Infections, falls, dehydration and/or malnutrition in the elderly leads to reduced quality of life, increased visits to the GP and more frequent hospital admissions and length of stay. The Essentials in Care e-learning programme consists of three short e-learning sessions designed to give frontline staff from domiciliary, community, residential and nursing homes essential knowledge in care. This resource will not only improve confidence and promote empowerment but also give staff a greater ability to intervene more effectively and to recognise early risk factors and signs of deterioration. By having some basic essential knowledge and awareness, carers and staff can make a difference.
On researching the many causes of admission to hospital for the elderly, it became apparent that causes were often not only singular. For instance, if someone was admitted following a fall, it was found that they were dehydrated, or had an infection. Carers are in a position whereby they deliver continuity in day-to-day assistance in order to meet the individual care needs of the service user/patient. They are perfectly placed to recognise the early signs of change and to provide some of the essentials in care needed to maintain health, well-being and quality of life.
This programme was developed as a result of funding received in order to improve quality of life and reduce potential hospital admissions.