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NICE issues guideline to prevent falls in elderly people

BMJ 2004; 329 doi: (Published 25 November 2004) Cite this as: BMJ 2004;329:1258
  1. Susan Mayor
  1. London

    Elderly people should be asked about falls and those at risk should be offered multifactorial assessment and appropriate interventions, a clinical guideline published this week for the NHS in England and Wales recommends.

    The guideline, developed by the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE), and the National Collaborating Centre for Nursing and Supportive Care (based at the Royal College of Nursing), makes recommendations about the care of elderly people in the community or extended care for those either who have had a fall or who are considered at risk of falling.

    It acknowledges that the major risk factors for falling are diverse, but it suggests that many of them—balance impairment, muscle weakness, excessive or suboptimal medication use, and environmental hazards—can be changed. Local health communities are asked to …

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