Lancashire County Council has received national recognition for its commitment towards preventing people from being injured in falls.
They won the Preventing Avoidable Harms category at the 2016 Patient Safety awards last week for their ‘Steady On’ campaign, designed at raising awareness among the people of Lancashire of fall risk factors.
The scheme itself has been ongoing in East Lancashire since 2012 and is run in partnership with the NHS. In June, the decision was made to take it to the rest of the county in the form of specific workshops, where risk factors are outlined to raise awareness, home visits for those who are at greater risk of falls, and attendance at various community events across Lancashire.
Lancashire County Councillor, Azhar Ali, who is also the County’s cabinet member for health and wellbeing, celebrating it’s success, saying:
“People aren’t always aware of how traumatic falls can be. They can cause serious injuries and massive disruption to people’s lives.
“The ‘Steady On‘ scheme is an important part of our plans to ensure people stay fit and well and continue to live independently in their own home for as long as possible. We identify people who may be at risk of being injured by a fall and run group sessions providing practical advice that will help them, and the people who care for them to ensure there home is safe.
“For those who have already had a fall or are more likely to fall, we will organise a home visit where a trained health professional can assess hazards and put people in touch with local organisation that will help with measure such as minor adaptations, eye tests and helping people be physically active.”
The awards receive over 650 submissions, from which just 170 make the final stage. By the end of the ceremony, which was held in Manchester, there are just 12 winners, which puts in perspective the scale of the ‘Steady On’ campaign’s achievement.
Scott Rees and Co Partner, David Byrne (pictured left), praised the efforts of the County Council and urged more to follow suit:
“This is a fantastic initiative from our County Council, which in the long term will protect many of the vulnerable people living within our community from being seriously injured in a fall at home. It just goes to show what thought and consideration can do and I urge other councils, up and down the country, to take note and follow suit.
“The best way to reduce the number of people being injured, whether it is a fall at home, in work or in public spaces, is to discover methods of prevention and this unique idea has probably already contributing towards keeping many people safe already.
“I see no reason why this model can not be replicated to other areas of life where there is the potential for injury. The positives of decreasing the number of people being hurt as a result of falls are tenfold. As a knock on it will reduce the number of people needing treatment in our A&E’s, therefore removing some of the pressure that is currently growing on our NHS staff.