI 0.20 to 0.83). More trials are needed to confirm the effectiveness of multifactorial interventions in acute and subacute hospital settings.
In care facilities, vitamin D supplementation is effective in reducing the rate of falls. Exercise in subacute hospital settings appears effective but its effectiveness in care facilities remains uncertain due to conflicting results, possibly associated with differences in interventions and levels of dependency. There is evidence that multifactorial interventions reduce falls in hospitals but the evidence for risk of falling was inconclusive. Evidence for multifactorial interventions in care facilities suggests possible benefits, but this was inconclusive.
Interventions for preventing falls in older people living in the community
Gillespie LD, Robertson MC, Gillespie WJ, et al Cochrane Database Systematic Reviews, 9, 1-4. 2012
As people get older, they may fall more often for a variety of reasons including problems with balance, poor vision, and dementia. Up to 30% may fall in a year. Although one in five falls may require medical attention, less than one in 10 results in a fracture.
This review looked at the healthcare literature to establish which fall prevention interventions are effective for older people living in the community, and included 159 randomised controlled trials with 79,193 participants.
Group and home-based exercise programmes, usually containing some balance and strength training exercises, effectively reduced falls, as did Tai Chi. Overall, exercise programmes aimed at reducing falls appear to reduce fractures.
Multifactorial interventions assess an individual’s risk of falling, and then carry out treatment or arrange referrals to reduce the identified risks. Overall, current evidence shows that this type of intervention reduces the number of falls in older people living in the community but not the number of people falling during follow-up. These are complex interventions, and their effectiveness may be dependent on factors yet to be determined.
Interventions to improve home safety appear to be effective, especially in people at higher risk of falling and when carried out by occupational therapists. An anti-slip shoe device worn in icy conditions can also reduce falls.
Taking vitamin D supplements does not appear to reduce falls in most community-dwelling older people, but may do so in those who have lower vitamin D levels in the blood before treatment.
Some medications increase the risk of falling. Three trials in this review failed to reduce the number of falls by reviewing and adjusting medications. A fourth trial involving family physicians and their patients in medication review was effective in reducing falls. Gradual withdrawal of a particular type of drug for improving sleep, reducing anxiety, and treating depression (psychotropic medication) has been shown to reduce falls.
Cataract surgery reduces falls in women having the operation on the first affected eye. Insertion of a pacemaker can reduce falls in people with frequent falls associated with carotid sinus hypersensitivity, a condition which causes sudden changes in heart rate and blood pressure.
In people with disabling foot pain, the addition of footwear assessment, customised insoles, and foot and ankle exercises to regular podiatry reduced the number of falls but not the number of people falling.
The evidence relating to the provision of educational materials alone for preventing falls is inconclusive
Money Matters: Reviews of Cost-effective Initiatives
Institute of Public Care The Institute for Research and Innovation in Social Services, Glasgow. 2011
This set of eight case studies, produced by the Institute of Public Care on behalf of IRISS (the Institute for Research and Innovation in Social Services), provides detailed analysis of the cost-effectiveness of a series of recent social care initiatives, ranging from nationwide and relatively high-profile schemes such as individual budgets to those thus far unique to one country, city or local authority area in the UK.
In each case, the report provides an overview of the initiative – its origins, including previous variants of the scheme, who it is intended to help, and how it works in practice – before justifying claims of cost-effectiveness by reference to detailed comparative costings, using one illustrative implementation of the scheme where the initiative is nationwide. Based on the analysis, the report sets out the initiative’s applicability to other settings as well as potential impediments to broader implementation.
The eight initiatives scrutinised are:
A study of Shared Lives schemes in south east England for providing care in the carer’s own home for individuals placed there by the local authority.
An extra-care housing scheme completed in Bradford.
Health in mind – social inclusion support for people with mental health needs in Bradford based round a series of mental health “well-being cafes”.
LinkAge Plus – analysis of nationwide DWP-funded pilot schemes for an holistic approach to provision of services for older people.
The Rapid Response Adaptations Programme – a Welsh initiative for providing adaptations such as ramps to let people return to their own homes.
A project in north west England to guide older people with low-level needs through a self-assessment process.
Analysis of various pilot sites taking different approaches to individual budgets, based on a broader evaluation conducted in 2008.
A project in two acute trusts in London to reconfigure hospital discharge procedures to emphasise rehabilitation.
Preventing Loneliness and Social Isolation: Interventions and Outcomes. SCIE Research Briefing 39
Windle K, Francis J, Coomber C Social Care Institute for Excellence, London. 2011
This is one in a series of research briefings about preventive care and support for adults.
Prevention is broadly defined to include a wide range of services that:
prevent or delay the deterioration of wellbeing resulting from ageing, illness or disability
delay the need for more costly and intensive services.
Preventive services represent a continuum of support ranging from the most intensive, ‘tertiary services’ such as intermediate care or reablement, down to ‘secondary’ or early intervention, and finally, ‘primary prevention’ aimed at promoting wellbeing. Primary prevention is generally designed for people with few social care needs or symptoms of illness. The focus therefore is on maintaining independence and good health and promoting wellbeing. The range of these ‘wellbeing’ interventions includes activities to reduce social isolation, practical help with tasks like shopping or gardening, universal healthy living advice, intergenerational activities and transport, and other ways of helping people get out and about.
Just as the range of wellbeing services is extensive, so too is the available literature examining how well they work. For this research briefing, the focus has been narrowed to the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of services aimed at preventing social isolation and loneliness. Our review question was: ‘To what extent does investment in services that prevent social isolation improve people’s wellbeing and reduce the need for ongoing care and support?’
While ‘social isolation’ and ‘loneliness’ are often used interchangeably, one paper examined the distinct meanings that people attach to each concept. ‘Loneliness’ was reported as being a subjective, negative feeling associated with loss (e.g. loss of a partner or children relocating), while ‘social isolation’ was described as imposed isolation from normal social networks caused by loss of mobility or deteriorating health. This briefing focuses on services aimed at reducing the effects of both loneliness and social isolation. Although the terms might have slightly different meanings, the experience of both is generally negative and the resulting impacts are undesirable at the individual, community and societal levels.
Older people are particularly vulnerable to social isolation or loneliness owing to loss of friends and family, mobility or income.
Social isolation and loneliness impact upon individuals’ quality of life and wellbeing, adversely affecting health and increasing their use of health and social care services.
The interventions to tackle social isolation or loneliness include: befriending, mentoring, Community Navigators, social group schemes.
People who use befriending or Community Navigator services reported that they were less lonely and socially isolated following the intervention.
The outcomes from mentoring services are less clear; one study reported improvements in mental and physical health, another that no difference was found.
Where longitudinal studies recorded survival rates, older people who were part of a social group intervention had a greater chance of survival than those who had not received such a service.
Users report high satisfaction with services, benefiting from such interventions by increasing their social interaction and community involvement, taking up or going back to hobbies and participating in wider community activities.
Users argued for flexibility and adaptation of services. One-to-one services could be more flexible, while enjoyment of group activities would be greater if these could be tailored to users’ preferences.
When planning services to reduce social isolation or loneliness, strong partnership arrangements need to be in place between organisations to ensure developed services can be sustained.
We need to invest in proven projects. Community Navigator interventions have been shown to be effective in identifying those individuals who are socially isolated. Befriending services can be effective in reducing depression and cost-effective.
Research needs to be carried out on interventions that include different genders, populations and localities.
There is an urgent need for more longitudinal, randomised controlled trials that incorporate standardised quality-of-life and cost measures.
Shared Lives Costs and Effectiveness (SLiCE)
Brookes N Personal Social Services Research Unit, Kent. 2018
In the Shared Lives model, an adult who needs support and/or accommodation moves in with or regularly visits an approved Shared Lives carer after they have been matched for compatibility. At present there is a limited evidence base for Shared Lives. The proposed research will mean that a thorough exploration of how successful the model is and whether it represents a good investment can be explored. An outcome evaluation will include: collection of data including service user characteristics, risks and needs, case management information, service use, quality of life and well-being measures; data collection from a comparison group of Shared Lives-suitable, non-participating service users; interviews with service users and Shared Lives carers focusing on outcomes; and use of other administrative and survey data.
Six Innovations in Social Care
Think Local Act Personal Think Local Act Personal, London. 2018
A group of innovators in social care have produced a summary of six innovations.
The innovations covered are:
Local Area Coordination
Each innovation is presented as a one- page summary which cover:
the problem they are aiming to solve
the solution they have created
their evidence base and expected impact
the stage they are at currently
what else is needed to support it
and what would stop the innovation from happening successfully
This document is useful for anyone who is interested in new models of care and support, and would like to find out about different innovations that are being developed across the UK
Small But Significant: The Impact and Cost Benefits of Handyperson Services
Adams S Care and Repair England, London. 2018
An evaluation of the impacts and cost benefits of handyperson services carrying out small repairs and minor adaptations in the home for older people. It looks at how handyperson service fit into the current policy landscape summarises current evidence on their impact and cost effectiveness. It then provides an in depth evaluation of the of Preston Care and Repair handyperson service, with analysis of outputs, outcomes and examines the cost benefits in relation to falls prevention. The evaluation involved data analysis of jobs completed, a survey of users of the service and interviews with staff and service users. It reports that during the 9 month evaluation period 1,399 jobs were carried out in the homes of 697 older people, which exceeded outcome targets. Of people using the service, 46 percent were over 80 years and 72 percent were older people living alone. Older people also valued the service. Ninety-six percent of those surveyed said that the Preston Care and Repair handyperson service made them less worried about their home and 100 percent said that they would recommend the service to others. Analysis of the falls prevention impact on a small number of higher risk cases, found that for every £1 spent on the handyperson service the saving to health and care was £4.28. Other health and social care related outcomes included a risk reduction for hospital admission risk reduction and faster discharge to home, improved wellbeing, safer independent living, and reduced isolation. The report illustrates the impacts of handyperson services cover health, housing and social care aims and objectives. They also offer a cost effective solution with significant cost benefits and a high rate of return on investment, both financial and social
Tackling Loneliness and Social Isolation: The Role of Commissioners
Social Care Institute for Excellence Social Care Institute for Excellence, London. 2018
With one million people aged 65 and over in the UK reporting they are often or always lonely, few would refute the need to tackle this issue. (1)
However, loneliness and social isolation are conditions that are difficult to identify, complex to address and hard to resolve. The evidence base for interventions to address the problems of loneliness and social isolation is emerging but inconclusive at this stage.
Taking Stock: Assessing the Value of Preventative Support
New Economics Foundation and British Red Cross British Red Cross, London. 2012
The aim of this report is to illustrate how British Red Cross preventative services providing time-limited practical and emotional support deliver savings for public sector partners including the NHS and local authorities. It presents brief case studies of 5 people who received personalised support from British Red Cross staff and volunteers to help them live independently in their communities. In each case it describes the action taken and the impact of the services and support provided. It includes an independent economic analysis of each case study assessing the costs which could have been incurred by statutory services in delivering care in the absence of the British Red Cross services. It reports that savings of between £700 and over £10,000 were delivered per person, and that this reflects a minimum return on investment of over 3.5 times the cost of the British Red Cross service provided.
The PEDRO Study: Partnerships Between Deaf People and Hearing Dogs
Beresford B Socia Policy Research Unit, York. Due to complete 2019
The PEDRO study is evaluating and exploring hearing dog partnerships. The aim of the study is to understand the impacts and experiences of these partnerships, and their place within wider support and provision for deaf people and people with hearing loss.
NIHR School for
Social Care Research