Teams at The Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust (PAHT) are focusing on how to #MakeMovementCount by encouraging patients to get up, get dressed and get moving.
Staying in hospital, and the reduced physical movement caused by sitting in bed for prolonged periods of time, can lead to patients becoming less active, reducing their mobility and increasing other risk factors such as falls, fractures and pressure ulcers.
This is known in medical terms as ‘deconditioning’. It can also affect a person’s cognitive behaviour, impacting their ability to eat and drink, and lead to other outcomes such as dehydration and incontinence. It can affect anyone of any age, but an elderly person, particularly if they are already of reduced mobility and have a low appetite before admission to hospital, are at a very high risk.
Inpatients will be reminded to have fresh clothes, get dressed where able to, wear sensible footwear (or slippers); to sit out of bed, take regular short walks and keep their minds active by reading, listening to audiobooks or music and doing activities such as crosswords.
Visitors can help by bringing relevant items in and encouraging their loved ones to sit out of bed or to take a short walk, if they are able to, as part of the visit.
Teams on the wards at PAHT will support and encourage patients, make sure they get up and get dressed and are sat in a chair for mealtimes (subject to any medical restrictions); and to take regular short walks and keep their minds active.
They will also refer eligible patients to the new Virtual Hospital – a service that provides face-to-face nursing care, therapy and remote monitoring services for a range of conditions from the comfort of patients’ homes that would otherwise require an acute hospital bed – enabling patients to be discharged from hospital but remain under the care and supervision of dedicated medical teams.
By making movement count, PAHT will support patients to help prevent deconditioning, reduce the risk of additional complications and support the mental health of patients by helping them to maintain a routine whilst in hospital.
Sharon McNally, chief nurse and deputy chief executive at PAHT, said: “Our #MakeMovementCount campaign focuses on encouraging patients, visitors and our people to work together to take those small steps that really will make a big difference.
“Maintaining a routine whilst in hospital, particularly for the elderly or for those with already reduced mobility, is so important; and raising awareness to visitors and our people of the simple things they can do on a daily basis to encourage patients to get up, get dressed and get moving will help prevent the effects of deconditioning and support patients to be ready for discharge from hospital sooner.”
For further information visit the make movement count section of our website.