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Hip fracture guidelines tackle 'considerable variations' in UK and Irish hospital care
Date:1/11/2012

e the fact that guidance has been in place since the early 1990s concerning best practice management for these vulnerable patients, there remain considerable variations in models of post-operative care, rehabilitation and orthogeriatric input" he says.

"Bringing together experts in anaesthesia, orthopaedics, geriatrics and emergency medicine has enabled us to look at the journey of the hip fracture patients from admission to discharge and recommend how their care can be maximised by everyone involved."

Approximately 77,000 patients break their hips in the UK every year, spending an average of 16 days in hospital and costing the National Health Service 785 million. The majority (95 per cent) occur in people over 60 years of age and 75 per cent occur in females.

More than eight per cent of patients will die within 30 days of a hip fracture, especially if they are older, sicker or male, and this figure rises to up to 30 per cent within a year. It has been suggested that half of postoperative deaths are potentially preventable.

Only 44 per cent of UK patients admitted from home are discharged back to their home within 30 days of surgery. A further 22 per cent are discharged to a residential or nursing home and they can often spend a long time in hospital waiting for admission to these facilities, blocking much needed beds.

The ten-point action plan advises that:

  1. There should be protocol-driven, fast-track admission of patients with hip fractures through the emergency department.
  2. Patients with hip fractures require multidisciplinary care, led by orthogeriatricians.
  3. Surgery is the best analgesic for hip fractures.
  4. Surgical repair of hip fractures should occur within 48 hours of hospital admission.
  5. Surgery and anaesthesia must be undertaken by appropriately experienced surgeons and anaesthetists.
  6. There must be high-quality communication between clinicians and allied health profess
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Contact: Annette Whibley
annette.wizard@gmail.com
Wiley-Blackwell
Source:Eurekalert

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