Supporting Clinical Services
Frailty Intervention Therapy
The Frailty Intervention Therapy Team (FITT) is an interdisciplinary team, consisting of a Physiotherapist, an Occupational Therapist and a Speech and Language Therapist, who provide early comprehensive functional assessments, identify persons (aged 75+) who are frail or at risk of developing frailty on presentation to the Emergency Department and complete onward referral to appropriate services in the hospital or community.
FITT are based in the Emergency Department in UHK during the hours of 8.30am – 4.30pm (Monday – Friday). Our team operates using an interdisciplinary style approach to screening persons aged 75 or over presenting to the Emergency Department between operating hours. We work collaboratively with the Emergency Department doctors and nurses, the attending Consultant Geriatrician and also the inpatient medical/surgical/orthopaedic teams in providing a rapid comprehensive multidisciplinary assessment, devising a suitable treatment/management plan and complete onward referrals to services based on the identified needs of the older person. We aim to avoid unnecessary acute hospital admission, prevent further deterioration in functional status, provide interventions to target reversible frailty and improve the patient experience in the emergency department.
Functional assessments carried out by the therapists include:
- Mobility and transfers
- Ability to carry out activities of daily living (ADLs)
- Cognition and Delirium
- Swallow function and oral hygiene
- Communication deficits
We also screen for any concerns in the following areas:
- Home environment
Our main aims are:
- To aim for early identification and assessment of people over 75 for frailty, creating a frailty friendly front door.
- To identify frailty markers earlier in order to enable an integrated health promotion and prevention approach, across acute and community services.
- To aim for admission avoidance for patients who present to the Emergency Department (ED) >75 years old where appropriate.
- Appropriate and early discharge planning, with follow up by the most suitable available community services in their own geographical area.
- To commence early therapy input and assessment to decrease length of stay.
- Continued research to support best practice within our service.
- To increase awareness of delirium & delirium assessment within the ED setting.
- Education and advice to patients and families/ caregivers in order for patients to maximise their functional potential on discharge
- To educate the staff on frailty syndromes.
What services can we refer to:
- Inpatient therapist (if admitted) – OT, Physio, SLT
- Integrated Care Programme for Older Person (ICPOP)
- Community therapy – OT, Physio, SLT
- Early Supported Discharge (ESD) – limited due to geographical restrictions
- Public Health Nurse (PNH)
- Memory Technology Resource Room
Tel: (086) 7871507
Clinical Specialist Speech and Language Therapist
Clinical Specialist Physiotherapist
Senior Occupational Therapist